Saturday, May 15, 2010

Wall of Shame (Book Publishers who support pirate sites)

Tate Publishing
WE book
WestBow Press

Progressive Insurance
Allstate Insurance

Just a few of the companies that give financial support to ebook piracy by advertising on at least one ebook "sharing" site. They pay per click, too...

You think the pirates are sticking it to the man. You betcha.

There's even a message on this pirate site explaining to member pirates that by clicking the banners once a day, every day, they make money for the site!

"Help the site grow, Click a Banner Ad (at the top or bottom of site) once a day, or click this link to donate."

I cannot get over the mind-blowing stupidity of publishers (!!!) who are --probably unwittingly-- encouraging ebook copyright infringement.

Have they any idea at all what they are doing to themselves and their authors with their advertising dollars? Maybe they just trusted Google. Hmmm.

Maybe the Insurance companies are insuring the pirates!

A site like this makes money from the advertising, and the shameless requests for donations. They claim to pay MEGAUPLOAD an annual fee.

"We only use Megaupload via this filebox uploader to store files.

The reason is that this site pays a yearly fee for an account with megaupload.
If you upload using the below filebox, these links won't expire like they will using other upload sites (rapidshare, mediafire, etc)"
On the other hand, Megaupload pays a bounty (they call it a reward point) for every download from their site, so if 100,000 people illegally downloaded a copy of a book from a copyright infringer's file on MegaUpload, Megaupload would reward the pirate with a year's free membership, and also $100 via PayPal.

I wonder whether this explains why MegaUpload is slow to remove infringing files.

Here are the hoops through which an author must jump in order to get an illegally uploaded copy of her book disabled.

We take abuse of our service very seriously. If you wish to report a copyright infringement, we need you to send us a proper notification. A proper notification MUST have at least the following information, or it may be IGNORED:

1: Identify yourself as either:
  a: The owner of a copyrighted work(s), or
  b: A person authorized to act on behalf of the owner of an exclusive right that is allegedly infringed.

2: State your contact information, including your TRUE NAME, street address, telephone number, and email address.

3: Identify the copyrighted work that you believe is being infringed, or if a large number of works are appearing at a single website, a representative list of the works.

4: Identify the material that you claim is infringing your copyrighted work, to which you are requesting that Megaupload disable access over the World Wide Web.

5: Identify the material by its URL(s).

6: State that you have a good faith belief that use of the material in the manner complained of is not authorized by the copyright owner, its agents, or the law.

7: State that the information in the notice is accurate, under penalty of perjury.

Authors are in an interesting position with regard to pirate sites and storage sites. The storage sites' terms of service put the onus on pirates to not store copyrighted material on them. The pirate sites claim that they have no liability for the links on their sites, because they don't host any files.

No one but the author, agent, or publisher is permitted to report infringing material.
I don't know of any rule that prevents authors, agents, and publishers to report the same infringing material.

Moreover, keep copies of your correspondence, or screen captures if you have to fill out an online form. Most of the file storage sites TOS state that they will remove repeat infringers. They never do. If you can prove that they don't, maybe further legal action can be taken against them.

Proof that they don't remove pirates does tend to lead a reasonable author to infer that these sites are knowingly and deliberately accessories before and after the fact. It might lead a judge or state attorney general to a similar conclusion.

In addition to sending a DMCA or Copyright notice,  try lodging a copy here:

Or here:

Or here:





s7anna said...

Hey Rowena,
Quick question...Kobo is supporting pirate sites? I was thinking about getting the Kobo reader but I don't want to support a company that is encouraging e-piracy.

RowenaBCherry said...

Hi, s7anna,

It is very likely that Kobo has purchased an advertising package through Google adwords and has no idea that they are funding a pirate site.

If their reader seems good to you, get it.