So there’s news of a pirate site going around writerly circles today, spreading faster that gossip. There’s nothing that gets writers whose work is published primarily electronically angrier than e-book pirates. They’re stealing from us, plain and simple, so what we usually prefer to see happen is for those responsible to be held down and Garden Weaseled for a few years. Don’t pretend you don’t remember what those are.
Well, today I learned about one that’s even more diabolical. Mostly I use that word ironically, and while I don’t truly mean this outfit is satanic, I do have to wonder. Outwardly, Fantastic e-Books claims to be selling electronic copies of books from not only today’s hottest authors, but also schmucks like me as well as people who’ve been out of print for years (first tip off that something’s not right–publishers, which are barely getting the message about e-books now, certainly didn’t put out electronic copies of books published before I was born–1970 if any of you care).
As it turns out, they’re not actually selling pirated books. No, they’re using the promise of those books as bait to steal people’s PayPal information. I don’t like being used as bait. Of course, the so-called victims of this scam were trying to buy pirated copies of books, in my case, First Impressions, so my levels of sympathy for them are so vanishingly small as to be extra-dimensional.
Oh, and the servers for this outfit are hosted abroad so that cease and desist letter I sent? It’s as useful as tits on a tomcat.
So the moral of the story, kiddies, is that you can’t get something for (close to) nothing, and if someone tells you that you can, there’s a good chance s/he’s a grifter. I like that word, grifter. I just wanted to say it. Grifter.