On Second Thought, Perhaps Stephenie Meyer Doesn't Get Online Fans

from the so-much-for-that dept

It really was just a month ago that we were writing about how super successful fiction author Stephenie Meyer was showing exactly how to embrace online fans, giving them free reign to build on her works and do more with them to build up her own popularity. As I was writing that post, I have to admit, in the back of my head, I wondered if I would later be writing a post about an anti-fan decision -- but even I'm surprised at how quickly it happened.

Apparently, a draft of the fifth book in her Twilight Series was leaked online, and Meyer is so upset b the ordeal that she's saying the book is on hold and may never be finished. Instead, she's telling people to consider the fourth book to be the end of the series.

As a writer, you can certainly understand the sentiment. She wants the final release to be as good as it can be, and that means getting the chance to do full rewrites, edits and other things to make sure that it's as good as can be. But, at the same time, she also has to understand that her fans are going to clamor for such a leak anyway. It shows how much they love her work and how badly they want to keep up on the latest story that they're willing to either leak or download the leak. It's just a sign of how strong their feeling is towards her work -- and her response is to punish them for it? That seems wrong.

Her true fans will still buy the completed work, should it ever come out. They want the official version and the leaked version. Why do you think so many music fans rush to get "leaked" copies of demo tapes of bands they love? People like to see how these things evolve and change over time, as it gives them an even closer connection to the work itself. I can sympathize that Meyers is upset by this, and that she might be concerned about the impact on the final story, but she might want to rethink her initial reaction, and realize that this is hardly something to be upset about. It's a sign of how much people care about her work.


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  1.  
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    garfalk, Sep 2nd, 2008 @ 8:28pm

    she's a genius!
    now, where did i put that sarcasm tag.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 2nd, 2008 @ 9:17pm

    Perhaps she should just start a Wiki and write her novel(s) there on a daily basis. Now that would be interaction with her fan base. Heck, literary critics could laud it or pan it on a chapter by chapter basis in real time. By, say, chapter 4 she would already know if her creative efforts are worth spending more of her time to write the novel.

    Once completed (if that should ever happen with a novel written in part by a committee of critics and fans), the entire novel would remain on the Wiki for download. Surely a major publisher would jump at the chance to make a substantial monetary investment to reduce it to hardback as the "official version" authorized and signed by the author.

    Consistent with the opinions of those who decry the mere existence of copyright as an affront to humanity, doubtless other publishers would also jump at the chance to also print hardback versions. Of course, without copyright such publishers would not have to share sales revenue with the author. Then again, their copies would suffer to some extent because the likely would be unsigned. Of course, they could offer other amenities to try and dissuade people from purchasing the "official version". A spiffy t-shirt would likely easily trump an autograph.

    We could then leave it up to the free market and competitive forces to determine which publisher makes any money. If the latter group prevails, then at least the author could go to bed each night secure in the knowledge that she has worked long and hard on a nobel cause for the public domain. That in and of itself should be payment enough.

    Personally, under the circumstances I believe she has acted in a very restrained manner. Small wonder she feels "violated". I can hardly blame her.

     

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    Lucretious, Sep 2nd, 2008 @ 9:17pm

    All talk about business models aside, that really does suck.

    I also think you have to give her the benefit of the doubt, she's only human and is reacting in a very human way. Perhaps she'll come around after a bit.

     

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    Not A Fan (profile), Sep 2nd, 2008 @ 9:25pm

    Let her have her tantrum.

    Having her compare a leak of a draft to "violating her human rights" was extreme, in poor taste and made her look incredibly stupid. (See the Entertainment Weekly story for the full quote)

    For pity's sake, she writes about sparkly stalker vampires and the most pathetic female self-insert character ever.

    It's not The Great American Novel. It's a poorly disguised indoctrination into the LDS (Latter Day Saints) belief system aimed at tweens and teens with poor self-image who relate to the self described plain, ugly, clumsy heroine.

    I'm actually grateful she stopped writing. Now maybe her fans will stop whining and move on to the classic vampire genre novels that are actually well written with good plot, excellent pacing and unique characterization.

     

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    Ray, Sep 2nd, 2008 @ 9:27pm

    Online Fans

    If you want an author who really gets online fans, check out Brandon Sanderson. He even has had two rough drafts of one of his latest novels (Warbreaker) posted on his official site, and now has the final novel on there... free. Plus he offers a ton of online extras for all of his published books including chapter by chapter commentary.

     

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    wasnt me!, Sep 2nd, 2008 @ 9:40pm

    Why do you think so many music fans rush to get "leaked" copies of demo tapes of bands they love? its a vanity thing: "i was the 1st to hear or read....." oh that? t dude old news.

     

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    Buzz, Sep 2nd, 2008 @ 9:46pm

    I called it.

    My wife loves the Twilight series. I made the exact same comment when learned about Stephanie discontinuing book #5: "She is overreacting." Sure, it's less than honest that someone spilled the draft onto the Internet, but does Stephanie honestly believe that fans would prefer not to own the final version in book form? "Oh, I have the rough draft PDF. I don't need the book." Riiiiiight. My wife could've easily borrowed each of the Twilight books, but no! She wants to own them! She loves the story and wants it to possibly be in our children's lives.

     

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    AranDe, Sep 2nd, 2008 @ 9:48pm

    ... At least she was nice enough to post her manuscript for the leaked book on her own website.

     

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    Liz, Sep 2nd, 2008 @ 9:50pm

    My sister follows the Fandom Wank community, so I've actually known about this for several days now. They don't think much of Stephanie Meyer, so maybe she just doesn't connect with online fandom, period.

     

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    Who? What?, Sep 2nd, 2008 @ 11:06pm

    Re: I called it.

    Yeah, I agree completely. I just bought the first in a series of comics, which I've found I really like. So I went and downloaded all of them. Now, does that mean I'm not going to buy the physical edition when I have the cash? No Sirree Bob! To be honest, I'll probably just read an issue or two of the series on my computer. Viewing a PDF or CBR on a monitor just doesn't compare to holding a book or comic in your hands. The book is a lot easier on the eyes too!

     

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    Elektrisk, Sep 2nd, 2008 @ 11:30pm

    Yeah.

    Yeah, she is totally overreacting imo. I'm a writer myself and were this to happen me, yes I'd be angry, but I would for no reason punish all of my fans.

    "A violation of my human rights"? Wow, she should open a law book. This is the Internet hon, a lot of dirty actions take place. Get over it.

     

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    Prodiem, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 12:13am

    She is hurt, lashing out

    All those comments she has made are really for the individual who leaked it. She has been hurt personally (emotionally) by this. I have to take 90% of what she says as huff and puff and ignore it. I too have said stupid things when angry and hurt, and my wife makes me apologize for each and every one of them at least twice a week.

     

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    PaulT (profile), Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 2:32am

    Yeah, this makes no real sense. Because some people have read an incomplete version of the book (and most of those people would be fans waiting for the proper version), she's now going to stop everyone from reading a final version? I understand that at least in this case it's not about money, but even then I don't understand why she'd want to punish fans waiting for her next novel just because someone's allowed them to take a peek.

    Oh well, if she really means this she's entitled to do what she wants. Just don't let the next story from her camp be "I've lost lots of fans because of this". If that happens, it's the scrapping of the novel that caused it, not the online leak - and, no, one did not necessarily have to lead to the other.

     

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    John, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 5:06am

    Her Target Might Not Be The Fans

    I suspect that the fans don't come into it at this point. She presumably had a draft copy, and sent it somewhere for a reason. It was then taken and released without permission.
    If I send a private document to an individual or a corporation, I expect that business to be a private transaction.
    I had a similar occurrence when working at the Canadian mining branch of a large North Carolina based gypsum wallboard manufacturing company - in my case, as I remember, I submitted a draft letter to the management with specific condition that it not be published as is, as I had some more to add. I believe it might have been for a newsletter.
    They went right ahead and published it in the draft form, which altered the context slightly.
    I was hopping mad, and rightly so.
    Whether fans like this author or not is irrelevant. She has been let down by someone she placed trust in. It is inexcusable.

     

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    Anonymous, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 5:13am

    Are you serious?

    Will you never get tired of defending criminal behavior? Should Stephen King be flattered that fans try to break into his house?

    I've got a better idea. She's the author here. Why don't you respect her creative process and let her post her work when she feels it's done? Isn't it enough that she lets people create fan-fic based on her works?

    If all this attention is so flattering, then why don't you enable public access to your servers so that we can read the drafts of your work before you post them?

     

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    atroon, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 5:51am

    What she should have done was...

    Stephenie Meyer, though I can't say that I like the books, does have the right to be angry with the person who leaked her book online. There's not much disagreement there--she submitted a draft to a publisher, where someone got their grubby mitts on it and posted it online. Bad. But, like people say, get over it. But she should have gone to the fans and simply explained that the book would be delayed while she found a new publisher, one who was willing to take security seriously, etc. etc. Then she punishes who needs to be punished (though I think a lawsuit would be in the extreme, I can see how it's not out of the question) and rewards her fans for their patience in a difficult situation. Alas, she jumped straight to the 'woe is me, I really am just a poor dumb heroine, now I'm throwing a temper tantrum' act. I had been thinking about giving the books a closer look, but I think I'm going to stop and re-evaluate that decision.

     

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    hegemon13, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 5:58am

    Why?

    Why would anyone clamor over an unfinished leaked version? As a writer, I know what my first and second drafts have looked like compared to the finished product, and I know I wouldn't want to read them! Fans are bound to be disappointed by the unfinished version.

    That said, the author is being silly here. Does she really think that fans will be satisfied with an unfinished work? When she releases the final, official version, they'll clamor over that. I understand her emotional response. It is a bit embarrassing, kind of like being caught naked, when someone reads your unfinished work. I know I cringe when my wife says she read something from a work I have in progress (though that is partly because a much darker side of me comes out in my writing that doesn't show itself day-to-day). Still, as a writer, you have to learn to deal with those emotions and move on. I haven't even been published yet, and I have figured that out. You would think that, as a professional, Ms. Meyer would have, too.

     

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    Duder, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 6:14am

    Re: Are you serious?

    "Should Stephen King be flattered that fans try to break into his house?"
    ---No one is breaking into her house, which would possible put her in physical danger. Hacking into a server is not the same as breaking into a house. - Fail

    "I've got a better idea. She's the author here. Why don't you respect her creative process and let her post her work when she feels it's done? Isn't it enough that she lets people create fan-fic based on her works?"
    ---Well if she had better security that would show how much she respects her own work. On top of that, no, when it comes to the internet, it is not enough when an author allows people to use her material to create their own story, but instead of fighting it, these authors should embrace it. When the radio first came out, newspapers fought it...think about that one (I believe the artcile on the radio war was posted on this site).

    "If all this attention is so flattering, then why don't you enable public access to your servers so that we can read the drafts of your work before you post them?"
    ---- That's his choice, and at the same time, if someone hacked into this server to get the original draft of each post, I am sure techdirt.com would love it. (what we see here is most likely the original draft anyways).

     

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    BoilerBob, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 6:23am

    Nothing to do with "Gettting Online Fans"

    I completely disagree with this being a part of getting online fans. This is not a case were works or fan sites or other ways to distribute her work, this is a case of an unfinished draft that wasn't up to standards being sent out. Maybe it's a bit overreacting to stop all together but this has more to do with pride then money. Most of the articles at Techdirt I agree with in the sense that they are about new business models replacing old models. If an author wants to sent out drafts and write a book on the wiki model, great that's a new model. Demo tapes and draft copies might not be up to the authors standards so just because a fan can get a hold of it does not make it right.

    One time I had a project that I was contracted to do. The project lead wanted to see an earlier version. He was excited because there was some new technology we were working with and he had high hopes for success. Now this was a proof of concept that I was playing with and using to learn some new technologies. It was well before it was due and not a tested finished project. After about 15 minutes of code review and unit testing, he yelled "this stinks, I can't ship this!". Even though my progress was right and my learning was going well, this experience soured both of us on this project and the finished, polished product was not well received because I need to be "pushed into quality". I think this might be what many authors fear, not a old world "I must protect my copyright".

     

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    Duder, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 6:32am

    Re: Nothing to do with "Gettting Online Fans"

    It's not about getting online fans, he's saying that this shows how excited fans really are for the next book. Instead of punishing ALL of her fans, she should just accept this as one of those things that will happen when your fans are children of the digital age.

    He says he understands why she is upset:
    "As a writer, you can certainly understand the sentiment. She wants the final release to be as good as it can be, and that means getting the chance to do full rewrites, edits and other things to make sure that it's as good as can be."

    But it doesn't make sense to "punish" all of your fans just because someone got one of your early drafts. These fans aren't the boss of the author, they are the customer. That is the difference between your story and her's.

    It makes sense to wait until the author believes the project is finished but when the author digitizes her work without any advanced security (assumed), then things like this will happen.

    My question is: "Why do you have all your work on a computer connected to the Internet?" All these people have to do is have a separate computer, not connected to any network, and that is where they should save their work. Why is that so difficult for people to understand: You won't get hacked if you aren't connected to anything.

     

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    Guitar Player, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 6:40am

    Try walking a mile in her shoes

    Anyone who thinks the fans are entitled in some weird way to the leaked version, or who thinks that such a leak isn't harmful to an author or a project, have clearly never written a commercially viable novel themselves. If you do the work, this is YOUR intellectual property, and fans -- however caring and well-intentioned -- simply have no right or interest in it. Nor is it appropriate to suggest that what amounts to criminal theft by one person is somehow validated because some fans are happy to have a bit of a preview. Ms. Meyer, whether I like her work or not, or whether I agree with her current reaction or not, is clearly entitled (morally and legally) to do exactly has she sees fit in this case. Moreover, her ability to protect her work legally may be compromised in some jurisdictions in which copyright arises on registration, rather than on creation, of the work. The person responsible for the leak, if apprehended, should be treated like any other thief of intellectual property and should feel the full weight of the criminal law system. I can speak here as both a commercially published writer and a lawyer. I suggest that those of you who think that Ms. Meyer is not entitled to feel the way she feels, that she is not professional, or that she should "get over it," ought to go out and write a novel, sell it, and gain some real commercial success and recognition before you shoot your mouths off. Then, when you've actually walked a full mile in her shoes, you might have some idea what you're talking about.

     

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    BoilerBob, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 7:18am

    Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    It's not about getting online fans

    Since the title is "Getting Online Fans" maybe Mike doesn't "get" how to write a descriptive title.

    But seriously, my story wasn't about boss vs. customer, it was about being soured on a project based on rough draft. Now that the story line is out there, fans will judge the work based on that. If the final book changes for the better, the fans could feel that the author was forced into a popular storyline, not the true direction. My question is to you:"If you leave your house door unlocked and someone steals your stuff, isn't it a crime?" I understand computer security and home security ( I practice both) but there's a double standard. If someone gets hacked, it's their fault for not protecting their work. I work at multiple sites (office, client, home) and there are a lot of advantages to having your data accessible via a network. Disconnected computers might make sense but don't count out the productivity gains of connected computing.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 7:27am

    My first thgouth was, where did the leak come from? I could understand her being upset and punishing the fans if the book was a copy after it was published, but in this case, I would be going after the person who leaked it. How about sue the publishing company for all "lost revenue".

     

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    Rose M. Welch, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 8:04am

    Re: Try walking a mile in her shoes

    Google John Scalzi and free and you can see what a real writer thinks of free, as opposed to the flavor of the month throwing a temper tantrum up there.

    Not that I think she's wrong to be upset, but why punish people who didn't do anything wrong? That's how to make yourself and your fans happy. /sarcasm

     

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    PaulT (profile), Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 8:26am

    Re: Try walking a mile in her shoes

    That still makes no sense though. She might be upset about a leak, but why pull the book? Isn't she both wasting the time and effort already spent and increasing the possible damage done by the leak by acting in this way?

    Not to mention that this has no bearing on the final product - what exactly does the leak damage in the published book? Any perceived deficiencies in the text can be written off as a result of it being a first draft, while she could (if desired) use feedback to make the end product better.

    Whatever she feels about the leak having happened, this is the wrong reaction and can only make things worse.

     

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    Annie-Rae Ross, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 8:32am

    I would be hurt too.

    She never said "may never be finished.", it's just on hold.

    I'm a huge Stephenie Meyer fan and I think she has every right to be upset. Anyone out there who thinks that she is overreacting needs to take a step back and remember a time they were cheated out of their hard work and how that made them feel.

    It hurts to work so hard on something for other people, only to have the rug pulled out from under you.

    She isn't throwing a "Temper tantrum" She is clearly hurt and just let her fans know what was going on. Is she just supposed to be ok with what happened?!

    She isn't Punishing anyone, it may feel like it but she obviously needs some time and I'd rather she take the time and come back when she is ready with a kick ass book then continue writing feeling hurt.

    Give her a break, she's only human. People need to stop building her up and tearing her down, it's not right.

     

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    PaulT (profile), Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 8:33am

    Re: Her Target Might Not Be The Fans

    The fans might not be the target of her comments, but they're definitely the ones affected by it. There are people waiting for this novel to be finished and published - presumably the only real audience for an early draft anyway - and now these people may have to wait more time because a version was leaked.

    She might be angry, but the best solution is to carry on as if nothing happened and finish the novel. The only way this can really do damage is if a finished copy of the novel is never available. Until then, all she needs to do is make it clear to fans that if they come across this novel, it's only a draft.

     

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    dagny, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 8:55am

    SMessiah needs to come back down to Earth. She was a mediocre author at best and is now a laughing stock at worst for her continued immature behavior. She dug her own grave and just keeps heaping on the dirt.

     

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    duder, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 8:55am

    Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    ":"If you leave your house door unlocked and someone steals your stuff, isn't it a crime?""

    I would have no one to blame but myself and yes it is a crime, regardless the pre-consisting condition of a non-secure house. But even then, stealing tangible objects is different than copying digital documents. She still has her work, she still can make whatever changes she wants thus surprising all her fans that look at the hacked draft.

    I am not saying do all your work on a non-connected, but that's where you should save all your work. HAve two computers running next eachother, one connected, one not.

    BTW the title is "On Second Thought, Perhaps Stephenie Meyer Doesn't Get Online Fans" the word "Get" is not used as in "obtain" it's used as "understand." Like "Get with the program"

     

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    Jessi, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 9:13am

    This series is so awful, but Meyer's reaction to her fans is even worse. She dismissed all criticism of Breaking Dawn, told attendees of a sold out signing that she hated coming to signings, and said that the reason why people didn't like BD was because their expectations were too high. Mine were exceptionally low after seeing the writing in the last three books and yet the book was still a disappointment.

     

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    Heather Faust, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 9:16am

    Love your article

    I do have to take issue with this sentence though:

    "She wants the final release to be as good as it can be, and that means getting the chance to do full rewrites, edits and other things to make sure that it's as good as can be."

    Umm... did you read Breaking Dawn? If that's as good as it can be, and if that's "edited," her career is in big trouble.

    She's being ridiculous about the leak. It is absolutely a good thing. It has her fans absolutely frothing at the mouth for the book. One could possibly wonder if she (or someone in her camp) did it on purpose. This drama queen hissy fit just makes her look ridiculous. And punishing her fans for her mistake (she also gave copies to 2 people who were on a movie set where it could have been picked up at any point) and the actions of one person. What does this woman have to do to piss her fans off? First she insults and turns her back on people who had the "audacity" to not like her book. She blames the backlash on the hype "we" put on her. (Who was doing a concert series and releasing spoilers and quotes and releasing another book and announcing Midnight Sun?) And now she is punishing her remaining fans for something someone else did? Ridiculous.

    On the other hand, every time she opens her mouth she just keeps making it worse for herself, so I say- keep it up!

     

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    Serena, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 9:20am

    What's interesting is that she was saying BEFORE the leak that she would be content to just never write again and stay home with her kids and her life pre-popularity. There was a telling interview on MTV or EW where she said that she was fine w/ never writing again. The writing was on the wall at that point in time, methinks.

    Added to that: yes, it sucks that MS "leaked"- but um... who gave out the incomplete manuscripts? Really?

     

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    mobiGeek, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 9:37am

    Re:

    The business model you describe is quite unlikely to be successful. Where are the incentives to the author? What happens to the publisher when they've starved the first batch of authors and no one wants to provide them with anything new?

     

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    LostSailor, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 9:53am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    "If you leave your house door unlocked and someone steals your stuff, isn't it a crime?"

    Absolutely.

    "But even then, stealing tangible objects is different than copying digital documents."

    Stealing is stealing, whether tangible or digital objects.

    Whether Meyer's work is a literary masterpiece or unadulterated dreck, the work had not been released to the public yet. This isn't just "copying digital documents," it was a theft.

    Now, the fans that read the draft aren't the thieves, but Meyer, and any creator, has a right to the integrity of their work. She's not "punishing" fans by not completing the novel. They may be disappointed but they have no inherent claim on her work.

    Saying "just get over it" is a little like saying that you should just get over being mugged if all the mugger gets is pocket change and anyway, you were out walking at night so what did you expect.

     

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    BoilerBob, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 10:13am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    I "Get" the title. Maybe I was unclear but my point was that having her fans excited over a leaked work and understanding that online communities can add value and excitement to her work are two different things. Finished works disturbed over the internet is a new business model. Drafts, demos, author's notebooks etc are stolen. Note that I usually agree with TechDirt on the fact that free distribution of digital objects is a workable business model.

    While you are correct that tangible and digital objects are different, there still is a crime in stealing digital information. Its for the author to decide when and where she wants to release her works, not whom ever can get them from her computer. Again this is different from complete and absolute control of distribution of a final product. Chat sites and fan fiction is a perfectly acceptable way to embrace excitement for your work. See something you aren't proud to release would make me mad.

    What you don't "Get" is remote access. Having data on a non-connected computer does not allow remote access. Just because someone can get to it doesn't mean it is ethically right to do so.

     

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    PaulT (profile), Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 10:50am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    Sorry completely wrong and I do have to correct these kinds of comments yet again...

    "Stealing is stealing, whether tangible or digital objects. "

    No it's not. Actual theft removes the object from a person's possession. Digital copying is copyright infringement - the person is still in possession of the original item, only now an unauthorised person also has possession of it.

    In this case, if Meyer had typed up the manuscript and that manuscript was stolen, that would have been theft. Here, she still has the original document to work on to her heart's content so it's copyright infringement, possibly a computer fraud/hacking crime as well.

    She also retains the rights to her writing, so if one of the people responsible for the infringement attempts to publish a version of it, they can be prosecuted for infringement. But not theft, since nothing was stolen. It's not really a hard distinction, and though the word "theft" is a much stronger one than "infringed", we have to use the correct one.

    "She's not "punishing" fans by not completing the novel."

    Yes she is. Fans invest more than money into something they love - something corporations never understand (and hence why fan fiction, mashups, etc. are always a grey area). The only people likely to be interested in the draft are fans waiting for the next book.

    If this book is never completed, they lose the investment they've made in the characters, the work they've possibly put into spreading the word, discussing with other fans, etc. They don't have a "right" to a new novel as such (other than the fact they helped make the previous novels a success), but for their anticipation to be crushed because someone else had a look at it first.

    To give a (slightly silly) analogy - imagine you like a particular restaurant. You go there as often as you can, you love the food, the people, the ambiance. Then, someone steals the chef's best recipes. If the restaurant owner decided that since other people have their menu, they might as well shut down, you'd be disappointed, wouldn't you?

    Yeah, it's a shoddy analogy but you get my point. The people who are being most hurt by this are the people who helped make Meyer a success and who were most looking forward to the novel.

    "Saying "just get over it" is a little like saying that you should just get over being mugged if all the mugger gets is pocket change and anyway, you were out walking at night so what did you expect."

    Speaking of shoddy analogies... A mugging is nothing like the copying of a digital file. In the mugging, there is violence and intimidation used, a tangible loss of income and a psychological effect on the victim. Here, nothing has really been lost unless someone tries to publish a version of the work (in which case they can be prosecuted).

    All Meyer needs to do is to better secure her documents (preferably take them offline completely unless she has a real reason for them to be online), finish the work she started, give the fans what they want and reap the rewards. I cannot see any reason why she can't do this.

     

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    Michael, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 10:56am

    Re: Yeah.

    Seems to me that being upset about something leaked is also unreasonable. What's a better way to gauge whether or not your fans will like your upcoming material? Let them see your upcoming material. If you don't want them to know your ultimate plans for the twist or end of the story, don't put it in.

    Or put in a false direction (perhaps one you thought about taking, but weren't certain if it would work) and get reactions to your work that maybe you thought was finished but may need some polishing. Ultimately, you're still in control of the final outcome.

     

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    duder, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 11:24am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    I am not saying what they did was right, you think I am siding with the person who has all that free time to hack into their favorite author's computer? No way!

    My argument is with the post in that instead of her freaking out, she should embrace it. Let's be honest, you know you have huge devoted fans when they start hacking into your computer.

    I am not saying she should embrace the "free" distribution of her draft, I am saying that she should embrace this obvious display of excitement. Do something with it. I am not sure what but I am sure she has people she can talk to and learn how to turn this "theft" into a profit.

    As for what I don't "get." I am saying, that if authors are concerned about hackers, they should just do their work that is NOT connected to ANY network. NOT EVEN REMOTE ACCESS. And You are correct in saying that just because people can hack it, it isn't ethical to do it. I agree, but that doesn't mean she should still "punish" the rest of her fans, especially those who don't even know this event happened.

     

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    duder, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 11:29am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    Please tell me your not responding to me because I never said "get over it" I am saying "EMBRACE IT" which means, fine, be all pissed off, but instead of trying to fight this problem, use it against these hackers.

    P.s. Thieves take things away, this guy just made a copy, she still has it.

     

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    Rose M. Welch, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 11:52am

    Re: I would be hurt too.

    It hurts to work so hard on something for other people, only to have the rug pulled out from under you.

    I would question whether or not she writes books solely so other people can enjoy them. If she did, she would publish them online and not take any profits. That way more people could enjoy them, right?

    In truth, it's probably a number of reasons, starting with her desire or need to write, her enjoyment of writing, her enjoyment of her fans, and her enjoyment of the money that it might bring her. (Which is not to say she's getting rich. Please let's not start that argument.) All in all, she does it because she enjoys it and when she stops enjoying it, she will stop doing it, which is what she's threatened to do more than once. More power to her.

    Furthermore, in other places she's explained that she's let a very limited number of copies out, all of which were different, so she knows *exactly* who did it. (Ref: http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080903/lf_nm_life/books_meyer_dc_2) A better idea than throwing a public temper tantrum would be to expose them and let the fandom take care of him. preferably through a media backlash, as opposed to surfer-fanboy-style, i.e. Matthew McConaughey.

     

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    Alimas, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 12:09pm

    Re: Re: Her Target Might Not Be The Fans

    You seem to think the fans are the center of her reason for writing the story, but her comments here paint that you're incorrect.
    Its quite possible shes been writing the story mostly for the sake of writing the story.
    I used to write a lot of stories when I was in my early teens. I loved writing stories, all sorts of different stuff, some of novel length. But the stories, whether you intend it or not, speak heavily of the writer. Your personality draws out in them as they are basically you writing out how you interpret reality.
    Someone she trusted leaking the story could easily feel like a personal psychological violation.
    If she isn't motivated by either the cause of becoming famous or wealthy this could very easily be enough to eliminate her interest in writing it any further.

    If I didn't need the money, I'd drop the story like a rock, as I had with others in the past.

     

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    Alimas, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 12:11pm

    You seem to think the fans are the center of her reason for writing the story, but her comments here paint that you're incorrect.
    Its quite possible shes been writing the story mostly for the sake of writing the story.
    I used to write a lot of stories when I was in my early teens. I loved writing stories, all sorts of different stuff, some of novel length. But the stories, whether you intend it or not, speak heavily of the writer. Your personality draws out in them as they are basically you writing out how you interpret reality.
    Someone she trusted leaking the story could easily feel like a personal psychological violation.
    If she isn't motivated by either the cause of becoming famous or wealthy this could very easily be enough to eliminate her interest in writing it any further.

    If I didn't need the money, I'd drop the story like a rock, as I had with others in the past.

     

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    Zinnia, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 12:18pm

    While it may suck to have a partial draft of an unfinished book leaked, it wasn't even close to the entire manuscript and most people who read it would have bought the final book.

    Is she overreacting? Absolutely. Does she look like a drama queen? Yes. Is she ultimately going to alienate her fans by blaming them (and not even the person who leaked it)? Without question.

    I don't think anyone is unsympathetic to her situation, but how she's handling it is quite revealing.

     

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    acousticiris, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 12:24pm

    The fact that it's been leaked and pirated isn't the point anymore

    I feel sorry for every author, musician and artist that has had something like this happen to them. Regardless of the legal terms, you'd feel violated.

    At this point, though, what does it matter? She can't un-leak the manuscript and she won't be able to stop it from being plastered all over the place. She could have taken a pragmatic approach, and found a way to capitalize on it. Hell, even doing "nothing" and pretending the leak never happened would have been better than this.

    Her approach to solving the leak is to sell exactly zero copies of a book that all of her "true fans" and many of those who have recently become Stephanie Meyer haters would still have purchased (regardless of their protestations about Breaking Dawn being wart atop a flaming pile of crap).

    I'm not an author, so I can't put myself in her shoes. But I took a math class and a philosophy class once, so I'll share my wisdom:

    If you don't release the book, you can't sell the book, therefore you can't make any money from the book. She's already put in a lot of work on the book, so assuming time really is money, she's actually in the hole now.

    I haven't read the series (and frankly, I haven't met another male who has), but it takes one Google search to see that she has a massive fan base clearly compliant with the 12 year old girl theory of economics. She could publish a bowel movement and she'd have a mob of people waiting to spend money on it.

     

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    nate, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 12:26pm

    Why do people keep talking about someone "hacking" her computer? That's not how it happened (I'd have more sympathy for her if that were the case)

    She gave out copies of the manuscript to people who're working on the film version of her first book so that they would get a better understanding of the story or whatever. GAVE OUT COPIES. I'm sure there were agreements of confidentiality signed (she says she actually KNOWS whose copy was the one leaked cos they were all slightly different) but still, she took a BIG risk in doing so. Once it's out of your hands you can't be 100% sure it's gonna stay secret.

    She's just throwing a tantrum now cos I suspect she wants to move on from this series, that's the impression I get from plenty of her interviews; people keep asking her for moar vampy action and she just wants to get on with other stuff. This leak provides her the chance to do so. This is just speculation of course, but it's what I believe. If, on the other hand, she DID have intentions of continuing with the Twilight universe but has been dissuaded to do so by this leak...then she's a fool.

    Personally I wouldn't mind it in the very least if she stopped writing altogether but it must suck for her followers.

