I’ve been pirated!

I have a bunch of ego searches set up for things like my name and links back to this blog. One of those searches is for my name on Twitter. Last week, this result appeared:

Blogging & RSS via Twitter

“ Interesting” I thought, especially since there was no e-book version of that title I was aware of. So, I clicked the link and found this:


Turns out someone took the time to completely scan and create a PDF of my 2006 book. The site shown above is like a torrent tracker in that it doesn’t host the files, just points to them. According to the site they will remove any pointers at the request of a copyright holder. So, I of course downloaded each of the three copies it pointed to. (Hey, it’s my book, I’m not breaking the law by doing so am I?)

Turns out all three copies are the same, just hosted on different servers. And, I must admit, it’s a really good electronic copy too. Here’s a screenshot of the cover…


…of the copyright page. (Nothing like being a little ironic.)


Looking at the document’s properties I must also say that the quality of the metadata in this file is much better than most PDFs I’ve ever downloaded. (Did they really have to create the file using a Mac? 😉


Since this first find, I’ve seen two other Tweets pointing to the downloadable version of my book and in all three cases I’ve replied to the tweets and received no responses back.

I’ve has mixed feelings this whole thing. On the one hand, they’re giving away my content for free without my permission. On the other, someone thought my book was worthy of the time and effort it must have taken to scan and convert 289 pages of content. Really, how many other “librarian” titles have you seen pirated? (Then again you may notice that I’m not giving out the URL to the download sites either.)

So, in the end I guess I’m not all that upset. It’s actually kind of flattering. I’m also starting to wonder how I can leverage this into sales of the second edition that I’ll be starting work on hopefully soon. In the end, given how I get most of my TV these days, to complain would be mighty hypocritical of me at least.

4 Replies to “I’ve been pirated!”

  1. This is really common with technical books, computer books, web 2.0 books. If you look at the book pirate sites, you will find many, many titles available.

    You can find your titles with the Twilight series and Harry Potter too, so that’s good company if you look at it that way. 🙂

  2. are you sure it’s a scan and not the original pdf used to print the book? it’s probably easier to hack a publisher’s site and steal files than to handle and scan hundreds of paper pages.

  3. Congratulations! Nothing says you’ve hit the big time like having people care enough to pirate your work. 🙂

  4. I’ll Agree with Mike here and will let the party pooppers rain on someone else campaign.

    Great advice on how to handle such a situation. I hope I have to deal with it one day.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *