German Book Publishers Plan To Sue Thousands For File Sharing

from the apparently-they've-learned-nothing dept

It’s difficult to believe that anyone could look at the disastrous five years of the RIAA suing fans and think, “hey, we should do that too!” However, that appears to be exactly what some German book publishers have decided. Michael Scott points us to the news that the head of the German book publishers’ assocation has announced plans to “sue thousands” and talked about how file sharing systems were the equivalent of organized crime. He’s also demanding that ISPs implement a three strikes plan. Apparently, he hasn’t discovered that file sharing of books, when done right, can help boost demand for book sales.

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Comments on “German Book Publishers Plan To Sue Thousands For File Sharing”

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Harold's #2 Fan says:


Hey! That’s stealing!

I say you’ve deprived the originator of a digital representation of his work!! Copying those bits and bytes from the interweb slightly weakens the original–this phenomenon is obvious by observing “old books” which have been put online, they’re all bleached and faded. That’s because people are making digital copies!

Stop people from degrading our digital books!!!

ToySouljah says:

Re: Re:

lmao…same here. I’ll download an ebook, but usually end up getting a hard copy since I prefer to read on paper rather than a screen. I like to get a preview or read a few chapters to see if it catches my interest. The only one book I’ve read totally online was “The True Face of God”, but I also ordered a copy to have as part of my library (I also reread it later on as well).

Cheese McBeese says:

Re: Why bother with real books at all

Yes, but not everybody is interested in the Hardy Boys.

MOST quality books that make the bestseller lists are not series. So while your point has merit, it only applies to a small subset of the problem.

HOWEVER your attitude – ‘let’s find a way to make this work’ – is what’s needed. Not lawyers.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: Why bother with real books at all

You obviously have never been to the Baen Free Library. Its not just series there. Its also older books that are currently out of publication. The point is that it gives people a chance to become familiar with the work of authors they might not otherwise read. Its a great idea, and while I would love to see entire series, when I do find a book or two that I like, I will by others editions in a series if they aren’t available there. Hence, by giving access to free copies that aren’t available anywhere else, they are increasing the sales of books that are on the shelves at local book stores.

Travis says:


In my opinion an ebook is more of a supplement than a replacement. I prefer to be able to sit in my bed/chair and read a book, but there are times when a ebook comes in handy. If I want to easily search for something in the book (if it was a technical book, cookbook, etc.) then having the ebook is really nice. But just because I got an ebook for free doesn’t mean I wouldn’t love to have a physical copy.

Corey says:

Re: welcome to the 21st century

Jen, actually what you wrote is why this argument is very relevant. Sure, right now publishers can use free ebooks to promote actual books, but as more and more people turn to ebooks and that becomes the main product, then piracy of ebooks becomes a huge problem. Authors and publishers make money on books. I know Mike will blame them for having a bad business model, but for most authors, especially novelist, there isn’t much else to sell (Sorry Mike, but most people are not interested enough in author reading to pay for them). The result would be most working authors except for the extremely successful few having to get other jobs. The consumer loses because less books will be written.

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