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Myths About Pirated Books

This post was written by Elysia
on January 5, 2012 | Comments (132)

old edition of Big BlueToday I got five emails from authors all alerting me to a website that had 32 of our books and an equal number of other publishers’ books on it, scanned in and uploaded as PDFs for anyone to freely download. If it sounds like harmless sharing to you, please read this post and educate yourself on pirating.

First, the background: people loves to steal our books. Libraries and bookstores have claimed for years that some of their most frequently stolen stock are the religious books – anything from the Bible to those on witchcraft and magic. Whether this comes from a belief that all sacred knowledge should be free, a desire to hold onto a book containing so much wisdom (or so many exercises that can’t all be gotten through in the three-week lending period!), or, in the case of witchcraft books, concern that others in their small community might find out that the reader has an interest in these topics, and thus be “outed,” it’s always seemed a little strange anyway. If you’re specifically looking for a book on spirituality, doesn’t that imply that you’re trying to make yourself a better person? In that case, why start off on the wrong foot by stealing a book?

With this pattern having been in place for years, it should shock no one that in the digital age this would quickly translate over to stealing spirituality ebooks in any form. The music industry has wrestled with illegal downloads for years – we all know there are file sharing programs and sites that easily circumvent established means of distribution.

This is what a copyright notice looks like, stupid pirater.

The website I was sent multiple times today is a repeat offender. I won’t post a link here because I don’t want to drive traffic to her site. Let’s just say that she has a nifty little disclaimer about how she got all these PDFs of ebooks off the internet (presumably absolving herself of responsibility, having not scanned them in herself) and that as far as she knows they are not violating anyone’s copyright. And if she is in error, to please let her know. (I guess there was something about the COPYRIGHT PAGE of each of our books that she failed to understand.)

Llewellyn, Red Wheel/Weiser, and other publishers have notified this person, by writing to the email address listed on the website, several times. And yet that notice is still up, and our books are still there for illegal downloading. So today (after the very first email I received) we sent a DCMA takedown notice to her ISP, and hopefully those pages of her website will be removed soon. [Update: it looks like it’s working. I’ll check again from home, and again tomorrow.]

But since I kept hearing about it all day, regardless of our invisible-to-the-outside-world actions (which are things we deal with every day, incidentally), I wanted to post a few thoughts for you all to consider and hopefully discuss.


“It doesn’t cost them anything to make an ebook, so why should I pay for it?”

This one I’ve also heard for legal, paid downloads, except in that case it goes “It doesn’t cost them anything to make an ebook, so why should I pay a normal book price for it? It should cost only $1.99/[insert your own price here]. I mean, I even had to buy a device to read it in the first place.”

Here’s the thing. First of all, an author wrote that book. They spent hundreds of hours researching, writing, editing, proofing, revising, communicating with their publisher, and in many cases, teaching, lecturing, writing a blog, marketing, etc. in order to have their good name in the field, in order for their manuscript to be desirable for publication. So that’s one person that should be paid for their effort.

Secondly, multiple people are involved in publishing a good book:

  • the editor who carefully selects, acquires, contracts and develops it (that’s me, in this case),
  • the editors who copy edit and proof it (the production editor, layout designer, and proofreader),
  • the marketing team that writes the back cover copy, web copy, catalog copy, and so on,
  • the cover designer who created a cover,
  • the publicity team that sends out a press release, galley, or review copy to your favorite Pagan podcaster,
  • the accounting staff who send out the royalty checks and pay our bills,
  • the IT department that converts our book files to ePub formats and keeps our websites and servers running.

These are all fixed costs, whether the book comes out in print or digital (unless the author is self-published, in which case he or she can have more control over the pricing of the book and also gets to keep more of the profit). If you add a print release (not digital-only) then you can add the sales staff, customer service, and the warehouse crew. Basically the only thing you’re taking out of the entire equation by downloading an ebook is the cost of paper, printing, and distribution (trucking, shipping, etc.), and the people who make sure the physical copies get sent to the customers, whether those are bookstores or people. So are you still so convinced that your ebook should only cost a dollar? Or nothing?

“It’s the same as borrowing a book from a library, or from a friend.”

Um, except for the fact that the library bought a copy of the book, or your friend bought a copy of the book. (Even libraries that now do digital lending.) And that they have a finite number of copies (physical or digital) that they are able to lend out at any given time – not a file that can be downloaded over and over again in the blink of an eye by complete strangers all over the world.

Let me put it this way – surely you would lend $10 to a friend in need. But would you put up your PayPal account details on the internet for the world to see with a note that says “hey, feel free to borrow ten bucks”? If you did, I’m guessing you’d go broke immediately, unless you have some very deep pockets.

