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News and Deals: Attention! Possible Infringement Alert on Amazon

Linda H emailed me today to let me know she stumbled across a group of people (possibly the work of just one person masquerading as many) republishing works that appear to be copies of others’ legitimate work. Three examples include Kate Rothwell’s Something to CherishRebecca Abbott Miller’s Save Me, Payton Lee’s, Novo Arkhangel’Sk.

Kate Rothwell, Someone to Cherish:

The death of Callie Scott’s fashionable father left her with nothing—except an inquisitive mind not even her grandmother’s puritanical upbringing could quash. An adventurous spirit doesn’t get her much in New York City, however, except an abysmal position as a ladies maid.

Things are looking up when she lands a trial job in a “special” library. Her benefactor’s offer of wine before noon should have signaled something amiss—not to mention the heated text she’s asked to translate. The more she reads, the more wine she needs to cool her blush.

Detective Cutter can’t quite place the tipsy young woman he encounters in a notorious brothel, but when she plants a dizzying kiss on his lips, he’s sure she doesn’t belong there. The resulting scandal of the police raid leaves Callie on the street, and Cutter feels responsible for her welfare.

Despite the cruel knowledge that he will never be part of her world, Cutter impulsively offers her a job in his home, where she turns out to possess more than the face of an angel. She has an irresistible, innocent sensuality—and an insatiable curiosity that could bring her one step too close to a murderer.

versus Bad Luck Loves Me:

A full-length gaslight historical romance set in 1884 New York City.

Innocent Callie Scott lived a sheltered life until she is trapped in a raid on a house of ill-repute. That’s only the start of her run of bad-luck. Two days later, she must turn to help from the same detective who has already witnessed her at her worst: tipsy and behaving like a fool. Officer Cutter doesn’t need the complication of a well-bred innocent in his life, but he still finds himself offering her a job. He discovers he must now act as protector to the same young lady he desires–and who wants him.

Rebecca Abbott Miller, Save Me:

There was nothing exciting about Crossdale, North Carolina. For Hannah Doherty, that was a good thing. After twenty-one years of unpredictability, sadness and disappointment, she needed boring. A serious illness kept her close to home, and she believed that’s where she would live and die — alone in that small town.

Max Fitzgerald was living a dream as a member of the hottest “boyband” in the history of the world. He had it all, including a hole in his heart that he couldn’t fill with fame, fortune, women and parties.

When Max finds himself stranded in Crossdale, it’s the beginning of an adventure that neither he or Hannah are prepared for.

Can true love grow from a one night stand between strangers? And will it be enough to save them form the forces that threaten to tear them apart?

The Quintessential Series Continues…

versus A New Love:

Out of Control… There was nothing exciting about Crossdale, North Carolina. For Hannah Doherty, that was a good thing. After twenty-one years of unpredictability, sadness and disappointment, she needed boring. A serious illness kept her close to home, and she believed that’s where she would live and die — alone in that small town.

Max Fitzgerald was living a dream as a member of the hottest “boyband” in the history of the world. He had it all, including a hole in his heart that he couldn’t fill with fame, fortune, women and parties.

When Max finds himself stranded in Crossdale, it’s the beginning of an adventure that neither he or Hannah are prepared for.

You get the picture.  There are various author names, but the name of the editor “Kevin Peters” appears to repeat. I’d recommend any self published author (because those appear to be the target) check this out.

*****

In good news, there are a couple of really good deals.

