Last night it came to my attention that someone or some entity is using one of my works to subtly advertise their piracy site. At first glance, the ploy looks a lot like a few users having a discussion on one of about three book review/recommendation forums, but on closer inspection, it’s actually a set up to drive people (with a certain mindset) to a specific website.
The actual wording varies by forum, as do the users, but it follows the general formula:
OP: I really want to read this book. I can’t find it in any bookstore. It’s too much work to go to the library and I ordered it from Amazon but I never received it. Is there a website where I can get it easily?
Shill1: You really shouldn’t download things you find online. You could get a virus!
Shill2: <<Insert my stolen copyrighted book cover here.>>
Shill3: I know this great site where you can download it for free, no hassle.
Shill4: That book is great!
Shill5: That book is awful!
OP: Thanks. I didn’t know about that site, but it’s so much easier than the library. I can get this book to put on my iPad right now. I’m so happy!
I’ve been through the whole piracy mess before, but seriously, what do I do with this new twist?
If you REALLY want to read one of my works and REALLY don’t want to pay the minuscule sums I charge, I run free giveaways occasionally and I’m easy to reach. All you have to do is use a comment box on this site and I’ll respond when I have internet access, which isn’t always as I’m currently in a remote location, but it’s not so bad these days.
Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
P.S. I don’t own an iPad. I’d like to, but I have other priorities. If you do own one, shouldn’t you really consider paying the few cents or dollars to pay for content?
P.P,S. Just because you bought the book doesn’t give you the right to place the cover image anywhere online you please without actually asking the author or copyright owner first. I certainly don’t want my book covers being used to overtly or covertly advertise piracy sites. What are your thoughts?