“But publishers have very deep pockets.”

Maybe some do – but I’ve never worked for a publisher that does. We’re talking about Pagan books here. It’s a niche. We hope to sell 5,000 copies if the book is to be successful. (And, not to shake your confidence in the system or anything, but some of our books only sell hundreds of copies and we don’t make a dime.) We are not selling Harry Potter here! We are not flying our authors around on world tours or taking them out for three-martini lunches! Being an independent, midsized publisher in a small field is not a license to print money.

Here is a great quote to illustrate the situation, written by Colin Robinson, who formerly worked for a large New York publisher:

Books have always been a low-profit item and in recent years margins have been shrinking even further. Publishers now regularly give bookshops a 50 per cent or even a 55 per cent discount on the retail price. The distributor that warehouses and delivers the book will typically take 10 per cent of what remains, or more if you are a small publisher; 15 per cent goes on production (printing, paper, typesetting). Add another 10 per cent for the author’s royalties and the publisher is left with 10 per cent to cover promotion costs, rent and office expenses, wages – and profit. No wonder it’s called the gentleman’s profession.

“But authors have deep pockets.”

While you wait for me to stop laughing, did you notice the author’s royalty in the quote above? It’s not much, and it can actually be even less depending on the genre, the format of publishing, and a variety of other factors. Authors don’t have deep pockets either – they cannot afford to give you their book for free. If they could, they would! (And some actually have, just as many musicians are now releasing their music and letting their fans decide what to pay for it.)

Most authors support themselves with full-time jobs in addition to writing and enriching their communities. The very few who don’t work a “day job” have to tour and teach constantly to make a salary to live off of. Some even sell potions, spells, or courses on the internet to add a little income. And yet they still provide plenty of free content on their websites, blogs, facebook pages and other media. They are more than willing to share – up to a point. If they approach a publisher to publish their book, it means, by default, that they want to get paid for it. It has value. So do them a favor and buy their book if you appreciate their work and want to make sure that they continue to write for, communicate with, and teach the community in the future.

“But it’s all over the internet anyway…”

Go ahead and read all the free blog posts you want. Learn about Wicca by putting together information from ten different websites. Go ahead and search for that certain spell you need on Google. Not sure what to do for next month’s full moon? Just type it into the search box. Go onto the Internet Sacred Text Archive or Patheos and learn about the world’s religions. These are all perfectly valid ways to get information. There are TONS of free resources on the internet – ones that are given freely by their creators. (Perhaps because they have ad revenue they can rely on. Perhaps they just do it out of the goodness of their heart.) So why do people even feel the need to download whole books in the first place? By wanting to download a book more than you want to read a website or blog (etc.), you are admitting that it has a certain value that is greater than what you can browse for free. The sum is greater than its parts. So please, pay for it.

“But I’m poor, I can’t afford to buy these books myself…”

See the above list of free resources. And visit your local library.

“But I wasn’t even sure I would like it, so why pay money on it?”

In today’s book-buying world, that is no longer an excuse. You can get previews of just about any books online, either at Amazon, GoogleBooks, or the publisher’s own website. You can browse reviews from other readers on GoodReads or other retailers’ websites. You can visit the author’s website or blog and see if you like their writing style or agree with their ideas. You can ask your facebook friends if they ever read the book and would recommend it.

“Information should be free!”

I totally agree, to a point. Information is what permeates the very fabric of the universe; information is as basic and integral to life itself as light, and so far no one is charging for light. Information is heady and exciting. Hermes/Mercury, the god of communication, is also the god of tricksters and thieves, so it’s not unreasonable to expect he’d be encouraging illegal downloads.

However, he is also god of merchants – trading, bartering, and yes, paying for goods and services. If you step back and look at the big picture, information is just a type of energy. And energy is never static, it must be exchanged. Money is also a form of energy – it’s how our minutes and hours of toiling away at something we might not always like get converted into poker chips we can trade in for things we like better. Therefore, it’s not only acceptable to use the energy of money in exchange for the energy of information – it’s divine. Like the universe itself, you are keeping energy in balance, in motion, in an unbroken chain, just as it likes.

Thanks for listening to my rant today. Please, feel free to discuss in the comments… I’m curious to hear your opinions and thoughts on this matter.


Reader Comments

Written By Anastasia Haysler
on January 23rd, 2012 @ 5:06 pm

Elysia – Thank you, thank you! I cannot tell you how many times I have had this argument with people; how many DCMA requests we’ve had to issue; and how many people have told me we should be “flattered that someone liked it enough to pirate it.” If you like it, buy it!

It’s hard enough these days with constant price pressure from people who are accustomed to an automatic discount from shopping Amazon; losing money to pirated copies is an even harder issue, as at least one can deal directly with Amazon for setting some prices.

We’re all connected by the economic benefits of our media production, and we’re all affected by the economic loss of pirating. We have employees, our vendors and retailers have employees, and everyone is just trying to make a living and keep their companies going.

When people tell me we shouldn’t mind the pirated copies “because it can’t cost you that much”, I ask them how they’d like to have their paycheck reduced 30% for doing the same amount of work and have the same amount of bills to pay. That tends to bring the conversation to a halt pretty quickly.

Thanks for a clear and concise posting.

Written By Fae'o
on February 4th, 2012 @ 3:09 am

I personally liked this-
“But I wasn’t even sure I would like it, so why pay money on it?”
‘In today’s book-buying world, that is no longer an excuse. ‘

And to that I would like to add, often, if people are paying attention to what they’re looking for, go to the publisher’s website, Often there will be enough sections one can preview, that you can easily see whether or not it will be of interest to you. And then, as mentioned, the writing styles, and friend recommendations, all that stuff is reason enough to Walk The Talk.

Written By Danya D. Smith
on February 10th, 2012 @ 9:41 am

I have been taught to support with my consumer dollar. If I really love a piece of music, I buy it. If I love an author’s body of work, I buy the new book and don’t worry about the money I spent if it turns out I didn’t like it. I didn’t pay to like something… I paid to read it. I was an early adopter of eBooks and will frequently buy both paper and digital copies of books. I do so not because I’m made of money, but because the different formats offer unique benefits that I’m willing to pay for (though I wish I could buy the book once as a bundle w/ a print copy and multiple digital formats). I also do it to support communities that are dear to me that I want to continue to exist.

There are some really unhealthy attitudes about money and commerce in a lot of spiritual communities, unfortunately. People who have money are often looked upon with suspicion and distrust. There is also the belief that there is something holy and pure about poverty. I say whatev to all of that thinking. Thanks for such an empassioned and constructive post.

Written By neha
on March 19th, 2012 @ 4:19 am

i have received two pirated books when i placed order online.pls suggest what to do.

Written By Theyann PentaGram
on May 4th, 2012 @ 12:00 pm

I say that Knowledge SHOULD and MUST be FREE, however all these (Llewellyn’s) authors must live and have income from somewhere. Furthermore, these authors are researching on various topics so that their readers could read something of pure quality. If a reader do not support their author with PURCHASING the his/her book, who else will?
BUT, I am also for publishing both in PDF for free download and in print for buying a book. I have my books published both ways, and I am happy and satisfied with it.
Many Blessings for All!

Written By Gilbert Warda
on May 8th, 2012 @ 8:11 pm

Don.. Gilbert here from Australia..

I know of the site your are speaking of.

I could not believe how many books are on that page plus videos which I feel is ok.

And your Books Modern Magick + tarot etc..

are very easy to get from 4shared + filestube

It takes under a minute to find them and download on Google.

IF there is one book in my Opinion amongst others that is too good to be free is Modern Magick.

I have emailed you early this year about how I acquired that incredible Book. IF you remember it was out of my budget the day I first saw it. Then a week later the price was marked down because someone or somehow the book was slightly damaged.

Your Student Down Under…


Written By ltooley
on May 19th, 2012 @ 7:01 pm

When Copyright Protection Becomes Public Domain

The data below will let you know when you can safely use a piece of art or music without permission because it is now in public domain after copyright protection expiration, or how long the copyright protection will last.

Published before 1923 – now in public domain

Published from 1923 to 1963 – When published with a copyright notice © or “Copyright [dates] by [author/owner]” – copyright protection lasts 28 years and could be renewed for an additional 67 years for a total of 95 years. If not renewed, now in public domain.

Published from 1923 to 1963 – When published with no notice – now in public domain

Published from 1964 to 1977 – When published with notice – copyright protection lasts 28 years for first term; automatic extension of 67 years for second term for a total of 95 years.

Created before 1/1/1978 but not published – copyright notice is irrelevant – copyright protection lasts for the life of author and 70 years or 12/31/2002, whichever is greater

Created before 1/1/1978 and published between 1/1/1978 and 12/31/2002 – notice is irrelevant – copyright protecion lasts the life of author and 70 years or 12/31/2047, whichever is greater

Created 1/1/1978 or after – When work is fixed in tangible medium of expression – notice is irrelevant – copyright protecion lasts for the life of author and 70 years based on the the longest living author if jointly created or if work of corporate authorship, works for hire, or anonymous and pseudonymous works, the shorter of 95 years from publication, or 120 years from creation.

