Sunday, June 27, 2010

Open letter to John Scalzi, Scott Turow, Allison Kelley.

Open letter to the Presidents of RWA, SFWA, and Authors' Guild concerning copyright infringement.

Dear Scott Turow, Allison Kelley, John Scalzi,

Thank you very much for everything you do to defend authors' copyrights against copyright infringement. We very much appreciate having an address to which to send our complaints, and the comfort of knowing that you compile a database of the most egregious "pirates" and pirate sites.

Despite small triumphs, ignorance persists among honest readers; lies about the legality of "sharing" go unchallenged, and the problem is getting much worse.

Please Scott Turow, Allison Kelley, John Scalzi will you talk to one another, set up one powerhouse task force, meet regularly, share resources, engage your members, give authors one central "Go To" address where we can submit complaints, report piracy sites, blogs and yahoogroups, cc our individual take-down notices.

One forceful industry voice could shut down an entire account and insist on a hosting site complying with their own TOS where their TOS has been repeatedly violated, instead of individual authors taking down one file at a time.

Thank you.

Rowena Cherry (IWOFA)

Permission granted to forward, share, repost, or use as a template for other open letters.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010 - free file sharing and storage

Extraordinary case of the pirate calling her alleged victim the pirate. - free file sharing and storage

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Why Homeland Security Should Be Interested In File-Sharing Sites

This public comment in a public forum sparked a minor firestorm:
".... It took me a full day to realize that people were downloading a book that had been digitally encoded with my full name and IP address in the tag on every page. ...(rant redacted)... There was steam literally coming out of my ears, I was just that angry. I mean, DRMs and other such identifying features are one thing—they're pretty much invisible to others and can be removed. But having a person's name and IP address printed on every single page for all to see is quite another and that kind of information in the wrong hands could be disastrous...."
The lawbreaker who posted this is concerned about her identity, so I will not give full attribution. I consider this small fragment of a long public conversation meets the Fair Use criteria, as it is a small fragment, and I am using it for the purposes of education, commentary, critique etc.

The correspondent's public friends, most of whom are (for the time being) anonymous, went on to advise this young idiot how to crack DRM, how to remove publisher-generated code, and of the suitable precautions that any perpetrator of file-sharing should take.

Pirate sites are global. The owner could reside in Russia. The site could be hosted in The Netherlands. There could be "Teams" in India. Or Iran.

Most members are fairly anonymous. They can keep their profiles private. They can pm each other. (Some, however, openly befriend each other on Facebook and follow each other on Twitter, and it is easy to see how truly global these pirate friendships can be.)

The e-books aren't hosted on the pirate sites. Members share links to files which are hosted on other sites. Everyone disclaims responsibility. Many hosting sites pay lip service to DMCA but blatantly conspire to keep secret the real names of the uploaders and to conceal the titles and author names of the books being shared.

For instance: "Sticky: Hide & Code Your Links Or The Posts Will Be Deleted" Tanith

As we can see from the comments above, many pirates know how to remove DRM and personal information. If they can do that, they could ADD information, couldn't they? We know that some of them add viruses!

Haven't spies and so forth used books as means to communicate secret messages? What was the Enigma Code about? Now, with ebooks, anyone who wanted to pass a secret message wouldn't need two copies of a physical book. They wouldn't even need to purchase a book at all.

Maybe that is too fanciful. Hey, I write fantasy for a living. That's the way my mind works.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Checking Up On J A Konrath On The Pirate Sites

Pretty impressive. Joe has been reporting his sales numbers, but not on how many backdoor downloads there have been of his books.


