This week was an introduction to how piracy really does exist! A fellow tweeter posted that several authors whom she recognized had books on a now defunct site called LendInk. This site advertised ebooks that could be downloaded for free. Totally free, and not through some Kindle Free Day. It was stunning. Going to the site, it appeared to be true. This pirate firm had downloaded hundreds of books and the covers. It was so slickly put together, that it appeared legit, even posting the actual logos from Amazon and Kindle.
Pirating of ebooks has always been a risk in the epub market. It is nothing new. Bloggers, like GalleyCat have posted excellent articles on this same subject in the past. But it is shocking when it happens to you!
Amazon Kindle was contacted and most authors received emails stating that this site LendInk did not have any electronic rights to their books. Amazon, as large as it is, was no help however in shutting the pirate down. Authors were advised it was up to them to file copyright infringement complaints legally.
Like wildfire, via facebook and twitter, as each author found out their book had been pirated, outrage swelled. Texts, tweets, and facebook postings grew to thousands in protest in just hours. The owner of the site was contacted via email and tweets, but of course did not respond. Authors were furious to see that their hard work had been stolen. Their small profits via ebook squashed with this free pirate on the loose.
Luckily, there is indeed strength in numbers. The internet makes running a scam business difficult due to transparency. After the owner ignored the pleas to remove the pirated books, a clever blogger got his personal information from GoDaddy. Thank goodness GoDaddy for recording the ownership information for domains. Lawyers contacted the pirate and within 24 hours, the website and the the facebook site for LendInk was demolished!
Way to go, fellow authors! Kudos and thank you for rescuing my book, FLYING SOLO from absolute copyright pirating. Your power and allegiance to each other whipped forth like lightening. Powerful, momentous, and victorious. So what is the message here? Support your fellow author. Reach out and connect to them. If you promo it forward for them, they will for you, too. Put #sharethelove4authors on your tweets. Connect through facebook. Unite, share and experience the power of numbers with Indie writers, bookstores, and publishers.