  • Fade to Midnight by Shannon McKenna * $0.99 * A | BN | K | S
  • Standing in the Shadows by Shannon McKenna * $0.99 * A | BN | K | S
  • Out of Control by Shannon McKenna * $0.99 * A | BN | K | S
  • Edge of Midnight by Shannon McKenna * $0.99 * A | BN | K | S

Robyn Carr’s first four Virgin River books have been released in a bundle. Amazon has the four books priced at $8.83 and BN at $9.98.  At Fictionwise the price is $ 19.95 | $16.96 (club) and there is a 60% off coupon code (021012) for Fictionwise. At Harlequin, the price is $17.96. You can use coupon code SAVE10AFFO at Checkout Ebooks only, until 3/31/2012. for 10% off.  Amazon | BN | Sony | Kobo | HQN | All Romance eBooks | Fictionwise

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com

47 Comments

  1. Angela James
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 14:11:08

    That Robyn Carr bundle is part of the $1 Special Offers from Kindle that ends today. I was tempted to buy it for that price, even though I get all of my Harlequins for free. But something about getting four books for $1 really got to me and I almost bought it just for the sake of getting the deal!

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  2. cecilia
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 14:25:01

    I looked at the first two titles on Amazon, and noticed that Kate Rothwell left a comment on one of the reviews for Bad Buck Love’s Me (lol) that it was a stolen book. How long I wonder before it’s not available?

    But I love the gall the second person has in charging almost twice as much as the original book is selling for.

    ETA: And also the fact that the subtitle is “A Romance story like no other.” That is Olympic-level cheek.

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  3. Angela James
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 14:29:26

    What strikes me is how much more prevalent these reports of people’s stories/work being stolen and resold are becoming in the past 6 months. I wonder if Amazon or someone else will come up some way of being a little more proactive about preventing this, since anyone with access to a computer can now upload a book and charge for it. Makes stealing work easier than it’s ever been and there really seem to be no legal repercussions to it that would make anyone unscrupulous enough to think of it hesitate to do it. Right now there seems to be nothing to prevent this at all, really.

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  4. Jody W.
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 14:44:56

    Amazon is not going to do diddly to prevent this kind of theft until there are legal consequences FOR THEM. It would cut into their income, both from their percentage of the stolen property and the $ they would have to invest to make sure uploaded books are not stolen in the first place.

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  5. LG
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 14:45:31

    @Angela James: Academia deals with the same issue – plagiarism is so much easier when you can just copy and paste from electronically-available articles and books. I know most (all?) of the professors at my university require students to run their papers through Turnitin. I wonder if Amazon and other online bookstores will be using something similar in the near future? I’m not sure how Turnitin works, so I don’t know if that’s a possibility.

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  6. courtship
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 14:51:32

    How do authors protect themselves from this? Is there a way to search on Amazon using an excerpt of your own material to see if it matches up to something else? that’s the really scary thing….how do you know unless someone who reads you points it out?

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  7. Emma Petersen
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 15:25:45

    @LG – I recently discovered my coursework was plagiarized. What pissed me off most was that the plagiarist was so blatant about it AND she was on the Dean’s List. It made me wonder if she got on the Dean’s List on her own merit or on the backs of other student’s like me. :(

    I know our country’s financial climate is not at its best but still…to blatantly steal someone else’s hard work and claim it as your own? I just don’t get it. If I remember correctly, one of the lessons we learned before we left kindergarten was not to take what didn’t belong to us. For the majority of us, that lesson was reinforced over and over again as we aged by religious doctrines, parents, educators, law enforcement and yet…plagiarists, pirates & the like rationalize away their wrong doings with a million and one excuses.

    Le sigh. I’m sorry this happened to these authors. It shouldn’t happen to anyone. Ever.

    **Yay! To 99 cent Romance though. That always rocks!

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  8. erinf1
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 16:22:10

    Wow… the audacity. They didn’t even attempt to hide the plagiarism. Names and locations the same. Slightly rewritten blurb. Wow. I went and “liked” all the plagiarism comments on these copies. Wish there was more we could do to help :(

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  9. Linda Hilton
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 16:24:05

    Thank you, Jane, for spreading the word about this. Many of the “Kevin Peters” books now feature reviews by the original authors alerting potential purchasers that the books are not Mr. Peters’ work, whoever he is.

    As for how a self-e-published author can check for infringement — I’d recommend (for starters and until the thieves catch on) googling key phrases from the cover copy, including characters’ names.

