Friday, 22 August 2014

Interview with a book thief.

There are, on Youtube, illegal copies of the audiobooks for my Broken Empire trilogy.


Youtube makes having them removed quite a struggle (both Youtube and the people who post them profit from the advertising that interrupts you when you play them - so why would they make it easy?)

So, instead of trying to get them removed I just put this in the comment section:

please stop stealing my work and the work of the people who put together this audiobook

Now nobody who is doing a bad thing likes to be caught in the act or be made to feel uncomfortable about their activities. If you point out to someone who has just thrown their coke can on the floor that there is a wastebin five feet away - they'll often as not tell you to fuck off, unless you're seven foot tall and mean-looking.

So sometimes my message prompts a reaction. This is a collection of replies from Emmanuel. The originals are all publically viewable on the youtube comments thread.

emmanuel
Not full copy please put full copy 

Mark Lawrence
Buy one.

emmanuel
Dear mark kiss my ass dident you get payd once all ready from the publishing house so whats this talk about stilling work.theres no work to be took you sold it and dont own it anymore 

Mark Lawrence
Buying a paper or electronic book doesn't entitle you to the audiobook for free. An enormous amount of extra work went into that and the narrator deserves to get paid, as do the technicians etc involved in its creation...

(extra note added for blog - I do of course get royalties per sale so each sale lost to theft hurts my income)

emmanuel 
Dear mark I didn't still your book I didn't up load it to YouTube but I do believe in being able to read or listsin to someone's work before taking home for good books and music being especially of those sins there a million of you guys all calling your selfs artist walking around acting like I'm robbing food from babys mouths the fact of the situation is I won't be robbed or tookin advantage of anymore I'm glad we live in the world today were I can see and hear for my self now.sorry you don't feel the same but wiy would you your a thief of some higher class or some shit lol
 
Mark Lawrence 
Emmanuel - you live in a very strange world of your own design. I spent years of my life writing books that you have stolen. For some reason you feel this makes me a thief. Do you really, for one second, believe anyone reading this exchange would agree with you?

You did steal my work. You have had all the benefit of it without paying anyone involved for their labor. In law you had no right to do that. It makes you a thief. 

Let's note here that we're talking about the third audio book of mine. So you've listened to two entire books, and halfway through a third ... to convince yourself they're worth paying for? Seriously?

You think after two books you might be 'robbed' by the author and the narrator if you actually pay for what you've taken? How does that even work?

emmanuel
Dear mark no one feels sorry for us thieves not me not you I'll continue listening to works of art that other people put out there for I and uthers evin though you come off as a man that has never listened to other peoples works for free and maybe you haven't evin though that seems very unlikely but as I said I pay for good work and that is my world I like that people throw it out there for me to sort thru the good from crap and I'll say this evin though you bitch like a rich smart stuck up man I like your work its gritty and cut throat post apocalyptic fantasy it has most of the elements of my tru world books like yours are Howe things mostly work that's wiy its strange wiy your braking my balls so mutch lol.anyways I'll probably go out and get your books to remind me that a famous guy like you gave me so mutch greef over words that only people that think the same in certain ways would remember in the end anyways its late bro I'm crashing have good night no worries I won't learn no lessons but I'll meet you half way :)

Mark Lawrence 
Emmanuel - I'm fascinated by your insistence on calling me a thief. I guess it makes you feel better about your own behaviour, but I would really like it if you could try to explain your reasoning. How, by working hard to make something, then offering it for sale, am I a thief? Please explain.

emmanuel
Dear mark and other fans of mark I just bought all of Darren
shan's work because I listened to most of his books on YouTube I guess that's money your not getting. And that's because your arrogant.next time you should maybe be nicer and talk to people ask what thay thought of the book that was put up on YouTube missing chapters. :/

Mark Lawrence
Dear Emmanuel. I don't want 'fans' who steal. I don't think you'll find many people who consider it 'arrogant' to object to theft. 

You will never find me being nice to thieves in the hope I might earn a few cents off them. That's not me. It's also not arrogant. It's how normal people are. You know ... the ones who don't steal.




39 comments:

  1. I felt like I had fallen into a bad version of Feersum Endjinn there with his spelling and grammar for a moment...

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    1. Honestly, with spelling and grammar as bad as his, I don't think he could have possible absorbed anything from the book. In a way, he wasn't stealing at all because he was too stupid to get anything out of it.

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  2. Well done. Mr. Lawrence. Emmanuel looks to be another of too many people who have been raised with no sense of right and wrong. In his mind and so many others, if you can get away with something it's ok to do. This is why we are so over regulated with laws and rules. Too many people think if I can't get punished for it, I must be allowed to do it.

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  3. All I can say to that exchange is . . . WTF? I'd like to think he was being a deliberate smart ass and just trying to provoke you, but I don't think he's smart enough to pull that off.

    Doesn't the publisher have a legal team that can put some pressure on these sites? Even if it's just a form letter/email, where it's coming from might make a difference. Just a thought.

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  4. What. The. Hell.
    Those 3 words, nothing more.

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  5. Nothing more ironic than cheap pricks stealing others work then complaining it is not all there.

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  6. I am proud to support writers by purchasing their craft! Keep up the excellent work Mr. Lawrence cause I'm still buying!

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  7. It's obvious the stupid guy only hears books/stories, instead of reading them...
    I'm speechless at the stupidity of some people!
    Well done for not shutting up.

    ScarletBea

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  8. Have your publishers upload your books into YouTubes Content ID System If any part of those books are uploaded to YouTube and monetized they will be automatically claimed and the money stream directed to the publisher, who can then give you your dues. They can then also issue DMCA Takedown Notices. Three of these and the entire YouTube Channel gets deleted.

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  9. As daft as the views Emmanuel expresses are, do consider that you could easily have just displayed a conversation that you were having with a ten year old.

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    1. I could have. But Emmanuel is 24 and stealing my work. I doubt there are any 10 year olds doing it.

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  10. It doesn't make it right, but piracy may actually help you make more money in the long run. 1. People listening for free may not have bought it anyway 2. After hearing it and realizing how good it is they may buy more of your stuff.

    I bought all of KJ Parker's stuff after I was "lent" a copy, that's $150 I never would have spent if I hadn't "obtained" it.

    Doesn't make it right (should've got it from library etc) but shows how it can still have a good outcome.

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    1. I've never bought those arguments, but even if they were true I still wholly object to the mechanism.

      I suspect that for the few who might subsequently buy after stealing, there are many who might have bought if stealing wasn't an option, but instead stole and didn't buy. A net loss.

      You can listen to samples on Amazon and on the publisher website. It's just a click.

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    2. Edward. The truth is that it is easy to access samples of the books. And you also have to think if the turnover of giving them away would pay for a narrator and all the work of doing it.

      And even if that is truth, if they are not given they are meant to be paid. and it isn't a guy on the internet that should decide otherwise.

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  11. My question is, how did you hold yourself back from calling out his grammar?

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    1. Lolcats have better English than this guy. :P

      BTW, I agree with the above poster to send the publisher or the team that created the audiobooks after those illegal uploads. They probably have a legal department to deal with such things.

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    2. because only dicks do that....

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  12. Wow.
    I believe the laws of thievery are pretty transparent: if you didn't acquire the right to own it, you don't.
    With the rise of the internet and piracy, it is harder and harder for decent artists of any form of media to properly be compensated for their efforts, when getting a book can now be as easy as downloading a simple torrent.
    Having said that, I love to read and I love to support the writers that take time and effort crafting stories for me to enjoy. Without a proper system to safeguard artists' content, it is left to the simple morality of human beings.
    What a shame...

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  13. This makes me really think about the pros and cons of libraries. People get to read books (sometimes for free) and don't have to actually support the author. I suppose the library had to buy the book in order to shelve it, but do they pay the publisher any money beyond the initial purchase price? In any case, I'm sure libraries are beneficial in the long run.

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    1. This on libraries:

      http://mark---lawrence.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/no-stealing-book-on-internet-is-not.html

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    2. So essentially using USA libraries is only marginally better than pirating.. It's good that the UK pays something to authors at least though.

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    3. Not at all. As the blog post says, a significant proportion of an author's sales can be to libraries. If you steal your books from the internet rather than borrowing them from the library then the government will respond to that falling demand by closing libraries, thereby reducing author income.

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  14. I'll be honest here-I downloaded pirated versions of the Broken Empire Trilogy. I do this with quite a lot of books. After reading your's, however, I decided to buy them because I enjoyed them so much, and then bought Prince of Fools without pirating first because I was confident enough that Mark Lawrence was a good author. I don't really see the difference between doing that and getting the books from a library then buying them.

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    1. It's absolutely not the same!

      http://mark---lawrence.blogspot.co.uk/2013/05/no-stealing-book-on-internet-is-not.html

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    2. Well, I now feel like a terrible person. I had no idea that library borrowing made so much of a contribution so much to an authors income. This really has changed my view on the matter, and I will take the chance to apologies for stealing your books.
      However, I posit another question to you-If I have already bought a physical copy of your book, is it alright to pirate a digital copy to use with an ereader? It seems wrong to have to pay twice for the same words, and if I really wanted to I could just scan my physical copy and run it through a converter,since I have a legitimate copy of the material.

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    3. It's only alright if the publisher say it is (they own and sell a product and have the right to sell it how they like).

      There are good arguments for why the publisher might want to allow the practice, but also arguments why they might not.

      Many people only want the ebook - if they see it being given free to people who bought the book they might (wrongly) convince themselves it's unfair that they have to pay for it, and steal it. If they pay for it they might ask if they now get the paper book free? So it's a bit of a marketing minefield.

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    4. Good luck fighting this fight. I argue this all the time with my coworkers. We work in the video game industry yet most of them pirate games/movies/software constantly. I try to give them solid economics based arguments but I've changed zero minds. They seem to justify it to themselves by saying it's not stealing to take a digital copy.

      On a side note I find the libraries bit interesting. I've discussed this with my mother in law before because she works at a library. She did not seem to know how authors are compensated beyond the initial purchase of the books to loan out. I'm glad to hear there is some compensation even if it's miniscule. That said from my anarcho capitalist perspective you are stealing from me when my tax money is taken from me and given to you when someone other than me borrows your book from the library. I feel the pain of my percentage of that 10 cent fee most acutely because I already own all of your books.

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    5. that was too funny!

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  15. I was looking into your books, when i stumbled on this page( I've not read any of your books but i find them quite interesting) so here's the thing, i love reading and cant afford most of the books that gets published these days and my parents don't encourage me spending so much on books either and the community library hardly has any books. so what happens to people like me ?????

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    1. You, my friend, learn the lesson that I and 99.99% of those reading this post have learned. Namely, that if you don't have the money to purchase a luxury item (& here luxury means something you would like but do not need) you have to work and save up for it. You don't steal it. You have no entitlement to things. If you were starving I would not condemn you for stealing a loaf of bread. If you would like a more fashionable pair of trainers ... I would condemn you for stealing them. You have a library full of books - it may not have the ones you want most, but that doesn't mean you should go and steal those.

      Additionally, if you talk to your library staff they will very likely order in books you ask for from other branches.

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    2. sir, i don't consider books to be a luxury, to me its knowledge, it is English literature and whole lot of things and more( I learnt English through story books and Shakespeare). And the kind of library system you talk about does not exist at least not in my country. And we don't have part time jobs for young adults i still have 3 more years of collage before i can get a job myself. I do not condone stealing but merely asking you what happens to people like me, which is the situation in most of the developing countries of the world.

      P:S: I do save up and buy most of my books

      “A mind needs books as a sword needs a whetstone, if it is to keep its edge.”

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    3. There are more free books on the internet than you can possibly read - there is no need to steal.

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    4. "I learnt English through story books and Shakespeare" ...False.

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  16. Loved this exchange. I have to say, I am currently writing my own novel and what alot of people do not realise is, how hard it is. After trying to do it for myself and realising how much work goes into it, all the writing and re-writing, editing, re-editing, and then finallly getting to the end. It would pain me to see people earn the fruits of my labour, whilst leaving me penniless, or a penny less.

    Need more tougher laws on this sort of thing :(

    M.A.E

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  17. Jeeesu, why even waste your time with that kid? Obviously he wasn't all there. Surely there are a couple literate book pirates out there. Other than that , it's a good idea.

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  18. I hate being a bearer of bad news, but you and for the sakeof augument every other artist, writer, actor, etc. is unfortunately fighting a battle you are more than likely to lose. I mean honestly, its a handful of y'all versus the internet, or more precisely the vast and growing number users on the net.... No chance. People will steal and/or pirate regardless of what rules, regulations, and laws are in effect. I mean everyone and I literally mean everyone likes getting something for free, thus the major draw of pirating. It is unfortunate and i believe that inciting that you as the author are aware this is happening to you and that you have requested people not pirate is in of it self commendable. Still....any way you slice it will almost always have a different meaning to any number of individuals. And by that fact alone its a battle you cannot win. Unless you happen to have a nuke to take out the icann internet hubs; then, maybe :/

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    1. I think instead of nuke you mean builders sun.

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  19. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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