     

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    LostSailor, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 12:27pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    Sorry completely wrong and I do have to correct these kinds of comments yet again...

    "Stealing is stealing, whether tangible or digital objects. "

    No it's not. Actual theft removes the object from a person's possession. Digital copying is copyright infringement - the person is still in possession of the original item, only now an unauthorised person also has possession of it.


    Not according to the law. At least in NY State, unauthorized copying of computer data in any form is a crime under the statutes dealing with larceny and theft. Copyright infringement is a violation of a right under Federal law and is a civil matter.

    I'm a little appalled that I even have to address this. Even if it were not against the law, it's morally still theft.

    Here's an example of the difference between copyright infringement and theft in the digital realm:

    If I make a copy of a digital file that I purchased and make that file available for copying, and you make a copy of that file, there is no theft involved, only potentially copyright infringement.

    If I manage to gain access to your computer and copy a digital file that is otherwise not publicly available and that I was not authorized to copy, that may also be copyright infringement, but it is clearly theft according to statute (which may vary state to state in the US), and may also constitute other crimes.

    I certainly understand why folks may not like to use the word theft, but it is accurate.

    "She's not "punishing" fans by not completing the novel."

    Yes she is. Fans invest more than money into something they love - something corporations never understand (and hence why fan fiction, mashups, etc. are always a grey area)...If this book is never completed, they lose the investment they've made in the characters, the work they've possibly put into spreading the word, discussing with other fans, etc.


    There are any number of reasons why Meyer may never write another book in the Twilight series, including her anger over the leaked manuscript. But fans, while they may be wild about the characters, have made no investment in any future installments of the series. They have made an investment in the books they purchased, and they still have those books. They don't "lose" anything if Meyer writes not another word, though their disappointment may be great. That fans may have talked to others about the series, characters and general wonderfulness of Meyer's work and spent countless hours talking about them may be a personal investment of their time, but it doesn't necessarily create an obligation on the part of the author.

    Meyer may be disappointing her fans, but she's not "punishing" them.

    They don't have a "right" to a new novel as such (other than the fact they helped make the previous novels a success), but for their anticipation to be crushed because someone else had a look at it first.

    It may seem unfair that the fans' anticipation could be crushed, but how does their "helping" make the series a success imply even a passing reference to a right to more novels? Your analogy of the restaurant is telling; I may be disappointed that my favorite meals are no longer available, but I'm not being punished.

    Speaking of shoddy analogies... A mugging is nothing like the copying of a digital file. In the mugging, there is violence and intimidation used, a tangible loss of income and a psychological effect on the victim. Here, nothing has really been lost unless someone tries to publish a version of the work (in which case they can be prosecuted).

    Well...it's not be best analogy, I'll admit, but my point in making it was that there seems to be an attitude around these debates that copying files is less of a crime because the "loss" is deemed small--or to some nonexistent. Violence and intimidation aside, you say that in copying a digital file "nothing has been lost". Well, in the next sentence you mention "tangible loss of income and a psychological effect on the victim". In this case, one could argue about the potential loss of income, but clearly there has been a profound psychological impact on the victim, Meyer. One may argue that she shouldn't feel this way, but she plainly does feel a violation. Why should that be discounted?

    All Meyer needs to do is to better secure her documents (preferably take them offline completely unless she has a real reason for them to be online), finish the work she started, give the fans what they want and reap the rewards. I cannot see any reason why she can't do this.

    I do not know the detail of how the manuscript was stolen and leaked. But while I encourage good computer security, it shouldn't matter. And there are any number of reasons why she "can't do this," including the aforementioned psychological impact of the theft. Just getting on with it as if nothing had happened to give the fans the ROI they demand is kind of a flippant response.

     

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    Dewy, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 12:33pm

    Please stop letting people post anonymously... Those are by far the stupidest replies I have read here.

    I enjoy the site, the authors, their insight, and the readers comments, when they are not hiding behind a tag of anonymity.

    That just gives them some right to be rude.

     

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    LostSailor, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 12:35pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    Please tell me your not responding to me because I never said "get over it" I am saying "EMBRACE IT" which means, fine, be all pissed off, but instead of trying to fight this problem, use it against these hackers.

    I didn't mean to imply a direct quote. But there is really little difference between "get over it" and "embrace it" other than the latter suggests more than simply getting over it.

    By "embrace" I assume (and please correct me if I'm wrong) you mean that to foil the hackers, Meyer should just post her drafts online herself for all to read. That hardly seems like a solution to having her manuscript stolen and posted online: it gives the hackers exactly what they want without the inconvenience of them having to hack anymore. That's a little like saying if my house was robbed, I should just put all my stuff out on the lawn.

    P.s. Thieves take things away, this guy just made a copy, she still has it.

    See my response above to this line of thinking. There is a difference between stealing something that has not yet been released publicly and distributing a copy of something obtained legally. Both may be copyright violations, but the former is also theft.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 12:50pm

    Re:

    posting as an AC is no different than the way you post. you use a potential pseudonym with no link to anything concrete. really there is little way to "prove" you are who you say you are.

    and while you may think that the anonymous posters only post trash I know that I've seen some of the best comments come from other ACs.

     

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    DanC, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 12:51pm

    Re:

    Obviously your comment is some type of an attempt at sarcasm, but nonetheless...

    Perhaps she should just start a Wiki and write her novel(s) there on a daily basis.

    If a publisher is willing to pay her to write on a wiki, more power to her. Since her time is scarce, she should be paid for it regardless of where she writes.

    Of course, without copyright such publishers would not have to share sales revenue with the author. Then again, their copies would suffer to some extent because the likely would be unsigned. Of course, they could offer other amenities to try and dissuade people from purchasing the "official version".

    Pay the author for writing the book, and let the publishers compete.

    A spiffy t-shirt would likely easily trump an autograph.

    You're seriously short-changing the value of authenticity.

    We could then leave it up to the free market and competitive forces to determine which publisher makes any money.

    That's how it works already.

    at least the author could go to bed each night secure in the knowledge that she has worked long and hard on a nobel cause for the public domain.

    The public domain provides a source of creativity and inspiration for artists. Are you suggesting that contributing to it is somehow an ignoble cause?

     

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    acousticiris, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 12:59pm

    Re: @Alimas

    "You seem to think the fans are the center of her reason for writing the story. Its quite possible shes been writing the story mostly for the sake of writing the story."

    Seriously? She makes a living "writing the stories." Before she *had fans* she may have been writing for the sake of writing, but now it's a living and it's clear she's serious about writing to make money and that building a large franchise out of this set of stories was important to her. She's sold movie rights, released a FAQ, agreed to 4 books rather than 2 in the series. This isn't the behavior of someone who's just writing for the sake of self gratification, this is the behavior of someone who wants to be a career author, that's why this move makes no sense except as an emotional reaction that should have been left between her and her family.

    Taking your statement at face value: If she was writing the story mostly for the sake of writing the story then why would she even care if the manuscript was leaked? She's writing for her own sake, right? Who cares what other people think? Why not just give the story away if she's writing just for the sake of writing?

    "If I didn't need the money, I'd drop the story like a rock"

    I can accept this line of thinking up to the point that it falls out of the scope of typical human behavior. There's no such thing as not needing the money. Even if she is the exception and really doesn't need the money, she claims to be a devout Mormon (a fact I'm not calling into question or judging). I'm sure she could find some place to put that unneeded money.

    Lets assume that this "psychological violation", as you put it, is so awful that she has found her ability to write has been irrevocably compromised (a situation I doubt ... we all learn how to cope with bad things that happen to us). There's is still no reason respond the way she did. It doesn't prop up future sales of her existing books and it doesn't make her any money on this unreleased book.

    Even slapping a cover on both ends of this manuscript in its current form would be a better choice than not releasing it at all. It wouldn't reduce sales since it's already "public" having been leaked, and she'd get to reap the benefits of selling a copy to every one of her 12 year old fangirls.

     

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    Alimas, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 1:43pm

    Re: Re: @Alimas

    "Before she *had fans* she may have been writing for the sake of writing, but now it's a living and it's clear she's serious about writing to make money and that building a large franchise out of this set of stories was important to her."

    It would seem, based on her decisions, that building a large franchise was more of an opportunity that showed up while doing what she loved to do. Rather than be the primary motivation for her writing, it became a secondary major one. And its not like shes losing everything. The movie spoken of will probably still get made, her previous four books will still sell and she can go on to write other stuff having nothing to do with the vampire and characters so many of her current fans are so specifically fond of.
    History is littered with people who wanted to do what they loved as a career, but when reality shattered the "love" part, they abandoned it.

    "Who cares what other people think?"

    Most writers I've known (my girlfriend has a degree in English and writing so through her friends I'm always bumping into folks that love to write as a major part of their lives) recognize how much of themselves come out in their writing. Before and sometimes after its finished, they often only want certain or specific people reading it (or specific ones not reading it). In fact, the more for fun the writing is, the more revealing and personal its probably going to be and the more major a negative situation with it will turn out. While it simply being handed out may seem like a minor thing to many of us powerfully secure individuals, someone who's less secure with themselves might perceive a great deal personal threat via criticisms and whatnot before shes had the time to build a final release and a preparedness for the world's thoughts.

    "Even if she is the exception and really doesn't need the money....I'm sure she could find some place to put that unneeded money."

    If it were about the money, I think we'd already see having slammed the leaker and now be rushing to release the book sooner in order to lessen the perceived effect of the leak on her final release. If its not about the money, its not about the money.
    Besides, anyone that ever says they can't think of a good place for unneeded money is an idiot of epic proportions.

    She didn't say she'd never write again, she'll probably write entirely different material and as another poster mentioned on here, she might be happy for that out.
    But if she wasn't initially in it for the money or fame, this is the kind of situation that would naturally occur.
    And frankly, there's nothing wrong with that.

    Unless of course she promised the funds to an orphanage somewhere or something. Then it'd be different.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 2:02pm

    Doofy

    Please stop letting people post by the pseudonym Dewy... Those are by far the stupidest replies I have read here.

    I really enjoy the site, the authors and the comments when they are not hiding behind the pseudonym of Dewy.

    Oh, wait . . . Nevermind.

    Hey man, we're all that guy in the car honking their horns at the guy in front of them ... if we actually got out of our cars and behaved that way we'd end up with a black eye. It's OK, everyone on the internet is rude. Jerk.

     

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    Rachel, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 2:12pm

    Everyone is reacting to SM's reaction to the leak. She has a valid reason for being upset, and people just need to give her a break. She said that it was being put on HOLD, not that it wasn't going to be finished. The reason for the hold is that she is upset and needs some time off to clear her head. I would rather have Midnight Sun written when she is in a good mood than vice versa. People can't think straight when they are pissed off, so IMO she is doing the right thing. It is not about "punishing her fans" or anything like that. She just needs space to breathe.

     

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    ClueBy4, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 2:58pm

    doh my keyboard @acousticiris

    "I haven't read the series (and frankly, I haven't met another
    male who has)"

    Doh, I now have Microsoft Natural Snapple 4000 keyboard; ergonomically squishy. :P

     

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    Mike (profile), Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 2:59pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    Not according to the law. At least in NY State, unauthorized copying of computer data in any form is a crime under the statutes dealing with larceny and theft. Copyright infringement is a violation of a right under Federal law and is a civil matter.

    You seem to have misread what you were replying to.

    No one was saying it wasn't against the law. They were saying it was a DIFFERENT type of breaking of the law.

    Either way, that's not the point here. The leak already happened. The question is how to deal with it, and the suggestion is that Meyer chose the wrong strategy.

     

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    Ben S, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 4:55pm

    Is it really a "leak" or "theft" if anyone can go and download it from her site, http://www.stepheniemeyer.com/pdf/midnightsun_partialdraft.pdf

     

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    DanC, Sep 3rd, 2008 @ 5:24pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    There is a difference between stealing something that has not yet been released publicly and distributing a copy of something obtained legally. Both may be copyright violations, but the former is also theft.

    No, neither is theft. They're both copyright violations, and the former would receive a harsher punishment because the infringing material was gained illegally. Both examples are illegal, neither is theft, morally or otherwise. Theft deprives the owner of their work. Copying does not.

     

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    Deborah Smith, Sep 4th, 2008 @ 5:12am

    Meyers acting like a diva

    As a veteran author (nearly forty books over the past twenty years) slogging away in the trenches of commercial fiction, I gotta say that most authors would LOVE to have Meyer's rabid fan base willing to swipe a partial manuscript. Pulling the book in a snit over some ginned-up notion of purity is ridiculous. This kind of pop fiction ain't Shakespeare (and even Shakespeare was a humble entertainer when it came to pleasing the masses.)Meyers needs to realize how very fortunate she's been to come along with this series at a time when paranormal fiction for teens is hot. Shaddup and publish the book and be glad people want to read it.

     

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    PaulT (profile), Sep 4th, 2008 @ 5:57am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    "I'm a little appalled that I even have to address this. Even if it were not against the law, it's morally still theft."

    Morality is something very different. Copyright infringement is not stealing, whichever way you look at it. This infringment can fall under many other statutes (industrial espionage and copyright infringment most likely, along with hacking), but not theft of property no matter which section it's place under.

    They're totally different things, and I wish people would stop muddying the water with this misuse of terminology. Note that I'm not saying that copyright infringement is right, just that it's not theft. Just as a mugging and mail fraud are two totally different types of theft that are dealt with differently, so we should not confuse copying of data with a theft of a physical item.

    "But fans, while they may be wild about the characters, have made no investment in any future installments of the series."

    I hope you don't work in the entertainment industry, as that's a very narrow and damaging viewpoint. For any artist to be able to continue working, there needs to be demand for their work. Fans keep this alive by not just buying the book, but discussing and advocating the books, this more in the sci-fi/fantasy genres than any other.

    So here, why was another book being written to begin with? For the author's health? Because she really wanted to write? Or because the previous novels were successful enough to warrant another story being written? Not to mention because there was a strong enough fanbase for her publisher to want to invest in another book. To my mind, this means that the fans were responsible for investing in a future novel.

    Besides, the fans have been promised another book, hence their sense of "entitlement" to it. If Meyer had said "nope, there's never going to be another book", this wouldn't be an issue. Now, she's promised one and then removed it after writing a version of it. There's a big diffference.

    "It may seem unfair that the fans' anticipation could be crushed, but how does their "helping" make the series a success imply even a passing reference to a right to more novels? Your analogy of the restaurant is telling; I may be disappointed that my favorite meals are no longer available, but I'm not being punished."

    You're having a favourite pastime removed due to another person's actions. Maybe "punished" a strong word to be using here, but fans were anticipating a product that may never now see the light of day. A product that was only going to be created in the first place due to their actions. They have every right to be pissed, and I wish I could think of a better analogy right now.

    "Violence and intimidation aside, you say that in copying a digital file "nothing has been lost". Well, in the next sentence you mention "tangible loss of income and a psychological effect on the victim". In this case, one could argue about the potential loss of income, but clearly there has been a profound psychological impact on the victim, Meyer. One may argue that she shouldn't feel this way, but she plainly does feel a violation. Why should that be discounted?"

    I'm not discounting the fact that she might be upset but it's nothing compared to a physical attack. She has lost exactly nothing. No income has been lost unless she decides not to complete the novel, which is her decision. There is no sane person on the planet who will decide not to buy a novel because they read a first draft. In fact, it's possible that the leak could have a positive effect - people who were unaware of her work until this incident was reported may now check out her previous novels and buy them.

    So, apart from feeling bad for a few days, what exactly has she suffered? I can't think of anything.

    "But while I encourage good computer security, it shouldn't matter"

    But it does. It shouldn't matter whether you lock your house, keep your bank account details secret, leave your keys in your unlocked car's ignition or any number of things you need to do to prevent theft. But, it does. However you complain about it, there are people who will steal out there.

    This should be a lesson in online security (especially the adage that the only way to make a computer hack-proof is to take it offline, and even then it's not completely safe). But why exacerbate the small amount damage that's been done?

    "Just getting on with it as if nothing had happened to give the fans the ROI they demand is kind of a flippant response."

    Why? Carrying on as if nothing happened is a big F.U. to the "thieves". It shows them that their "theft" didn't matter and they've not gained anything through their actions. By threatening not to finish the book, not only has Meyer shown the world that the theft really did matter but she's letting down thousands of people who put her in the position to be able to write the thing in the first place.

     

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    LostSailor, Sep 4th, 2008 @ 8:06am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    Mike:

    I don't think I misread anything. What I have been replying to is the idea that copying a digital file cannot be theft because "it's only a copy."

    Meyer may have chosen a course of action in response to the leak of her manuscript that disappoints fans, but it's not necessarily a "wrong strategy." It really can only be wrong if it doesn't achieve Meyer's goals, and those goals may be entirely different from those of her fans.

     

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    Anonymously Chigrined Coward, Sep 4th, 2008 @ 8:42am

    Re: (thousands of Re's) Nothing to do with

    Isn't this whole argument missing the point?

    At this point, it's too late for the author and any of us to care whether it's theft, copyright infringement, piracy, or breach of contract (assuming people she gave the manuscript to signed any contract).

    The manuscript is leaked, and now thrown about the intarwebs. There's no way to undo that. Responding to the leak in this manner benefited nobody but the people she's angry with for leaking the document in the first place.

    Here's what Stephanie's response did for her writing career and profitability:
    She's now spent a large amount of time writing a manuscript that her fangirlz have been clamoring for. Assuming she sticks with her statement and decides not to finish it, she's out all of that time and energy.

    Here's what Stephanie's response did for her fans:
    They've been told of a probability that the only thing they're going to get out of her as far as this book is concerned is a leaked draft of a manuscript. Some of them are going to wonder why they've decided to keep the existing 4 books in the series since it may not get fully fleshed out (listening to my wife, there's a lot of angry people angry about what happened in Breaking Wind or whatever it's called). My guess is a lot more people end up putting her old books on Amazon as used eliminating some more profits that could be had by Stephanie.

    She could have responded in a very different way and actually driven sales of her next book. Imagine she used the annoying "I haven't read what's out there so I can't verify if it is my work or not" while hiding her anger over the situation. Suppose she just chagrined and beared it, giving herself a few extra months to sulk while remaining out of the spot light and refusing to comment on the manuscript.

    Before her statements, there was already a debate as to whether or not this manuscript was real (many thought it was "bad fan fiction"). Suddenly the authoer is behaving very oddly, and she's delaying her book, it must be the real thing. Or maybe she's angry that someone would think that piece of "bad fan fiction" was her work and it wasn't the real thing.

    Suddenly this leaked manuscript is a piece of promotional material for her book that's going to be released a few months late. She didn't intend it to be leaked and isn't happy about the leak, but she's found a way to take advantage of it anyway.

    I know artists are all about feelings. Writing is an art. Clearly she didn't have the right people helping her with responding to this, or she didn't listen to them. How you feel about a situation is irrelevant, how you react to it is crucial. That's where she failed.

     

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    acousticiris, Sep 4th, 2008 @ 8:45am

    Re: @Zinnia

    "I don't think anyone is unsympathetic to her situation"

    I think a lot of people are less sympathetic now than they were before she responded like this.
    Everything you said is dead on ... it's a lose, lose, lose, lose situation because she chose this reaction.

     

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    LostSailor, Sep 4th, 2008 @ 8:46am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    Copyright infringement is not stealing, whichever way you look at it....They're totally different things, and I wish people would stop muddying the water with this misuse of terminology. Note that I'm not saying that copyright infringement is right, just that it's not theft. ...we should not confuse copying of data with a theft of a physical item.

    I agree that copyright infringement is a different than theft, and I have not argued that they are legally identical (I'll argue the morality of it elsewhere). But, depending on the circumstances, a single act of copying a digital file can be both copyright infringement and theft. I've already pointed out at least one state statute that specifically supports this. The other concept, that theft can only occur when a physical item is taken, is simply not a valid understanding of the law.

    I hope you don't work in the entertainment industry, as that's a very narrow and damaging viewpoint. ...Fans keep this alive by not just buying the book, but discussing and advocating the books, this more in the sci-fi/fantasy genres than any other.

    Actually I have worked in the entertainment industry and in the SF/Fantasy genres. And were I Meyer's publisher, I would be hounding her to keep pumping out books in the series as often and for as long as possible.

    So here, why was another book being written to begin with? For the author's health? Because she really wanted to write? Or because the previous novels were successful enough to warrant another story being written?

    But looking at it from the author's side, there are many reasons why she might not want to write another book in this series. Her reasons are her own, and I don't pretend to know them. But many authors are very protective of their work in draft form and apparently Meyer acutely felt violation at the leaked draft. It's not always all about money or even success; novel writing is usually a highly personal endeavor.