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  10. Kate R
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 16:34:13

    Yup, that’s my book they stole.

    The last time I saw that kind of wholesale thievery on Amazon, the plagiarists had grabbed a bunch of literotica stories. They just copy and paste, so it’s easy to find them on the internet.

    It’s even more egregious that my book ended up stolen because Someone To Cherish was already up at Amazon–I don’t get why AMZ don’t use a simple search engine to find out if the material has already been published on their OWN site.

    Lori Devoti has managed to track down a few of the authors that these people robbed. Amazon should be doing that job.

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  11. eve
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 17:14:53

    Some of the infringing copies also appear to be on Amazon UK.

    If the infringing copies are being sold in the EU, then I suggest you write to Amazon asking for the infringing content to be removed. You will need to show why you believe the content infringes and why you own the copyright in the original material. Examples like the ones given above will probably be sufficient to show copying.

    Until Amazon is notified, it can take advantage of the hosting defence in the EU Ecommerce Directive available to online marketplaces (such as eBay and in this case, Amazon). The hosting defence allows an online marketplace or an ISP to avoid liability for hosting infringing material on the basis that it could not possibly have known about it, since such sites do not actively monitor for copies. However, ECJ caselaw on the hosting defence says that once the online marketplace does know, it is fixed with that knowledge and can no longer take advantage of the hosting defence. That means that unless Amazon removes the infringing copy from sale, it would be fixed with liability for selling an infringing copy. In other words, you could sue Amazon for copyright infringement as well as the infringer which is good for a potential plaintiff because, unlike the infringer, Amazon has a place of business that you can find and deep pockets. The potential threat of such litigation may be enough for Amazon to remove the infringing material and to remotely delete the copies that have already been sold. The ECJ case came out last year so Amazon may already have a policy in place for this.

    If you then wanted to go further and find out who the infringers actually are, you could bring a court action asking Amazon to disclose the information. Amazon probably won’t give the information up without going to court, but at least in the UK, the ISPs who have been asked to disclose such information don’t bother to defend such an application so the order is usually made.

    The first option, if not the second, might be worth a try. If the practice is particularly prevalent and you belong to an association with commercial muscle or which is interested in lobbying for authors (such as RWA?), then perhaps you could get them to write as well? They may also be aware of equivalent US provisions that would allow swift takedown of the infringing material in the US.

    Good luck.

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  12. joanne
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 17:46:38

    I love the Amazon review by Violet Waters of the plagiarized BAD LUCK LOVE’S ME. The reviewer points out that it should be Loves NOT love’s and that the only thing the thief should be writing is “copious notes in a remedial language class”.

    I found the blurb for the original SOMEONE TO CHERISH by Kate Rothwell interesting enough to purchase that book so it’s my teensy contribution against plagiarism.

    That price for the first four Virgin River books is great since they were (in my opinion) the best of the series.

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  13. Joanna Terrero
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 17:52:05

    The plagiarists are not only stealing from the genuine authors, but violating the strict terms of KDP Select, and Amazon’s policy against poor customer experience. This is supposed to hurt Amazon.

    Amazon has been working on cleaning the house for a while, there are multiples threads in the Amazon KDP Publisher Support for Account Issues, about blocked accounts.

    The ‘self-proclaimed publishers’ (those who buy the same books by the bulk and publish them as originals or publish public domain books without added value), are the ones posting the most in that forum. These are out only to make money, they don’t care how it’s done. I don’t know if I can post links here, so I better don’t, but if you go to the forums you can see it in the first thread, and the last page is self-explanatory. It’s disgusting to read how this people who had never written anything, or paid an author for their hard work, try to defend their right to publish their acquisitions all over.

    Amazon needs to pay more attention to the legit work of authors being stolen. Maybe their famous algorithm could be used for more than to generate sales.

    I suggest that the authors who are victims, besides contacting Amazon directly (Amazon.com Legal Department phone: (206) 266-4064), post a thread in the Amazon KDP Publisher Support too. Besides denouncing what is going on, it might send a message that self-published authors are not an easy target as thought.

    It’s about time authors have their words heard.

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  14. Linda Hilton
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 17:54:19

    Just in the FWIW department: I was able to track down several non-fiction pieces “published” by the “Robert Wiseman” who is listed with Kevin Peters on several of the infringing romance novels. This appears to be a rather large-scale scam.

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  15. Kate R
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 19:37:43

    I’m not going to push for the money the plagiarists took–I’ve heard it’s a giant PITA. But maybe you lawyer types know: would some kind of class action suit against Amazon work in this kind of situation? They’re not protecting their authors. Maybe if they suffered when this happened, they’d take steps to prevent it.

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  16. Linda Hilton
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 20:42:56

    As of approximately 7:30 P.M. Arizona time, Sunday, 12 February 2012. all the Kevin Peters and Robert Wiseman books have been removed from Amazon.com. Thank you Jane for getting the word out and for helping to resolve this.

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  17. Joanna Terrero
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 21:01:08

    Those are excellent news, Linda. It’s the faster response I’ve ever seen from Amazon. Jane did a great job, as well as the reader that first spotted the problem.

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  18. An Interview and Some Links | Pegasus Pulp
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 21:21:20

    [...] languages, they are far less proactive in stopping actual scammers and plagiarists. Dear Author reports of two cases of obviously plagiarized e-books for sale at Amazon. This entry was posted in Books, Bookselling, Links and tagged Amazon, international writer, [...]

  19. Jane
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 21:36:38

    @Joanna Terrero: Linda is the heroine. I just provided the platform. She found the books. It was a good group effort.

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  20. Joanna Terrero
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 21:59:20

    @Jane: Thanks for telling me, I didn’t know she was the reader who saw it first. Great job Linda.

    And Jane, you’ve done your part too, going out of the way to sound the alarm.

    We all need to keep our eyes open, and not ignore ugly covers, like I did. I saw those books and didn’t bother checking, because of the horrible covers and the ridiculous titles, so next time, I know better.

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  21. Linda Hilton
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 22:14:47

    Joanna: I can’t say it was a pleasure discovering the infringments, but the effort has at least had a relatively satisfying ending.

    As an author myself, I know the effort, the blood, sweat, toil, and tears that go into writing a book. Even if it’s a bad book, a poorly written book, a poorly researched book, it still belongs to that author, and no one else has the right to take credit for it. I have no love for traditional publishers, but I absolutely loathe copyright infringers. As the late Bill Furlong, sports writer for the long-gone Chicago Daily News once said, “‘Tis better to be honest and hated than corrupt and despised.”

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  22. Joanna Terrero
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 22:32:54

    @Linda Hilton: I agree with you. I hope something good comes out of the whole incident and the hardship the authors endured don’t go to waste.

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  23. SN
    Feb 12, 2012 @ 23:26:43

    I bought that Robyn Carr bundle over a year ago. Didn’t realise people didn’t know about it!

    Thanks for the Shannon McKenna deals. For once they’re for Australians too!

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  24. Linda Hilton
    Feb 13, 2012 @ 08:10:56

    I know this site is more for readers than writers but because the issue of copyright infringement and plagiarism is so discouraging, I wanted to toss out a little nugget I found while researching the works of Peters and Wiseman. One of Wiseman’s now-vaporized Amazon titles was originally e-published by Mark McGuinness at http://www.wishfulthinking.co.uk/2007/12/03/time-management-for-creative-people-free-e-book/ I alerted Mr. McGuinness to the theft yesterday afternoon, but by the time he could reply to me, I had the happy task of letting him know the infringing works were already gone from Amazon, thanks to the efforts prompted by Jane’s Tweet and discussion here.

    And maybe some good karma came my way for not ignoring the warnings in my head that said there was something wrong with those books. I desperately need some time management coaching, and maybe someone else does too. Maybe we’ll find it in the original of a stolen work. At least I’m going to try.

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  25. Bren
    Feb 13, 2012 @ 10:21:30

    I don’t know if anyone’s ever used TurnItIn.com, but it’s a simple tool to check a student’s term paper for plagiarism. Amazon could install a similar mechanism to its uploading process to do the same. WILL they do such a thing is the real question. If Amazon was in earnest, they would refund the money of anyone who bought those stolen books, OR send the royalties of those books to the actual authors.

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  26. Sonya
    Feb 13, 2012 @ 10:25:19

    I wonder if it would do any good for a group of authors to begin a campaign on change.org for Amazon to pull/monitor this stuff?

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  27. Linda Hilton
    Feb 13, 2012 @ 10:45:38

    @Sonya: I suspect — though I could be wrong — that Amazon is not going to get into the business of verifying copyright.

    Their KDP — Kindle Direct Publishing — platform is in the business of epublishing whatever they’re given to publish. They put the burden of copyright verification on the author (or purported author) because that relieves them of legal responsibility for checking, and it relieves them of any liaibility should they publish an infringing work. By merely agreeing to remove infringing works if/when discovered, they’re off the hook. And they did remove the stuff yesterday VERY quickly.

    Thesse books were discovered by sheer accident, but it’s easy enough for an author to protect her/his own copyright with a weekly or monthly check of what’s been recently published. Amazon allows sorting by published within the last 30 days, so it would behoove each author to run at least a monthly check. I’m sure the other platforms have similar sort functions.

    I was also able to find some of these titles referenced via google searches. I didn’t look to see if any of those hits went back to other publishing venues, but it shouldn’t be too difficult for an author to check the others such as B&N, Smashwords, etc. to locate anything that looked suspicious. Searching location, characters’ names, setting, whatever would key in the book should reveal any infringing publications.

    One of the reasons Amazon reequires the infringed author to file the complaint is that ONLY the infringed author is being harmed by the infringement. No one else has legal standing as the owner of the copyright. If I went to Amazon and said I’m Linda Hilton and I think Emmaline Schleppeldorf’s novel “Insane Passion at a White Sox Game” is a stolen version of Alberta Kornn’s “My Love is in the Outfield,” Amazon would have no way of knowing if I’m just trying to spike Emmaline’s sales or what. ONLY the original author has legal standing to file a complaint.

    We are the owners of our works and it is up to us to protect that ownership. I’m still bitter that I
    OWN the copyright to two of my novels but I can’t e-republish them because of a greedy and stubborn publisher. No one else is going to protect us because no one else can.

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  28. Sonya
    Feb 13, 2012 @ 11:05:34

    So sorry to hear that about your publisher. How did the author find out since the title had been changed? That’s what I’m wondering is how long this kind of stuff went on before it was discovered and how authors can check. A Google search on portions of the work?

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  29. Bettie
    Feb 13, 2012 @ 11:53:03

    @Kate R: If they even used a system like my sister’s high school used to check the kids’ reports and papers for text taken from the Internet, they’d probably prevent a good deal of plagiarism.

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  30. Linda Hilton
    Feb 13, 2012 @ 12:53:02

    @Sonya: It apparently went on for about two weeks.

    I was just browsing through the Kindle recently released historical romance titles when I spotted the bad grammar in the titles. The errors were too egregious to ignore, and when they showed up on books by the same group of people allegedly as author and/or editor and/or foreword-writer, I got suspicious. That many books were published in that short a time by the same people with the same kind of horrible errors in the titles alone??? Unless they were all republished e-versions of previously print published works, I didn’t see how it was possible.

    On one of the books, someone had written a review that stated the book had been previously published by someone else. The reviewer had apparently done nothing other than write the review — never notified the original author, nothing. I started checking that book, and found out that yes, it had been previously published at a free download site. Just because the download is free doesn’t mean the author has given up the ownership of the copyright.

    So I checked the other books by the same set of authors/editors/whatever, and found that they, too, had been lifted. That’s when I sent the email to Jane. She sent out the Tweet, some of the original authors notified Amazon, and eventually the books were removed.

