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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The problem: Amazon KDP/KU requires exclusivity from the authors, and punishes authors if they found their book published elsewhere. The punishment can be up to total removal from Amazon platform without an option to reinstate.
The solution: Search the internet for any infringements yourself and initiate a DMCA complaint, but that takes a lot of time and not always works, especially for overseas websites, and requires a constant repeat of the process.
Porpoised service: Automate the DMCA submissions for all the needed services, and make the submission repeat itself (Repeat time will be department by cost, but let's say daily).
Cost: 1-5$ per submission link - low enough to be usable for the authors, and not to be overburdened, and it will be much cheaper then doing the submissions yourself because it will take you at least an hour per submission to do that yourself each time.
IP and copyright - The service will not take the copyright from you, not will it assume that any IP is owned or represented by the service. It will only submit the form instead of you. You will be the one deciding what website to submit to and what website not to submit. The service will NOT decide instead of you. You are the one in charge and the service is not shown anywhere as being part of the process.
Will it help? Who knows for sure, it may remove some of the pirated books, but some of them will be left. If we manage to hurt many of the pirate websites' ads revenue then they will be more inclined to remove the books that fight than to have their AdWords account terminated.

Comments are welcome, tell me if you think you will use such a service and if you will be interested in it.
And if you think of any things that I should add, or maybe do different I would be glad to hear you.
 

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The pricing will need to be higher and you will need to make sure that you do not fall into lawyer terretory - most countries require certification to be a lawyer.

The core here is a) the proper legalese and b) the process of working through it in the right steps.
Part of the process is the research where to submit to, how to do it etc. The how to and the man power is a service people might be willing to spend money on but you would also need a good reputation for it.

The lower form of that is just dilligance - reserach where the book can be found or parts of it, lisitng it up and then taking it to a lawyer.
Next step would be to send mails (this would need to be done from the author or a lawyer I assume) and then followed up - a service can help here.

Suing however is clearly land of the lawyers but not everybody knows a good lawyer for this which is knowledgable and less expensive than other ambulant chasers. A list can help. zoom legal is an example for this
https://www.legalzoom.com/business/intellectual-property/trademark-registration-overview.html

You on the other hand need an advisor for business - once you have a process for this your prices will be higher. Also you need a different biz approach "per submission link" is an outdated modell simiar to copyrights for a certain amount of time, print runs or regions.

daily resubmissions: that also is not thought through as the legal process itself allows the other side (where you submit them to) a decent amount of time to react. You want to look at the process not at badgering them like a whining person. Diligence and tracking

hth
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Not exactly my point here.
I am proposing a simpler service, not one that will require a lawyer. I am not going to sue anybody, nor I will be representing you. Just a service to simplify the process that you can, and should do already for yourself.
Right now, you or me or anybody can submit to google a request to remove a copyright violation.
Same with sending the request to hosting to send to the website owner, anybody can do it, and that is NOT something that requires a lawyer to do so. (The for to send to Google is available to all).

You are not threatening to sue the website, you don't even know him. But you do use Google Copyright Check Process to remove the copyright. The website can (and in some cases will) submit their reply to your complaint, and in some cases, Google will take their side. The issue here is that for the pirate websites, it will be cheaper to remove your book from their website and then tell google "I have removed it" than to try and find an explanation for them.

Another thing that you mentioned - research where the book can be found - At least at the beginning of the service I am not going to do that, as that cost a lot of money. I will only provide you with a convenient way to submit the violation.

That is the reason why I can do this with a small, and per submission cost. I only simplify your own operation and can leave you with more time to write/promote or just relax with your family.
 

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I'm pretty sure there are services that do this already. How effective they are I can't say. Most pirate sites are in countries at laugh at US laws, so even if they drop the book it just pops up somewhere on a similar site. It's like playing whack a mole, but you don't get any tickets to use for prizes.

The thing about Amazon is they tend to recognize pirate sites and don't bother much about them. If they send an email about a book in KU being listed on one, you just tell them you've sent a DMCA and that pretty much is it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well 1st I have not seen a service like this online. I know that Blasty was doing that but they are off the internet.
The only service that does some of this is DMCA.org but they cost an arm and a leg, though they are providing a much larger service with lawyer letters and such.

2nd - I don't really looking here to enact US laws, what I propose is to try and push such websites to remove your book, not all books. And only doing it by means of making it cheaper for the website to remove your book, then to keep it. Thous website lives by traffic that is coming from search, and they mostly make their money by putting advertisement. IF (and it is a big if) I can remove the traffic, or remove the income, then the website will remove your book, then tell Google that the copyrighted material is not there, that will be enough of a win for me. If those complaints will remove that specific website from the internet, then it will be a HUGE win, but I am not counting on it.
I do think that we can hurt those websites thou.

3nd - Maybe Amazon do recognize it, or maybe they are not. I have heard both sides of the story here over the past 2 years with authors banned about copyrighted material. The temporary ban, or total removal of all the books, I have heard a few either way. The question will be for you is, what will be cheaper for you to do? Try and remove those links, or get a ban from Amazon?

That's why I am asking the question here, and not just creating something that I will try to sell. Any idea and any comment is welcomed.


 

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And only doing it by means of making it cheaper for the website to remove your book, then to keep it.
Well, to do that would mean filing lawsuits. And in most countries, nothing will be done. Many of us have been in this for years. We've seen it all. Get one site down, another pops up. No one cares about US law, or UK law, or whatever. The sites are in Russia, some country that was formerly the USSR, or Asian nations. They don't cooperate well with US law. Research Pirate Bay, and you'll see how many years various nations have been trying to get rid of that.

Law suits are expensive. There was an author recently who took a Canadian man to court over the site actually selling stolen works. The man bragged nothing could be done, and in the end he was wrong. But it took a lot of time and effort, and money, for that author to win. And in the end, the dude can just start up another site and do it all over again.

So, what exactly can you do to stop all these pirate sites? Record companies have been throwing money at it for decades, to little effect. What makes you different? Why will the sites listen to you, when they laugh at RCA? There are thousands, maybe tens of thousands of them. They start all over again if they even get closed down.

None of us like it. But some of us have accepted that there's little to be done about it but keep playing whack a mole, or paying someone else to do it. Just because you don't know of any other companies that are doing it doesn't mean they aren't out there. Blasty may have closed up, but someone stepped in, at least until they realized no one could pay them enough to hit all the sites. I mean, even at $1 each DMCA, the author may end up having dozens, even hundreds, of notices sent out. It will add up quickly, and many will decide it's not worth the expense.

And Amazon's bots are more sophisticated these days, we don't hear about accounts being suspended or terminated over pirate sites like we used to, even a year ago.

But, if you want to start this business, go ahead. No one can stop you. People will even pay for your services. My feeling is it's not going to go any better than it did with Blasty, but why would you care what I think?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I think I am not explaining myself correctly here.

I am not going to fill lawsuits, that will be a lost cause.
What I am offering is for you a way to maybe get your book out from them. Because you are not important enough for them to fight for it.

Let me explain it, using Google Ads as an example.

When you submit to Google Ads that a specific page is violating your copyright, google will check your claim, suspend this page from Google Ads and will notify the website.
Now, the website will need to decide, what is more, viable for them, to fight Google, to remove Google Ads from your page, to remove your page totally or to ignore.

If they will ignore, after enough complaints will be ignored this website will lose its Google Ads - No income, very soon no website.
If they will remove Google Ads from your page - your page will not generate revenue - after some time they will have many pages with the same issue, and we are getting to the above example.
If they reply to Google and explain themself - Most probably this means that the website has an active owner, and using his explanation he can be contacted, or he may be a real website and not a copyright violation - you will see his reply to google.
If they will remove your content - you won your battle with this one.

Now, this is an example of using Google Ads, but the same can be said about all the other services they are using. If they will have no traffic, they will close the website. If they will have no revenue they will close the website. And those are the ones that we CAN target easily.
Google doesn't want another case of copyright litigation, so they will remove from search, ads and others. The same can be said about the other services thous websites are using like hosting, CDNs and other advertisement platforms.

Now all of that is based on you being indi authors with a limited amount of readers. If we were talking about JK Rowling books here, the website would most probably go and prefer to "sell" as much as possible and dont care about it until the website is closed and the next one will be opened. But we are small fish and it's much cheaper for them will be to remove us than to try and fight.
 

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I know Blasty does this already, for a subscription price. I can't comment on how well it or any other sevice works, but the question of reinventing the wheel always comes up.
 

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To sell a service to authors, it's helpful to get honest feedback about what potential clients need and would use. In the spirit of that...

I think you'll need to come at this from a different angle to find a selling point for a service like this. As you've seen above, most experienced KU authors know how to manage the KU versus piracy question in the rare instances where it comes up. You might highlight other reasons why an author would want to pursue something like this but, honestly, the usual reasons don't tend to attract a lot of concern in the indie community.

It would probably be easier to keep looking for the right business idea, something a significant number of authors are interested in. It's always easier to sell something everybody wants than to persuade someone they need something they don't think they do. I'm not basing this on just the 4 or 5 responses you've received in this thread, but the fact most indies I know would raise the same issues the above posters did. One critical review = ignore. Most reviews critical = might want to rethink the whole concept.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Hi Carol

This is exactly why I went to this forum which is pretty large to ask this question. When I raised the issue on a FB group that I am following (LirRPG) the authors where very interested in it. But it's only a niche so I wanted a larger audience for my question and came here.
There is a much easier selling point, but it will cost much more money, and I am not inclined to try it right now. I can do the right internet search for pirated books, but the cost of it will be so huge it will not be economically viable.
And I do understand already that most indi authors just glad that somebody is reading them, and don't care if it's pirated or not. Or consider pirating their books as "high point" or the cariere.
I do know that what I propose will work because it works well in software but maybe the market is too saturated and the cost of production is so low that you don't care that somebody pirating the books. You can do another one. Or maybe by the time it's pirated you don't care about it as it's sales already too low?
 
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