Have you Googled your book lately?

I did, and I found a few reviews I didn’t know about, which was quite gratifying, but I also found this, which was somewhat disturbing:

Misha Burnett - [The Book of Lost Doors 01] - Catskinner's Book - Binsearch results

Evidently someone has posted a copy of my e-book to a binary newsgroup.  Wow, I had no idea that binary newsgroups still existed–I though they went out with dialup.

But they do still exist, and someone posted Catskinner’s Book to one.

Upon finding this out I went through a number of emotions.  First, I was angry.  Somebody is stealing from me.  Then I calmed down a little bit and thought about what other authors have said about being pirated means that there is a demand for your work.  So I was pleased that someone cared enough about my work to post it to a newsgroup.  Then I looked at the guy’s posting history and I got angry again, because this guy posts a couple of hundred times a day–way more than he can actually be reading.  So he didn’t post because he read my book and wanted to share it, he probably has some ‘bot that scans Amazon for free books, downloads them, and reposts them to the binaries group.

Why would somebody be such a monumental dick?  Does he think he is somehow “sticking it to the man” by pirating e-books?  Did Amazon kill his family or something?

I saw that there is a form that I could fill out to request that Binsearch remove the link to the binary site from their search engine, but, honestly, why bother?  At this point it is so buried in the flood of pirated books that the odds of someone coming across it by accident is minimal.  Aside from a momentary daydream about having a meaningful relationship involving a pipe wrench and some duct tape with this “Psychopath” fellow, I’m going to let this slide.

I figure that if someone runs across my book and if that person downloads it and if that person actually reads it, then maybe I have gained a reader.  Most likely I am just a quickly flashing part of some dickweasel’s fantasy of being a big, bad hacker.

Look, if anyone out there wants to read Catskinner’s Book and can’t afford $2.99 for the e-book, drop me a line via my contact form and I will send you a free copy.  The buck or so that I make per download ain’t gonna break me.  On the other hand, if you can spare the cost of a grande latte, go ahead and buy it.  If you don’t like it, send me a message and I’ll gift you a comparably priced book of your choice.  Fair deal?

Usually when people say “it’s not the money” it means “it is the money, but I don’t want to sound like I’m cheap”, but in this case, it honestly isn’t the money–it’s knowing that my book was taken by someone who didn’t even want it for himself, just wanted to give it away to make himself feel like less of a pathetic loser.

So, want to know if your book is one the alt.binaries.e-book forum?  You can search here. 


About MishaBurnett

I am the author of "Catskinner's Book", a science fiction novel available on Amazon Kindle. http://www.amazon.com/dp/B008MPNBNS
This entry was posted in On Publishing, On Writing, Who I am and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Have you Googled your book lately?

  1. I found my book on Google Books at one point. The entire manuscript was up there to be read and there wasn’t even a download function. I had them remove it because that went a bit too far for me. I see your point on that being buried and gaining readers. Maybe they’ll still buy it or the sequel if they liked it.

  2. Yeah, I wouldn’t worry about it too much if I were you. I don’t think people actually use those sites, and if they do … like you said, best case scenario they find your book, read it, love it — which can’t be a bad thing! And there really is no worst case scenario, because … well, people don’t really use those sites, lol. It sucks that people would upload self-published books to sites like that, though. I don’t get what’s in it for them!

  3. Healthy outlook. Pirating is so ridiculous…. especially when, as you say, it’s not someone who has even read the book!

  4. sknicholls says:

    I feel that same way. When my book had over a thousands downloads on a free site that my independent publisher had put it up on I thought, “Wow, what a demand!” Then, I realized that these free sites were selling my book in other countries for three times what I had it listed for. I was so angry. I dropped the free site and had them remove it. Then spent weeks notifying all of the other sites to remove it. I would have probably benefited from the exposure. It was the principle of the thing though…that they would resell without any consideration for the author. My book costs less than a Starbucks coffee, the tip for a valet to park your car or deliver your pizza. What do these people really want? Such Greed. To make matters worse, I told my cousin about my book. I offered them my promo code. He is a millionaire and his wife says, “Oh, we get all of our books off a free site.” I told them how disgusting and disrespectful I think that is,

  5. LindaGHill says:

    Very sad that people take these days, with no consideration for the person who has worked so hard to produce what they so carelessly steal.

  6. kaineandrews says:

    I don’t know wether to be happy or somewhat disappointed that none of my work appears to have found it’s way into UseNet. But still, interesting article, and good points made (especially as regards the mentality of such individuals.)

    The really fun part, though? Find someone who does use such places (I’m sure everybody knows at least one.) Then find something they’ve made (I find a lot of them seem to have a fixation with DeviantArt, and often do commissions) and get it put onto UseNet or another piracy site. Inform them. Watch as they go nuclear. Fascinating social experiment, I tell ya. 😉

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