    Here’s the thing — Yes it’s easy to say Amazon should check every Kindle upload for infringement but that then makes THEM the responsible party and not the infringing uploader. Amazon has deep pockets and they don’t want people coming after them and suing for infringement. It also lets the actual infringer off the hook. “Well, yeah, I stole someone else’s book, but Amazon shoulda caught me so it’s really their fault.” And that is what would happen if Amazon/Kindle accepted the responsibility.

    But Amazon/Kindle doesn’t own the copyright. The only person who does, and is therefore the only person with legal standing to make a claim of infringement, is the original author.

    The infringer is the uploading author, and they ultimately have to be held responsible. Amazon/Kindle did their part in the Kevin Peters/Robert Wiseman incident — as soon as they were notified, they disappeared the infringing works. That’s the way it should be.

    But authors also have to take responsibility for protecting their copyrights and not just sitting back expecting someone else to do it for them. It’s the authors who have a vested interest in that copyright as well as legal ownership. If the author isn’t willing to go out there and say to Amazon, “Hey, this jerk stole my book and here’s the evidence to prove it!” why should anyone else?

    The other thing is that these 15 or 20 instances of copyright infringement were very easy to find and prove. The blurbs were word for word, the characters’ names hadn’t been changed, etc. In the case of Sylvie Sommerfield’s 1990 theft from Jan Westcott’s 1950 novel “The Hepburn,” names were changed, plots were added/deleted, and there was minor reworking of the text. But there was no question in the mind of anyone who had read “The Hepburn” that this was a case of copyright infringement.

    I found out about it as I was heading to the airport Sunday afternoon after the RWA conference in San Francisco in 1990. Since I was a long-time fan of and had a copy of “The Hepburn” sitting right next to my office computer, I purchased a copy of the Sommerfield book literally at the SFO airport to read on the plane. Chapter One begins on page 7; at the middle of page 15, I knew this was stolen. I didn’t need a copy of the original; I knew it too well. The extent of the theft was easily confirmed by comparing the two when I got home. Monday morning I called Romantic Times and told them about it. Westcott was still alive at the time and a suit was filed. The report that was made public was that her agent/representative had reached a deal with Sommerfield and Zebra/Kensington that royalties earned from sales of “Fires of Surrender” would be turned over to Westcott. All I can tell you is that’s what was made public in RT at the time.

    I still have copies of both books literally within arm’s reach.

    This case and others have been discussed here on Dear Author before. Just google Sylvie Sommerfield and plagiarism.

    How would Amazon — or any other e-publisher — have any way of knowing “Fires of Surrender” had been lifted if there weren’t also a digital edition of “The Hepburn” floating around out there? Should Amazon or B&N or Smashwords be responsible for checking each submission against the entire library of works written since the beginning of time, or even under current copyright protection? Can you imagine what the cost of e-publishing would rise to if that were the case?

    Putting one’s creative work into a digital format entails risk. Yes, there’s a copyright attached to it, but it’s still out there. Books published on a free site like obooko are at risk but so are all the other books published on Smashwords or Kindle or Nook or anywhere else. ONLY the copyright-owning authors have the legal standing to challenge an infringing work, and as long as they alone can challenge, they have to take the responsibility.

    I’m sorry I’ve written so much. This event has made me very disgusted and angry — at the infringers, not at anyone else — and my only objective is to protect the rights of the original authors, by letting ALL authors know that this can happen to them and they need to be aware of it. The publishers — Kindle, Smashwords, etc. — will not do anything other than remove the infringing works if they are so notified. But someone with legal standing has to notify them, and the only person with legal standing to do that is the original author.

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  31. Joanna Terrero
    Feb 13, 2012 @ 15:02:54

    It’s okay, Linda, we all understand your indignation, because we’ve experienced it in a way or another.

    However, let me tell you about another kind of plagiarism, because the flagrant plagiarists are the easy ones to expose.

    There is another subtle kind of plagiarist, the famous author who goes around borrowing ideas from everywhere, including unpublished writers who naivety shared their work online for free. If you are a writer posting your stories out there, you should know about this risk.

    Those plagiarists are the most despicable kind. Trust me. As a reviewer, I’d seen it more than I want to remember, and as an author, I had to endure it too. And the editors had no clue or don’t care, and it goes on and on. These thieves are hard to catch because they don’t steal someone’s full book, since they are professionals. They take whole scenes, the original ones that their decrepit minds can’t longer produce, or parts of worldbuilding, and characters’ traits. Then they weave it into their ‘original’ books. This kind of plagiarism is nearly impossible to prove. The excuse for this behavior is, nobody writes original ideas anymore. Really?

    The interesting thing is as a reviewer I got some of these books, and in one particular case, I bet that author never imagined I also was the same unknown person whose work she ‘borrowed’. Since I published the story under a username totally unrelated to my real name. I was not only upset, I was highly disappointed, because this came from an author I admired. After days ranting about it, my critique partners advised me to forget the incident and concentrate on my current work. So, I took down everything I had out there, too late, I know.

    Well, I better stop, because this is a topic that always gets me mad. Now, I better go back to my writing.

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  32. Stacie Mc
    Feb 13, 2012 @ 17:57:37

    Found one that Amazon hasn’t taken down with Robert Wiseman as editor and Kelly Peterson as author.

    http://www.amazon.com/First-Night-Visit-Relationship-ebook/dp/B0078HHLI2/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1329175798&sr=1-1

    It’s Lowry Pei’s novel “From the Next Room” available for free download here.

    http://www.lowrypei.com/novels/from-the-next-room

    I used the contact page on Pei’s site to let him know. Is there any way of letting Amazon know? I know it usually has to be the copywrite holder to request a book be removed but this is part of a scam they already know about.

    I don’t usually post reviews but I’ll go and post one on the stolen book to let prospective buyers know. Maybe other readers can do so as well.

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  33. Linda Hilton
    Feb 13, 2012 @ 18:09:36

    @Stacie Mc: Thanks, Stacie. That one must have gone live yesterday (12 February) after the others were removed.

    Again, this is why authors have to be constantly vigilant. Remember, Amazon/Kindle is only one site. These scammers could be operating on others as well.

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  34. Jen
    Feb 13, 2012 @ 18:55:59

    @Stacie Mc:

    And the “cover” is stolen, too.

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  35. Linda Hilton
    Feb 13, 2012 @ 22:03:16

    @Stacie Mc: The latest offering from the person or persons purporting to be “Robert Wiseman” has been removed from Amazon’s Kindle listing as of approximately 9:00 P.M. Arizona time, 13 February 2012.

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  36. Stacie Mc
    Feb 13, 2012 @ 22:41:06

    @Linda: Thanks for the notice. I got a reply from the email I sent to Pei. That was the second time the jerk had stolen one of his stories. It sucks that he’s getting ripped off after generously posting his works for free on his site.

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  37. Linda Hilton
    Feb 15, 2012 @ 10:47:34

    @Kate R: If you say I’m being paranoid, I won’t argue with you, but just this morning (Wednesday) I discovered this –
    http://www.amazon.com/The-Rat-Catcher-ebook/product-reviews/B0076TTAKY/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1

    I know this is the original title of “Someone to Cherish” and was surprised to see it with the 7 Feb 2012 publication date. If I’m being alarmist, my sincere apologies, but I didn’t want to just ignore it.

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  38. Joanna Terrero
    Feb 15, 2012 @ 13:06:24

    Yes, Linda, that’s the original book. Also, the publishers it’s Kate herself. I think she said the other day that Amazon was publishing her old books, even after she pulled them down. This might be what she was talking about.

    You know, I was thinking the other day, that maybe there should be a blog with Twitter and Facebook related accounts, where everybody could report these findings. If you do it, I’ll help you to promote it.

