The Insidious Facts on Piracy


Sir Philip Pullman said: “Online piracy of books, music, and other expressions of the human spirit needs to be properly understood: it’s an offense against moral justice. It’s the very opposite of freedom of speech, because it acts to prevent those who create beauty, knowledge, consolation or delight from earning even a modest living from their efforts. The law of copyright is one of the bastions of civilized living, but the acid rain of online piracy is slowly dissolving something we thought was set in stone. Surely it should be a fundamental duty of any decent government to defend the rights of those who help to create what civilization is.”

With the enhancement of technology, tablets, and e-book readers, that means readers can access books immediately. However, this has also led to books being pirated. Social media groups have been set up dedicated to finding books for those who don’t want to pay for them. It is far too easy to find a book to download online. A simple google search of the ISBN or going to a pirate site means authors are losing out on millions of dollars each year.
In 2017, the total loss of sales due to illegal downloading was $315,000,000. Some research shows since then, that number has risen to over $1,000,000,000, with the number of books having been downloaded at 31,514,064.
While the loss of revenue is awful, what makes it worse are the excuses given by those who all but advertise their pirating of books.
“It’s like borrowing a book from the library” and “I leave a review so the author gets something back” and “It’s not stealing if I buy a physical copy and download an electronic copy illegally.” Other excuses are that books are too expensive and it is easy to find a book online and download it.

Read the entire article in the March 2021 issue of InD'Tale magazine.

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