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Old 05-30-2016, 04:41 PM   #1
bathop
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Kobo should be incapable to prevent the publishing of a stolen epub?

Read the epub 'A short history...'.

I know, this is not the first case. But I think we have to examine the question in each case and to make up our mind.

It seems that the problem needs some more discussion.
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Old 05-30-2016, 05:22 PM   #2
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Old 05-30-2016, 11:04 PM   #3
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First, if you want to discuss something here in the forums, don't do it as an attached ebook, most people are going to ignore the attachment.

Since this is a public domain book, if it contains no additional material, like an author biography or some prefatory content discussing the context of the work, anybody is allowed to make a copy of the work and charge whatever they want for it. However, I believe some European countries may have some sort of 25 year layout copyright which probably covers things like CSS or prevents someone from creating a print copy with exactly the same pages as another print copy. If the person creating the epub is from the US, that wouldn't apply. I think MobileRead is located in the EU, so if the person listing it at Kobo is from the EU and that layout copyright valid across the entire EU, you might be able to get Kobo to take it down for EU countries.

Project Gutenberg ebooks contain credits, information about Project Gutenberg and the license under which people can use their works, and it basically says if you leave in the Project Gutenberg bits, there are additional consideration, but if you strip off the Project Gutenberg bits, you can do whatever you want. There are a lot of ebooks sold at Kobo, Amazon, B&N, etc. which originated at MobileRead, PG, and other public domain websites. There's really nothing you can do about it except maybe post a review that it's free here, and maybe that it's a better edition (include why if you do so). Open Road Media gives away a free PD ebook every day. I noticed the freebie from a day or two ago was recently released at PG with a nice illustrated edition, and the ORM edition had no illustrations. Now I'm tempted to go to Amazon, etc. and post a review.
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Old 05-30-2016, 11:18 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bathop View Post
Read the epub 'A short history...'.

I know, this is not the first case. But I think we have to examine the question in each case and to make up our mind.

It seems that the problem needs some more discussion.
So... discuss it? I'm not downloading your attachment.
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Old 05-31-2016, 07:27 AM   #5
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I have downloaded and read the epub. But why don't you post its contents here, bathop? It isn't that much text, after all.

And, as bgalbrecht has said, there isn't really much you can do about others using your epubs if they just contain PD text. Kbook used to steal the original covers as well, and there you might have a handle if you designed the cover yourself. Now they use a generic cover, but if they still keep the original cover inside the epub, this might be something you could complain about.

Apart from that, I think writing reviews is the only option you have. I tried that for a while, but gave up. Too much hassle. I almost started again when I saw that they are selling my George Darley edition, but then I thought the author is so obscure that I'd be surprised if they even sold a single copy.
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Old 06-01-2016, 04:09 PM   #6
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Is Kobo publishing PD books now? Or are people self-publishing PD books through Kobo?
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Old 06-01-2016, 05:06 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ottdmk View Post
Is Kobo publishing PD books now? Or are people self-publishing PD books through Kobo?
Kobo links to Gutenberg and Internet Archive books. And people have been publishing PD books through Kobo for a long time. The most "productive" publisher at the moment is Kbook, who must be scraping the net up and down and slap their cover on anything PD they can find, including the MR library.
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Old 06-01-2016, 05:28 PM   #8
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Am I reading this post right?
The OP is saying someone stole a public domain book and put it up for sale on Kobo???
Last I heard, anyone can sell a public domain book.
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Old 06-01-2016, 05:37 PM   #9
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Last I heard, anyone can sell a public domain book.
Indeed they can. It's still a rip-off in my book if someone takes ebooks as they are, layout, cover and all, from the MR library and takes money for the exact same books that they got for free here. But as I said, the only thing you can really do is post reviews pointing to the original source.
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Old 06-01-2016, 06:13 PM   #10
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I'm amused by the title of this thread... Surely "Kobo should be incapable to prevent the publishing of a stolen epub?" means they should allow it to be published?
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Old 06-01-2016, 07:27 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doubleshuffle View Post
Indeed they can. It's still a rip-off in my book if someone takes ebooks as they are, layout, cover and all, from the MR library and takes money for the exact same books that they got for free here. But as I said, the only thing you can really do is post reviews pointing to the original source.
Yes, that is very tacky.
I didn't realize MR books had covers.
Shouldn't the cover be copyrighted in itself?
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Old 06-02-2016, 02:22 AM   #12
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Indeed they can. It's still a rip-off in my book if someone takes ebooks as they are, layout, cover and all, from the MR library and takes money for the exact same books that they got for free here. But as I said, the only thing you can really do is post reviews pointing to the original source.
The owners of mobileread benefit monetarily off the MR library too, in the form of increased footfalls and ad-views.
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Old 06-02-2016, 04:17 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by howyoudoin View Post
The owners of mobileread benefit monetarily off the MR library too, in the form of increased footfalls and ad-views.
I know. And yet the users who are interested in the books I upload here get them for free. And that's the reason I put many hours of work into them. (Of course we could have a philosophical discussion if ad-financed content is really free etc.)
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Old 06-02-2016, 05:27 AM   #14
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I know. And yet the users who are interested in the books I upload here get them for free. And that's the reason I put many hours of work into them. (Of course we could have a philosophical discussion if ad-financed content is really free etc.)
Yeah, I don't mean to diminish the value of the work put in by contributors to the MR library. My point pertains to the the owners of MR as equivalent parties to the Amazon 'repackagers'.

It's a question of the degree to which 'middlemen' are justified. Just as the individuals selling PD works on Amazon are middlemen deriving benefit from what they consider as value added (minor formatting, if any, and the ease of access and cloud benefits from posting the books on Amazon, assuming there are no copyrights being infringed upon) on their end, the owners of MR can also be considered as middlemen benefiting indirectly from PD works posted on their website due to value added by their 'unpaid employees' (the contributors to the MR library, again assuming there are no copyrights being infringed upon).

The former benefit from direct payments, and the latter benefit indirectly through greater footfalls and increased ad revenue.

Last edited by howyoudoin; 06-02-2016 at 05:31 AM.
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Old 06-02-2016, 08:06 AM   #15
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The owners of mobileread benefit monetarily off the MR library too, in the form of increased footfalls and ad-views.
A standardized page at the end of books in the MobileRead - Patricia Clark Memorial Library indicating that the book was sourced from there would turn this sort of copying into free advertising for our community. Of course it is too late for books already copied and it would be a lot of work to update all of the existing books, but it would be easy for new and updated books.
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