Internet Pirates

I’d like to get your opinion. Today I received a notification that an internet site is offering a free PDF download of my new book, Symphonies & Scorpions.

The managers of this site probably think they’re doing the world a great service by giving free access to someone else’s intellectual property, regardless that it infringes on copyright protection. What they’re really doing, as far as I’m concerned, is stealing. I spent the better part of three years writing Symphonies & Scorpions and I don’t feel guilty charging $4.99 for a book which i.Berkshires calls “a musical odyssey of discovery.”

Perhaps if I sell enough copies, someday I will have earned minimum wage for the hours I put into writing it. It’s no Treasure Island. And with there already being such a glut of free information on the internet and–lest we forget–libraries, what is the point of stealing someone’s hard work? Could it be that in order to obtain the free download one has to set up an account, providing sensitive personal and financial information? I really don’t know, and the frustrating part is that after consulting with other authors and agents about this ongoing piracy it seems there’s little that can be done about it in this digital age.

Screen Shot 2017-12-27 at 10.11.25 PM

Long John Silver, a pirate.


Well, what I am doing about it is writing about it here and hoping to enlist your support. Yes, we all like something for nothing. But we also want a world that is rich in literature. Consider this. Though my primary reason for writing is not financial, there are thousands of authors trying to make a living. They are absolutely dependent upon their books selling, legitimately, in order for them to support themselves and their family. Book sales are the main criterion that publishers use to determine whether to offer an author a new contract, because they too are human beings trying to make a living. Free downloads at illegal sites pulls the rug right out from under the authors’ and the publishers’ feet.

There are some who believe that in an enlightened society all information should be free, so if you disagree with me let’s have the debate. But in the meantime, please realize that by buying a book you might be helping create the next Robert Louis Stevenson. If you accept a free download, you might be helping him walk the plank.




4 thoughts on “Internet Pirates

  1. David LaPorta

    Hi Gerry, I agree completely! Authors should be compensateed, and their books should not be pirated. I see that you have this your latest book on Kindle Unlimited, I believe that is also an good avenue for authors to gain notoriety for folks who may not otherwise purchase your excellent work, for whatever reasons, such as retirement, where every dollar must go a long way.
    Even though I’ve read your other books in hard cover, I would love to see the Jacobus series on Kindle Unlimited, (my preferred method of reading) especially the first four which are currently not offered in ebook format and I believe you have the distribution rights to. Best Regards, David LaPorta

    Liked by 1 person

  2. ccyager

    Hi, Jerry — This is such a huge problem! I agree with you since I am one of those writers who’d like to earn my living writing. In an ideal world where all information was free, then everything else would be free also and there would be no need to earn money to pay bills. Have you spoken with an intellectual property lawyer? Maybe a lawyer could send the website a cease and desist order? Otherwise, you’re probably right that there isn’t much to be done, sadly enough. So sorry!


  3. frances dearman

    This came up in my field, Gerald–ministry. I attended a workshop at General Assembly several years ago, led my a colleague whose sermons had been pirated by another; imagine his surprise when he was invited to guest preach, suggested a topic, and was told, oh no we had that last month from someone-who-was-not-you….

    For a Unitarian minister, plagiarism is grounds for eviction from fellowship. Bigtime. And of course, underneath is an issue of radical self-care and self-perception to which insufficient attention has been paid.

    And then theft also serves as simply, theft……

    The workshop presenter said that at first he was flattered, but then, not so much; upon reflection he determined that the key issue, for him, was authenticity. When we steal the work of another, we misrepresent ourselves, and the other… the cognitive dissonance of untruth…

    It’s theft. Piracy. I’ve never understood the allure of piracy; I was a merchant shipping officer for ten years, and a naval reservist for 23 years; historically, pirates were marginalized persons who survived by merciless predation–a menace to shipping. See Nicholas Monsarrat’s last novel, “The Master Mariner” (2v, 21978, 81); best not read on a full stomach, for the piracy chapter….

    Smooth seas, and a following wind to you…..


    Rev. Fran Dearman, newly retired from active ministry, at home in Victoria BC. I read e-mail at random intervals, at the Public Library; if your message is time sensitive, please telephone: home study land line: 250.592.4835 dire emergency cell phone: 1.778.835.8616




Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s