    To my mind, this means that the fans were responsible for investing in a future novel....Besides, the fans have been promised another book, hence their sense of "entitlement" to it.

    Fan were responsible for the success of the published novels because they bought many copies; there's no "investment" in future novels, no matter how highly anticipated. They may feel entitled, but that doesn't actually create any entitlement or obligation on the part of the author. It's her work and her decision whether to release it for pubic consumption; many an author has completed a manuscript, decided for whatever reason that it's crap, and burned it.

    Maybe "punished" a strong word to be using here, but fans were anticipating a product that may never now see the light of day. A product that was only going to be created in the first place due to their actions.

    The novel may have been created even if the previous ones were not a success (though it may not have been published). Fans may create market demand, but they don't create novels, writers do. Fans are clearly disappointed, and they have every right to be pissed off. They can loudly demand a new novel in the series, but the author is under no obligation to produce it.

    I'm not discounting the fact that she might be upset but it's nothing compared to a physical attack. She has lost exactly nothing....apart from feeling bad for a few days, what exactly has she suffered? I can't think of anything.

    Generally I'd agree that it's nothing compared to a physical attack, but it's not up to you or me to decide what she's suffered or what she's lost. That's something only Meyer can tell. Clearly she's been adversely affected by the incident. Whether you or I can think of anything she's suffered is irrelevant.

    In fact, it's possible that the leak could have a positive effect - people who were unaware of her work until this incident was reported may now check out her previous novels and buy them.

    It's possible, but in this case unlikely, and anyway is pure conjecture. I agree that the leak of the manuscript would be unlikely to lessen sales, but as I mentioned above, it may not be solely monetary considerations that are motivating the author.

    It shows them that their "theft" didn't matter and they've not gained anything through their actions. By threatening not to finish the book, not only has Meyer shown the world that the theft really did matter but she's letting down thousands of people who put her in the position to be able to write the thing in the first place.

    Apparently the "theft" did matter, to Meyer. And the fans didn't put her in a position to write the novel in the first place. She could write the novel in any event. The fans have put her in a position to sell tons of copies if she decides to publish it. (And I'm putting the word "theft" in quotes only because her computer wasn't actually hacked, the partial manuscript was apparently leaked by someone she trusted and had provided a copy to for advance reading.)

    And, just out of curiosity, if her fans do indeed have an investment in the next novel and if there is indeed any implied obligation for the writer to deliver it, is there any reciprocal obligation upon the fans to continue to buy her novels, even if they tire of them?

     

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    bobby new bobby, Sep 4th, 2008 @ 8:48am

    She needs to lose some weight.

    I think she's kinda fat and should lose about 100 lbs.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 4th, 2008 @ 8:54am

    Re: She needs to lose some weight.

    thanks for adding something completely useless and irrelevant to this conversation!

     

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    LostSailor, Sep 4th, 2008 @ 9:00am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    No, neither is theft. They're both copyright violations, and the former would receive a harsher punishment because the infringing material was gained illegally. Both examples are illegal, neither is theft, morally or otherwise. Theft deprives the owner of their work. Copying does not.

    Sigh. You are correct that they're both copyright violations, but the instance where the first copy was gained illegally would still be theft, as defined in most U.S. states by statute. Theft is taking something that does not belong to you, and under certain circumstances copying can indeed be theft, whether the owner retains a copy or not. I really can't fathom why this is so hard to understand.

     

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    bobby new bobby, Sep 4th, 2008 @ 9:46am

    Re: Re: She needs to lose some weight.

    It’s just an observation.
    She has somewhat of a pretty face, I’d paint it.

     

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    PaulT (profile), Sep 4th, 2008 @ 10:55am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    We're agreeing on a few points here, but a few additions to the wall o' text:

    "The other concept, that theft can only occur when a physical item is taken, is simply not a valid understanding of the law."

    I'd disagree, but we have to agree to disagree on this one I suppose.

    "But looking at it from the author's side, there are many reasons why she might not want to write another book in this series"

    That would be fair enough, except that's exactly what she was doing. She's not decided not to write another book, she's decided to *stop writing the one she was already working on*. Big difference here.

    "But many authors are very protective of their work in draft form and apparently Meyer acutely felt violation at the leaked draft."

    Fair enough, and having written myself (nothing published as yet, sadly), I can understand that it would be hurtful. But, I'm sure my reaction would be to plough on regardless and finish the thing, not go and sulk.

    "And the fans didn't put her in a position to write the novel in the first place."

    That's arguable. Is she a full-time professional writer? I believe she is. If so, how can she afford to work on the books full time and still pay rent, food, etc., without having to hold other jobs? Because either the publisher has paid her a sizeable advance based on existing market demand for the new novel, or because she has made enough money from the previous novels so that a "day job" isn't necessary.

    Either the income or market demand will have been created by the fans. Whether or not you believe that the sense of entitlement they hold is justified, she does owe them some debt of gratitude for making her current lifestyle possible.

    "And, just out of curiosity, if her fans do indeed have an investment in the next novel and if there is indeed any implied obligation for the writer to deliver it, is there any reciprocal obligation upon the fans to continue to buy her novels, even if they tire of them?"

    True fans (fanatics of her works, what the word truly means) will continue to buy her books as long as they retain the qualities they have come to love. They're not under any obligation to do that, of course, but that's the nature of the entertainment industry. As long as the quality of her work is maintained, the fans will continue to pay for the privilege of enjoying it.

     

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    DanC, Sep 4th, 2008 @ 11:01am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    I really can't fathom why this is so hard to understand.

    Mostly because it doesn't really make sense to equate copyright infringement with theft. They're two separate offenses.

    Theft is taking something that does not belong to you

    Theft is the taking of someone else's property. Taking someone else's property would naturally result in them being deprived of it. Copying is not taking; copying is copying, and no deprivation of property occurs.

    the instance where the first copy was gained illegally would still be theft, as defined in most U.S. states by statute.

    And in Dowling v. United States, the majority decision drew a distinction between infringement and theft:

    Since the statutorily defined property rights of a copyright holder have a character distinct from the possessory interest of the owner of simple "goods, wares, [or] merchandise," interference with copyright does not easily equate with theft, conversion, or fraud. The infringer of a copyright does not assume physical control over the copyright nor wholly deprive its owner of its use. Infringement implicates a more complex set of property interests than does run-of-the-mill theft, conversion, or fraud.

     

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    PaulT (profile), Sep 4th, 2008 @ 11:04am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    The distinction is this:

    By stealing something, you not only illicitly gain the item itself, but you deprive the rightful owner of that item. e.g. if you steal a candy bar from a store, the store can not sell it so they lose their investment. Steal a car and the owner of that car loses his transportation and incurs costs finding alternatives.

    By copying a digital file, you deprive the rightful owner of nothing. If you only use that copy for personal enjoyment, the only affect is that the rightful owner may lose the ability to sell you another copy of that item (and even that's questionable). If you then transfer that file to others, the owner only loses something if the people obtaining the file do so instead of buying a legitimate copy.

    Again, yes, everyone here agrees that it's not a good thing to do and that those who get caught should be punished. But, it's a far, far more minor issue that stealing something, and so the words "theft" and "stealing" should not be used to describe it.

    Forget the legal semantics (most laws are woefully inadequate to describe digital activities of any type to begin with). they are two totally different things and should be considered accordingly.

     

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    MRSTJ1, Sep 5th, 2008 @ 6:31am

    Oh, come on!

    In my personal opinion, Breaking Dawn was so unbelievable bad, and so unlike the previous books that were so beloved, that Stephenie lost a boatload of fans because of it. I do not know how this leak happened, although I'd love to know who she gave the rough draft of this book to that left it lying around, but after the castigation she got from so many sides after Breaking Dawn came out, I'll bet this author is enjoying the few fans who are now begging her to finish Midnight Dawn. Of course some people had already decided not to pay more money for the same story, albeit a different aspect of it, anyway.

    I dont know if this is theft or carelessness, because I don't know who had the original copy, and who copied it. But I do think it was a mistake to acknowledge it the way she did. Until she did that, no one knew it was a real copy, and not just a hoax by some fan fic writer. It reminds me of J. K. Rowling and the "carpet book" leak. She just made a general comment about being leery of spoilers, and let everyone buy her last Harry Potter book before they found out that the leak was indeed real. If Stephenie Meyer hadn't confirmed it, many people would still be wondering if it was authentic or just someone's idea of a joke. If it was a theft, she made it a moot point by putting it up on her site after the original flurry of interest.

    It also begs the question of why, if she keeps insisting she writes for herself, is she so hung up on what the fans think and do? I used to admire this woman. But after Breaking Dawn, I think she's a complete idiot.

     

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    MeganBear, Sep 5th, 2008 @ 6:54am

    Honestly I think that her publishers refuse to publish it now and THAT is why she is being such a whiny brat.

     

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    LostSailor, Sep 5th, 2008 @ 8:20am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    PaulT:

    Well, in the interests of pushing the Wall O'Text in threaded view so far off the screen, it's in Alaska where Sarah Palin can drill it for oil....!

    She's not decided not to write another book, she's decided to *stop writing the one she was already working on*. Big difference here.

    Actually, I see only a small semantic difference. To me, writing a book involves actually finishing it (otherwise you're just writing some chapters). If her artistic impetus is so compromised, something only she can decide, to the extent that she can't finish the novel, it's essentially the same thing.

    But, I'm sure my reaction would be to plough on regardless and finish the thing, not go and sulk.

    Which is great. And absolutely your decision to make. But the attitude of Mike's post and responses here seem to be belittling Meyer's decision as stupid, hurtful, petulant, "a tantrum" (as if she is a child), and a punishment meted out to her readers. My point is that you may disagree with her decision and many may be disappointed by it, but it's not anyone's decision to make other than Meyer's.

    I know this is a tech forum, where the prevailing attitude toward digital distribution is that it should be free and easy, that artists (and publishing and distribution companies) should embrace the new model. And that copying files, even if technically illegal, is really a minor thing and no one should get upset about it. But it's not really up to the copiers to decide whether the artist should be upset and the attitude seems just a little self-serving: I want my music/video/movies/games/vampire-chick-lit and I probably don't want to pay for it (or pay much) and it's so easy to make copies, and it's not really actually "taking" something, and it is the wave of the future, so it shouldn't be illegal, and really isn't, so don't get upset.

    That's arguable. Is she a full-time professional writer? I believe she is. If so, how can she afford to work on the books full time and still pay rent, food, etc., without having to hold other jobs?

    Actually, she was a mom that started writing and met with success. "Full-time professional writer" probably doesn't fit the bill. Wikipedia says she got $750K for the first three books, so I imagine she's got a substantial advance for the recently released fourth as well as royalties. She's married and I believe her husband works, so monetary motives for completing the novel don't seem to be an issue (and even if they were, might not have changed her mind; everyone's different).

    Whether or not you believe that the sense of entitlement they hold is justified, she does owe them some debt of gratitude for making her current lifestyle possible.

    Sure she owes them a debt of gratitude and she's been quite effusively appreciative in interviews I saw earlier this summer. She owes the fans a hearty "thank you!" but she doesn't owe them another book. Whether this will make market success for other books she might write more difficult, I can't say, and that's really her business.

    They're not under any obligation to do that, of course, but that's the nature of the entertainment industry.

    If there is any implied obligation on the part of the author to meet the fan's demands for a new book, I was just wondering if there is any reciprocal obligation. Kind of a rhetorical questions anyway as I don't think anyone would recognize any obligation on the part of the fan. And I don't see any real obligation on the part of the author.

    Cheers.

     

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    LostSailor, Sep 5th, 2008 @ 8:48am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    Mostly because it doesn't really make sense to equate copyright infringement with theft. They're two separate offenses.

    As I've pointed out above, I never said they were identical. What I have said is that in certain circumstances, copying a digital file can be both copyright infringement and theft. The argument here is that it can never be theft; I disagree, as do the statutes of many if not all U.S. states.

    Theft is the taking of someone else's property. Taking someone else's property would naturally result in them being deprived of it. Copying is not taking; copying is copying, and no deprivation of property occurs.

    Most theft statutes recognize both tangible and intangible property and, in the computer age, also recognize that, in certain circumstances, copying of digital files constitutes theft.

    And in Dowling v. United States, the majority decision drew a distinction between infringement and theft

    I have read Dowling and I have never argued that there isn't a distinction. As with most Supreme Court decisions, the ruling is a little more nuanced that just saying copying music isn't theft. In the section you quote, note that they are talking about theft of copyright. Also, the decision was based on an interpretation of a federal statute regarding the interstate transportation of stolen goods; theft statutes are usually state matters.

    I'd also point you to the dissenting opinion that makes a good argument that copying of music is indeed theft under the statute that the court considered. I'd also note that the case was decided in 1985 and both technology and law have changed quite a bit since then. In the Guns N' Roses leak case mentioned in other posts, the statute under which the leaker was arrested specifically makes copying of digital music a felony theft and most state laws have been updated since the 80s to include theft of digital property a crime.

    Once again, not all copying is theft, but it certainly can be under certain circumstances.

     

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    LostSailor, Sep 5th, 2008 @ 9:02am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    By copying a digital file, you deprive the rightful owner of nothing.

    Depends on who the owner is and the nature of the file you copied. That said, and as I've noted elsewhere, I'm not saying that all copying is theft, but it can be. If I'm working on a musical masterpiece that I think will revolutionize rock music and before I'm done with it, you manage to make a copy only for personal use, it may or may not be theft depending on how you obtained the copy. If you only listen to it yourself, I may not be deprived of any benefit of my ownership.

    If you distribute that copy, however, I may definitely be deprived of a major benefit of ownership, including commercial exploitation of my property. My masterpiece wasn't finished and premature distribution may sour the market for the finished property, in which case you have stolen potential commercial benefits of that property from me. You may argue that my music sucks and there is no commercial benefit so I've lost nothing, but your theft has made the argument moot; we'll never know because your illegal actions have already altered the market.

    It may seem a trivial point, but it may not be trivial to the property owner.

    But, it's a far, far more minor issue that stealing something, and so the words "theft" and "stealing" should not be used to describe it.

    Folks who advocate freer digital distribution models may want to color illegal copying as a minor matter, since it's to their benefit to do so. They may think artists who object are ignorant and stupid, but--and again depending on the circumstances--theft and stealing may be the exactly correct words to use.

    Forget the legal semantics (most laws are woefully inadequate to describe digital activities of any type to begin with). they are two totally different things and should be considered accordingly.

    Laws may be inadequate, but they're still laws. And semantics are the lifeblood of law. I agree that infringement and theft are two separate things, but that's not the same as saying that a single act of copying cannot be both infringement and theft.

     

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    Mr. Alice, Sep 5th, 2008 @ 10:22am

    Here's what I don't get- this is NOT a digital file copying issue that's being discussed here. And while I trust that LostSailer knows his stuff, what is being ignored is that SM willingly allowed a group of people to have copies of Midnight Sun. One of those copies *may* have fallen into the wrong hands. J.K. Rowling managed to protect Harry Potter #7 well enough and that had WAY more demand than SM's works ever will. It was just sloppy of SM to let that happen. I'm not saying she deserves it but, honestly, her agent and/or publisher should have had some say in it. I don't know if MS was part of a publishing contract or it was just an independent project of SM's that she may have eventually given to her publisher but, either way, you don't give out manuscript's like that and expect them to stay under lock and key. And if they fall into the wrong hands, you certainly don't throw an e-hissy fit online, pout and state that you're "too upset to continue". That's just self-indulgent, childish and unprofessional. My theory is that she's just so unhappy that her fans didn't like BD that she got stuck on MS and, at the moment, she can't finish it because she's being crushed with negative criticism. Writers block sucks but it usually doesn't inspire such pettiness..unless you're a diva who can't take responsibility for your work like SM.

     

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    LostSailor, Sep 5th, 2008 @ 12:07pm

    Re:

    Actually, it is a digital copying issue in that copies of a draft of the partial manuscript were copied on the internet without the author's permission. Since it hadn't been submitted to the publisher, it's not the publisher's problem. I noted in a post above that I, too, initially thought it was somehow swiped, copied and posted, but that was not the case, and Meyer has posted the entire partial manuscript on her web site but is not apparently planning on finishing it. She's also posted an explanation of how the leak happened.

    Authors frequently provide copies of a work-in-progress to a few trusted people to read and provide feedback. As Meyer noted on her site, writing isn't like math and I don't see where she's been self-indulgent, childish, or unprofessional.

     

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    J. W. Coffey, Sep 5th, 2008 @ 12:14pm

    A Rethink Is In Order

    She might also want to take a page out of Diana Gabaldon's book and give her fans bits and pieces from her WIPs (Works In Progress). Whether she uses them or not in the final book, Ms. Gabaldon keeps her fans satisfied and patient for that next book--mostly because it takes her about 2 - 3 years to write it. It certainly drums up more interest.

    I can understand Ms. Meyer's reaction--it was a betrayal of trust. But instead of blaming the victim, we should be blaming the one who leaked the manuscript. I'm sure it was for the purest of reasons, but it was still wrong. It was still stealing something that didn't belong to him/her.

    I agree that the book will come out. IMHO, this was a knee jerk reaction and if we give her time, she's going to be missing that world that she's created. She'll be missing it a great deal...enough to want to dive back in the pool. She'll go back to it. The book will come out. And we'll wait as patiently as we can.

     

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    Me, Sep 6th, 2008 @ 5:39pm

    Childish, yes.

    Oh dear god, the way Stephenie Meyer is acting, it's just CHILDISH. I mean, punishing her fans? And I'm sure as hell not a 'true fan' because I seriously would NOT buy a copy of Midnight Sun. From what I read on the internet due to the leak, going into Edwards' head wasn't great. To say the least, it just made me hate him.

    He's probably the one that put Alice up to doing wardrope changes on Bella for gods sake.

    The way Meyer described Midnight Sun (WITHOUT THE HYPE) it was going to be like a new bible, a way to "see how Edward thinks" and my god, it was practially like Bella.

    She's a horrible writer, and a child for having such a hissy fit.

     

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  81.  
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    stephenie meyer book lover!, Sep 6th, 2008 @ 8:08pm

    oh no

    ugh! stuff the guy who spoilt the 5th book!!!!!!!!!!

    I can understand how Stephenie meyer can be so depressed and all but I REEEEAAAALLY wish that she will get over her depression and get on with her book. I mean its not the end of the world or anything! All my friends are reading her books and we all think that stephenie meyer is way better than J.K rowling!!!

    So I just wanna say...damn the stupid leaker..... and stephenie meyer PLEEEEEEAAAAASE get on with your book besides whats it gonna do if you just leave it, its just gonna allll go to waste!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    From a fan and written on
    behalf of all other peoples who
    think the same as me!^^

     

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  82.  
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    stephenie meyer book lover!, Sep 6th, 2008 @ 8:11pm

    R U serious

    ugh! stuff the guy who spoilt the 5th book!!!!!!!!!!

    I can understand how Stephenie meyer can be so depressed and all but I REEEEAAAALLY wish that she will get over her depression and get on with her book. I mean its not the end of the world or anything! All my friends are reading her books and we all think that stephenie meyer is way better than J.K rowling!!!

    So I just wanna say...damn the stupid leaker..... and stephenie meyer PLEEEEEEAAAAASE get on with your book besides whats it gonna do if you just leave it, its just gonna allll go to waste!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    From a fan and written on
    behalf of all other peoples who
    think the same as me!^^

     

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  83.  
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    stephenie meyer book lover!, Sep 6th, 2008 @ 8:12pm

    hi St charles,6M!!!

    ugh! stuff the guy who spoilt the 5th book!!!!!!!!!!

    I can understand how Stephenie meyer can be so depressed and all but I REEEEAAAALLY wish that she will get over her depression and get on with her book. I mean its not the end of the world or anything! All my friends are reading her books and we all think that stephenie meyer is way better than J.K rowling!!!

    So I just wanna say...damn the stupid leaker..... and stephenie meyer PLEEEEEEAAAAASE get on with your book besides whats it gonna do if you just leave it, its just gonna allll go to waste!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    From a fan and written on
    behalf of all other peoples who
    think the same as me!^^

     

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  84.  
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    Vampirelover, Sep 8th, 2008 @ 5:11pm

    Midnight Sun

    I can understand Stephanie Meyer being upset,I really can. We were going to read it when she was finished with it anyway,we will still buy it to see how it ends. She says it was riddled with flaws but all I saw was the beauty of the story.Seeing the story from Edwards point of view just turns it into a completely different story. I was glued to those 12 chapters until I had read every line and I have read it four more times since then. This version of the story is so INTENSE and Passionate. I don't know how many times I felt my heart stop as I was reading,it was like I was the one falling in love. It would not only be an injustice to her very loyal fans not to pick up where she left off as soon as possible but it would also be an injustice to herself not to finish such a beautiful well told side of the story.I am not a teenager either,I am a 30 year old mother of four so that should send her a message that EVERYONE loves the magic she weaves.

