Website Alerts Authors and Publishers If Their Work Is Stolen

Share Article launches to combat online piracy of eBooks. The simple to use interface lets users quickly upload books and set how often they want to monitor the Internet for instances of plagiarism.

PiracyTrace--Protecting Intellectual Property.

While most eBook retailers claim to have some kind of monitoring system in place to protect from piracy, books slip through the cracks everyday.

eBook plagiarism is on the rise. A January 16, 2012, FastCompany article revealed several bestselling Kindle authors had actually just stolen the content and changed the name of the book. While most eBook retailers claim to have some kind of monitoring system in place to protect from piracy, books slip through the cracks everyday.

While there have been several stories about self-published writers stealing material, the Internet age has made copying more accessible and easy for even the most seasoned writers. On June 23, 2009, The Virginia Quarterly Review reported, a Wired Magazine editor was caught copying Wikipedia entries in his book “Free: The Future of a Radical Price”; on February 16, 2010, The Times reported that one of their reporters had resigned because he was caught plagiarizing the Wall Street Journal and several other sources for his stories. On December 7, 2006, The Washington Post reported that even President Jimmy Carter was accused of plagiarizing in his book, "Palestine Peace Not Apartheid."

In many cases, the problem is simply people--even professionals--don’t know that copying is wrong. If it’s electronic, some people feel it’s fair use. Publishers understand that this is obviously not the case, but tracking down when and if someone has used their work--either on a website, blog, magazine or even as a book--is next to impossible.

The founders of know the problem firsthand because they are publishers themselves; Minute Help Press and BookCaps Study Guides came together to find a solution when they found some of their own work had been copied. Together they have created an interface that is easy to use, reliable, and economical for small and large publishers alike.

“What gave us the most concern,” says co-founder and author of Quiet, Please: Dispatches from a Public Librarian, Scott La Counte, “is when we started hearing from other publishers who had publishing accounts suspended by their distributor because their material was found free on the Internet; in each case, it was posted unauthorized by a person with a spam-type blog hoping to make a quick buck off someone else’s work. Electronic book sellers are doing the bare minimum to protect publishers. We wanted to create something that protected our business and the business of our colleagues.” has subscription plans starting at $1 a month; publishers can be alerted of plagiarism by email on a weekly basis. Publishers also have the option of adjusting the sensitivity of matches.

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Scott La Counte
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