Rebecca Day

Pirates

Posted by rwday on July 16, 2009

No, not the Arrrrrh kind. No parrots, peglegs or Jolly Rogers, just illegally downloaded materials, specifically e-books. Erastes posted some information and guidelines for authors about fighting piracy. I want to add one aimed at readers.

Don’t, please. Really, don’t. When you download something off one of these sites, the author gets nothing. The publisher gets nothing. No royalties. Yes, someone bought that book at some point, but that person’s purchase of the book gives them the right to read it, lend it to friends, even sell it used, but it doesn’t give them the right to offer it up to everyone in the world via the Internet. I know there are authors who are just fine with their work being shared on these sites. I’m not one of them.

I write because I love it, yes, but it’s hard work, and hard work, when done well (and I try to do it well) deserves to be compensated. If you really can’t afford the $12 (or less for ebook), there are options. Borrow from a friend. Request that your local library buy a copy. Contact me privately – I’m not a heartless bitch, and if you are in genuine need, I’ll do what I can to make sure you have access.

In the interests of honesty, I have on occasion downloaded TV shows that aren’t available in the U.S. Mostly Torchwood and Dr. Who before they were shown here. Once the SciFi Channel/BBC America started showing them, I stopped downloading. Where something is out of print and unavailable, I understand making copies. If you can get the books or music or videos you want legally, though, please do.

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