     

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  85.  
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    webb_woman, Sep 14th, 2008 @ 10:00am

    Stephanie Meyer

    I love the Twilight series. I can't get enough of Bella and Edward. After finishing "Breaking Dawn" I was ready to read the first book again. I was elated to find "Midnight Sun" on her website and spent the next few nights on my computer reading it. Yes, I would still buy the book when it comes out and read it again. I know she is upset because the book was leaked but the whole series is not an original idea anyway. If you doubt that read "Jane Eyre" by Charlotte Bronte. She even takes the names of her characters from the novel. Stephanie's books modernize the story and add original details, but basically the story is the same. Regardless, I still love this series and would buy anything she puts out.

     

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  86.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 17th, 2008 @ 11:21pm

    gah you people are horribly mean, yes you guys think she had her tantrum, but you know, would you be able to write what you love in anger? That's like loving a kitten, then you get yelled at, how does that make you feel?? Does that make you want to stab something close to you???
    Would you stab a kitty

    well, poor example, but still...let the woman be...let her be angry, when she calms down, she will write. OR if you guys keep this nonsense up, she may never write EVER AGAIN.


    OH, ode to the CG, AZ!

     

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  87.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Sep 23rd, 2008 @ 2:57pm

    TOTALLY! i couldnt live without the 5th!!!!

     

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  88.  
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    Stephanie, Sep 28th, 2008 @ 3:25pm

    the 5th book

    i understand how she feels she wanted it to be a surprise, but we love her books ands its terrible to give us the 1st couple of chapters and leave us hanging i would read the book if he changed all the chapters that leaked out 2 completely different things because i love Edward and Bella and if i could find a address 2 write 2 her at i know at least 40 or 50 people who would tell her we dont care it leaked out we'll love it just the same

     

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  89.  
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    Sarah, Sep 28th, 2008 @ 10:40pm

    It wasn't the FIFTH

    It wasn't the FIFTH book that got leaked - there is NO fifth book. The series ended at the fourth. Midnight Sun was meant to be a companion book to the first book.

    Get your facts straight.

     

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  90.  
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    just a girl, Oct 2nd, 2008 @ 2:37pm

    get over it

    Crap happens, life goes on, so Stephenie get over it! I thought that midnight sun was going to be so much better then her other books, because Edward's story was so much better then Bella's. A an adult and woman Bella is an idiot!

     

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  91.  
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    Ellie, Oct 8th, 2008 @ 12:16pm

    I wish I hadnt read it

    I went on Stephanie's site and downloaded her draft chapters. I read them and now I wish I hadn't. What a sad thing... a book with no ending. Its like taking a bottle from a hungry baby. :o(

     

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  92.  
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    New to Twilight, Oct 8th, 2008 @ 12:29pm

    Midnight Sun

    I have just recently discovered the Twilight series and am glad that I did not have to withstand the torture of waiting for the next book to be released! I read through all 4 in just a week while working full time, taking care of the house, etc. COULD NOT PUT THEM DOWN!!! It was a sad day that I finished book 4 and realized there was no more. I agree that regardless of what was leaked, I MUST have Midnight Sun and pray whole heartedly that she releases it. True fans will JUST HAVE to have it...there is no other option.

     

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  93.  
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    New to Twilight, Oct 8th, 2008 @ 12:33pm

    Re:

    While you are entitled to your own opinion, didn't your mother ever tell you that if you cannot say something nice, don't say anything at all? You are definetely in the minority opinion.

     

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  94.  
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    Open minded, Oct 8th, 2008 @ 7:34pm

    Ok sometimes a little imagination is required in life to escape the stresses of reality. I can admit that the classic vampire novels are unbelievable. But sometimes, we as humans, need a tiny bit of change in what we read about. Especially when it comes to the mythical creatures such as vampires, werewolves, witches, gouls, etc. Stephanie Meyer gives us a kick in the butt contradicting our thoughts on those basic creatures. No more sharp fangs, full moons, and flying brooms. In the least to say, she's simply making improvements on the mythical world we tell about in scary stories.

     

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  95.  
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    Kora, Oct 8th, 2008 @ 7:42pm

    Re: Midnight Sun

    I can totally agree to that!!! At first I wasn't into the whole vampire thing. But now? I keep re reading it and re-reading it!!!! I have to say, for me, it's like a drug. It's addicting!!! LOL

     

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  96.  
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    open minded, Oct 9th, 2008 @ 3:10pm

    Re: Childish, yes.

    Ok really? Technically it's the exact same story as Bella's, but from another point of view. Who ever said it was going to be a whole different story, Edward's point of view, was wrong. Midnight Sun is being created to acompany the book Twilight. Seriously, can you have some type of understanding? Empathy? Or do you think you can write better novels that can grab a readers attention and make them want more? If you do then I'd love to read one of them. I don't like to judge people that I don't know but I will be honest.

     

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  97.  
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    Once a fan always a fan, Oct 9th, 2008 @ 3:28pm

    Endings

    Ok, we all have our versions of "happy endings" right? Well as an author don't you think you can put your own type of happy ending in? Yes, and if the readers don't like it then too bad. That's what Stephanie Meyer did. We all hate an ending of a story that we get attached to. We as fans, readers, etc. just can't get enough. We all have to relize that the series had to end, and when it did, we didn't like it. I have to admit that the ending of the series wasn't the best. But it left me content and understanding. I have no argument at what she had written in the end because to me it was a happy ending. No one was left out and it pretty much gave me that sense of closure. If anyone has any objections then please speak up. I'm open for negotiation on my side. But so far I'm sticking to the "Fan" side of this and I will defend what I believe.

     

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  98.  
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    mkemoore_1@netzero.net, Oct 10th, 2008 @ 4:44pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Nothing to do with

    UGH!! thank you! im so gald you think stephanie myer is being so diva-ish!!!its SOOOO annoying. i luv her books but seriosly, is she that conceted? ugh. i dnt thnk ill by anymore of her books. even if she decides to write midnight sun she totall ruined my view and opinion of her!

     

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  99.  
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    Porter Causes, Jan 8th, 2009 @ 3:02pm

    Re: I would be hurt too.

    She did say that the book is on hold indefinitely. Indefinitely means what???

     

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  100.  
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    patience is a virtue, Jan 13th, 2009 @ 1:24pm

    The book being on hold indefinitely can mean for years, months, days, etc. But the more we, the fans, push Mrs. Meyer to finish writing the book the longer it's going to take. We are all craving more of the "Twilight" Saga, or atleast all the die hard fans. With me being one of them, I know I can wait. If everyone could respect Mrs. Meyer and her wishes then that's being a little too obbsessed. A writer is at his/her best when she is in the right mood, zone, or environment. With things going the way they are at the moment, especially with the movies, this should buy her a little more time to come out with "Midnight Sun." If everyone could be patient then, eventually, we'll all get what we want.

     

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  101.  
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    Alexis, Mar 16th, 2009 @ 9:59pm

    stephenie is my life

    She's awesome! but she oughta keep writing books like a sitcom u know? endless novels oughta be her way since I will totally die of heartache if bella and edward end. She writes so well it reminds me of Garcia Marquez's "Love in the Time of Cholera" an excellent choice for spanish american literature of the classic century. Not to mention the fact it clashes penury and lavish wealth the way any tragic love story oughta go.

     

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  102.  
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    Alexis, Mar 16th, 2009 @ 10:00pm

    stephenie is my life

    She's awesome! but she oughta keep writing books like a sitcom u know? endless novels oughta be her way since I will totally die of heartache if bella and edward end. She writes so well it reminds me of Garcia Marquez's "Love in the Time of Cholera" an excellent choice for spanish american literature of the classic century. Not to mention the fact it clashes penury and lavish wealth the way any tragic love story oughta go.

     

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  103.  
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    Rowan Mayfair, Apr 21st, 2009 @ 1:49pm

    Stephanie is a dissapointment....

    Yess shes a diva..what bullshit..getting upset that the supposed 5th book was leaked. She should be grateful for the publicity.

    Who does she think she is, an accomplished writer like Twain, or Tolstoy??? YOU WRITE FLUF NOVELS.. Come on Stephanie.. get with it and be happy for your success.

    You know they say a writers novel is the mirror into their soul..So I guess you live in a dream world..and cant find love..is that it??

    Your a great writer and I thank you for the escape time you give me when I read.. Just get over it...

     

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  104.  
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    non-ya, May 26th, 2009 @ 8:53pm

    non-ya

    stephanie shouldn't be getting p.o. she should just ignore those people. she should acctually be grateful to them. they showed her how much they admire her work. ofcourse they howed her that. i mean, if someone hacks into your computer to gt your ruff draft of something, you would know they admire yur work alot! they also showed how her fans admire her work. if her fans are going to go through a mistake written paper, then ofcourse they love it! i'm not saying that she has no reason to get p.o. i would to. she should just not get so mad that she'll stop writting for all her adoring fans. i still love her writting though. even if i am a little p.o. i still love her storys. and so do all her other fans. i hope, if you're reading this stephanie, that you take this into serious consideration.

     

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  105.  
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    non-ya, May 26th, 2009 @ 8:56pm

    non-ya

    I probably misspelled a few words, or forgot to put a few letters in some. o well, who doesn't?

     

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  106.  
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    koolark, Nov 23rd, 2011 @ 2:26pm

    Re:

    Dude, I'm a Mormon myself, and I don't know where this nutjob got her belief system from, but it's sure not the one I was raised with. Her crappy books encourage women to be dependent, ignorant, and weak. If my family ever caught me acting like Bella does, they'd send me to a shrink!

     

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  107.  
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    Hawg, Jul 30th, 2012 @ 10:33pm

    Clearly you know nothing about the law and haven't bothered to research any of that which you spew. I had to actually stop reading your rantings because I was embarrassed for you, like that uncomfortable feeling when someone gets up and sings at a company Christmas party and they're reeeeally bad. You're either bias or a wanna-be journalist that feels the need to sensationalize. And no, I do not work for Summit, and I couldn't care less one way or the other about the Twilight franchise. You're just...oi, it's painful to read.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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