Mystery : English  Ratio: 1.58farkadenear Download torrent 2.87 MB 7 95 15 9
Added on Sunday, May 30, 2010
Books J.A. Konrath- Jack Daniels Stories
Thriller : English  Ratio: 0.02raga90 Download torrent 2.97 MB 1 70 10 6
Added on Sunday, May 02, 2010
Audio Books J.A. Konrath - Jacqueline (Jack) Daniels Series Books 1-6
Thriller : MP3/64Kbps : English  Ratio: 10.25ilovemypita Download torrent 1.46 GB 3 118 4 1
Added on Monday, Mar 29, 2010
Books Cherry Bomb (Jack Daniels -6) - J. A. Konrath
Suspense : English  Ratio: 3.64Saturndark Download torrent 1.48 MB 1 156 6 2
Added on Friday, Jan 22, 2010
Books Origin by RA Konrath
Sci-Fi : English  Ratio: 0.08camelx Download torrent 495.59 KB 5 315 1 0
Added on Friday, Jul 24, 2009
Books Jack Daniels Series
Other : English  Ratio: 3.64Saturndark Download torrent 998.35 KB 2 240 4 0
Added on Friday, Apr 10, 2009
Audio Books Whiskey Sour - J. A. Konrath
Mystery : Other quality : English  Ratio: 2.78skleem Download torrent 168.64 MB 2 138 1 1
Sponsored links

This isn't terribly surprising.

Release results for Konrath:

Title Rating
JA Konrath - Jack Daniels 06 - Cherry Bomb
tashleen ( Other Fiction )
JA Konrath - Shot of Tequila
tashleen ( Other Fiction )
1 09 Nov 2009
rl Re: 1

Take Down Notice To Demonoid. Shame on Dell and MGM

Today, Demonoid was open for new memberships, so I took a look around to see which big companies are giving financial support to illegal activity.
DEMONOID is supported by advertising from DELL COMPUTER 
(Horizontal Header banner advert for some cheap laptop, suitable for pirates)

DEMONOID is supported by advertising from MGM Grand Las, Vegas
(Large right hand, vertical sidebar advertisement for cheap rooms and gambling)

Alas, I attempted to inform Dell by telephone of their unwitting support of illegal activity on the internet, and Dell forwarded me endlessly until a machine hung up on me after giving me some irrelevant phone numbers I might like to dial instead.

MGM was more gracious but clueless. However, their telephone operators spoke very good English, sounded caring, and did not sound as if they were answering the phone while eating hardboiled eggs whole. Eventually, I was forwarded to a screaming FAX machine.

I am going to try to bill Demonoid. I feel that I ought to set a nominal financial value on my work on principle, even though I recognize that most of the 435 people who downloaded my books would never have purchased a copy, even at $2.00

Besides, according to Demonoid's TOS, all users indemnify Demonoid against all costs, and I am curious to see what happens when the TOS are invoked.


Dear Sirs,

My name is Rowena Cherry. I own the copyright to novels by Rowena Beaumont Cherry and also by Rowena Cherry.

It has been brought to my attention that one of your users << xxxxx >> is in violation of your very responsible terms of service and also of the laws of the United States of America, in that << xxxxx >> has uploaded copyrighted material without the permission of the copyright owner (myself, Rowena Cherry).

Details of the torrent can be found here

The files in the torrent are


The torrent has been downloaded 233 times
Target files have been downloaded 202 times.

If you wish me to bill your user xxxxx, pursuant to the TOS requiring your members to fully indemnify Demonoid against costs arising from copyright infringement, please provide me with her full name, telephone number, and mailing address.

If you do not wish to share Demonoid user xxxxx's contact information, please accept this as notice of billing for 233 x $5  ($1,165) which is the lowest price for which the two novels may be purchased legally together, plus the lowest price for which either novel sells is $2 x 202. 

Please therefore remit  Total: $1,569


I hereby declare under penalties of perjury that the following statements are true and accurate. I hereby state that I, Rowena Cherry also known as Rowena Beaumont Cherry have a good faith belief that the "sharing" of my novels is not authorized by me, the copyright owner, nor any  other rights holders, their agents or the law, Moreover, I state that
I am authorized to act on behalf of myself in this matter.

Your display and sharing of my copyrighted novels, Forced Mate and Mating Net constitute an infringement of my exclusive rights to make copies and to distribute copies, constitute an infringement of copyright and other intellectual property rights.

I, Rowena Cherry have never authorized the material to be disclosed or published by you or your user(s).

My full contact information is as follows: