A Follow-Up on the Piracy Issue

There was an interesting comment related to my piracy post that I responded to within the comments, but that I’d like to bring more visibility to, in case other people have different perspectives:

I disagree with what is implied here. Sure, some authors choose to give
their material away for free and that can be a good thing.

But, what does that have to do with authors who have their work
ripped off? That isn’t their choice, they are victims (of a crime). Is
the implication that they should just roll over and not consider it
theft? “Hey writer friends, even though it was someone else who decided
to pirate your work, just consider it a PR move! Because, people love
getting stuff for free and it could land you on the best-seller lists!
Who cares if it wasn’t in your marketing or business plan…” ????

Please tell me I missed something.

This may be picking at definitions, but what does it mean to have your work ripped off? Does it mean that someone makes it available for download, for free, to the masses? Does it mean one friend sharing the work with their friends?

When author Paulo Coelho found someone selling pirated editions of his work, he started a blog to help promote those pirated editions, and even encouraged further piracy, since in the long run, it has only increased his sales.

The tighter we try to hold onto things, the more we stand to lose. Sure, you can get mad, but what good does it do? Why not look for the opportunity inside it?

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0 thoughts on “A Follow-Up on the Piracy Issue

  1. Sandy James

    Heavens, no, Kathryn! I plan to what’s best for not only me but for my publisher, and that is to let them do their job while I write more books in hopes of selling them legally. I’ll keep my eyes open for any piracy, and should I find it, I’ll alert Siren-BookStrand — in fact, I’ve already done this a couple of times. They know how to shut the pirates down quickly. I just won’t waste precious time fretting about who is reading "Turning Thirty-Twelve" illegally. Pretty soon I’ll have five ebooks in circulation, I am realistic enough to know there will be pirated copies out there.

  2. Kathryn

    Sandy, I hope you don’t emulate the example (ie., Mr. Coelho) held up in these posts. At least not without assessing the risks with your attorney first. The last thing you want is a contributory infringement lawsuit brought against you, ala A&M Records v. Napster.

  3. Sandy James

    While piracy is one of my major concerns with my ebooks, I have to acknowledge that I can’t control it. My first ebook is out in cyberspace now, and I have no doubt it’s probably available "free" somewhere. I could be vigilant and look everywhere I can for "Turning Thirty-Twelve" and my name. I have a Google alert and all, but… Is it a good use of my limited time to prowl the Internet and try to shut down all the pirates out there? I don’t think so. I prefer to keep writing more books instead of giving into the fear. I don’t think I’m ready to take Coelho’s tack yet. Got to give him credit for ingenuity there. I’ll just have to be content with knowing it is selling legally and wish those who read it illegally would be able to keep it on its current perch as my publisher’s number one mainstream romance. Maybe those illegal "fans" will want to buy some of my future stories. 🙂


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