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  39. kathi robb harris
    Feb 16, 2012 @ 17:34:07

    I am a friend of kate R and can tell you she was shocked and really devastated by this theft! and that is what it is. She put her heart and soul into creating origianl characters and storyline. She is and avid researcher and spend weeks and even moths making sure her facts really are facts and not guesses. I feel no one is safe from this burgeoning plagerism problem. Self pubs are being targeted, but even well known authors are experiencing more of this. I hope that Amazon or someone finds a way to address this problem.
    Kathi Robb Harris… author of Heat Waves.

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  40. kathi robb harris
    Feb 16, 2012 @ 17:35:23

    Sorry, yes I can spell. I forgot to re-check before hitting post. My face is red.

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  41. Kate R
    Feb 16, 2012 @ 18:21:32

    Oh, look. Amazon sent me the plagiarist’s email and address. I hope they got it right because I’m posting it everywhere I can. Like here.

    Hi Kate,

    Thank you for your e-mail. The ability to purchase the title you reference below has been disabled. The detail page may still exist for a period of time, but the title is no longer searchable on our site. We trust this will bring this matter to a close. If you believe you are entitled to compensation, you may wish to contact the party who made the title available for sale on Amazon.com. Here is that party’s contact information:

    Carlos Onate
    557 SOUTH 1200 EAST
    SALT LAKE CITY, UT 84102
    [email protected]

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  42. Linda Hilton
    Feb 16, 2012 @ 18:30:40

    @Kate R: Regarding compensation — I would think you have the right to at least find out from Amazon if any copies of the stolen versions were actually sold.

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  43. Jody W.
    Feb 16, 2012 @ 18:32:34

    So Amazon knows WHO the thief is but isn’t doing anything else about it. If that’s how they treat criminals…

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  44. Sonya
    Feb 16, 2012 @ 18:39:29

    Would this be covered under the FBI’s Intellectual Property Laws? http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/investigate/cyber/ipr

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  45. Linda Hilton
    Feb 16, 2012 @ 19:55:58

    @Sonya: My understanding, Sonya, is that the FBI would only be brought in to investigate in order to determine if a crime has been committed (and we already knew that) and then to identify the culprit/s. Since that’s already been done, too, it’s now up to the infringed authors to decide if they want to pursue the matter further. Amazon has done their part (so far) in removing the infringing items. Whether there were any sales that generated income for the copyright holders is up to them to find out. They then would have to demand those monies from Amazon. And Amazon would also have the right to go after the infringer/s to recover damages, if any, they incurred as a result.

    But again, I’m not a lawyer and I don’t play one on tv, so these are only generically informed opinions.

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  46. German Reader
    Feb 18, 2012 @ 13:12:33

    I was just browsing through the new Kindle ebooks on Amazon Germany and I believe I came across another case of stolen books by one Morgana West.
    What made me suspicious was the same author, foreword, illustrator etc. thing, that was the case with the Kevin Peters books.
    So I downloaded the samples and googled.
    http://www.amazon.com/BDSM-Awakening-Submissives-Journey-ebook/dp/B007AKD9LK/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpt_6
    This is a book called Culture Shock by Sir Nathan, still free on Literotica but also available for sale at Amazon

    http://www.amazon.com/BDSM-Teaching-Virgin-Submissive-ebook/dp/B007AK7I8K/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpt_4
    This is a story from Literotica, I already contacted the author.

    http://www.amazon.com/Domination-Sides-Story-Complete-ebook/dp/B007AQ4GQ6/ref=ntt_at_ep_dpt_10
    This is also a Sir Nathan book called Dominique.
    I don’t know if I can put

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  47. German Reader
    Feb 18, 2012 @ 13:18:40

    Ups, my comment was send before I finished..

    I don’t know if I can leave a review on the amazon.com site as I’m a customer of the German site.

    There are a few more of the Morgana West books that I haven’t checked yet.

    ReplyReply

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