Written By mist42nz
on May 30th, 2012 @ 2:15 am

information is and should be free.
books are not – books are work – work is not free.

You want free information, harvest it yourself. Don’t steal anothers’ harvest.

Written By Lori
on June 4th, 2012 @ 10:49 am

I agree with others this is a great post – and a growing problem. I trip over this sort of thing a lot – a book I sell being available for free download. Glad to see others equally outraged about it and I certainly hope it helps others realize how much damage they are doing to the publishing industry and authors by doing it.

Written By Chris Anderson
on June 20th, 2012 @ 7:22 am

This is a brilliant post – couldn’t be more correct in the way people think they can just rip off someone’s content that they may have worked on for years. Just because an author becomes a household name, or a book makes it to No1 in a chart, people presume (more often that not, wrongly) that they’re rich so they’re just “taking from ‘THE MAN'” It’s so infuriating.

Have a look at muso.com for assistance with publishing piracy – they search and remove files immediately at a really competitive price, and have years of experience in the music industry that they’re now using to combat piracy for publishers.

Written By Daniel
on June 21st, 2012 @ 8:34 am

Information is free.

I see many people here are interested in books selling,
working in book publishing/authors etc.
Problem is with this pay-for-all books for people
living in eastern Europe countries/poor world areas,
where u get paid less then 3 dollars an hour,while paying for
your rent/food/life expenses.Living costs are similar to American ones for example.
Now lets say I am interested in occult knowledge.
I cant always see from a review what a book/author is
like,what level is his knowledge and willingness to share,
or even better,level of his current clarity of mind/sanity.
Since this is a thread about pagan/spiritual books,I just cant
understand all this angry talk about harming Authors,since you said they get something about 10% of
books price if they are not self publishing.
A spiritually mature author wont ever write his books
for money solely; He HAS to pass on his knowldege.Its his karma.
I dont say we shouldnt support authors we like/respect
with what we can,but it is totally silly to me to expect
that EVERY single author be paid,from charlatans and
lunatics and ignorant to every possible kind of author out there.
Sorry but sea of occult/pagan literature/whatnot is too
big for my pockets.And quality fish are rare.And if u call my searching for knowledge stealing,reading 100 books to find one decent enough to be bought for my standards,then yes Im a thief
and thank you for admitting Hermes as a god of thieving.Even if majority of people here say information is
free but since “I wanna make money of information Im giving out”,it shouldnt be free.Too many contradictions.

Written By Christopher
on September 11th, 2012 @ 9:52 am

In the past wars, greed and of course economic crisis have in the past 2000 years have destroyed so many works of spiritual knowledge. I wonder what works of occult literature might have been saved for everyone after world war II if there had been thousands of electronic copies floating around. Beyond occult literature what works of art, scripture, manuscripts might now be being published and consequently making new authors money as all the old authors and owners are long dead. Sometimes the Gods think long term, if the world economy doesn’t improve we all may be lucky to eat, let alone buy books. Some already live in that situation. Yes there are free alternatives but like many free alternatives they are lacking compared to those who can afford better. Support in a community works both ways, how are people in countries with abysmal economies or social situations supposed to realistically buy one book, let alone a library of books? In some parts of the world like the middle east and Africa possession of such books is literally a torture or death sentence crime. Its a heck of alot stealthier to use an e-reader than a large shelf or bag of books with crescent moons on them.

As occult authors you should know the axiom as above so below. Support must happen both ways.

Magicians, pagans and witches support your authors by buying every book you can afford. If possible go to festivals and events or better yet volunteer. All of my disposable income goes to books or spiritual tools and I am active in my community. My book collection is worth about $9,000 and I support out of my own pocket in group gatherings. I do not make much, I am in academia and its not exactly a gold rush right now.

I also support download sites because I know not everyone is so fortunate. Some people live lives the authors here cannot even imagine. Lives of serious and dangerous intolerance in places like Northern India. Central America and Eastern Europe are not always pagan havens either. Worse still, some governments ban the sale of occult books. So I support download sites, not for the pirate but for those who really do have a need of support from someone. I personally would like to see them legitimized to become more like online libraries but authors seem to not want that and of course pirates don’t want that.

Authors you expect your community to step up? Ok I will step up, I bought a book by your publishing house last week and I will buy another one this month, new.

Now you guys step up, work with the new technology so our brothers and sisters in the community like Daniel in Eastern Europe don’t get left behind. Subscription online viewing library, donate older classic texts (that as pointed out are literally everywhere and will remain so) or sell e-books at a discount in regions where the local dollar is low. I mean really, are those markets lucrative anyways?

Like so many current social trends, the war on drugs, the war on prostitution and the war on terror it just causes loss on both sides and those impoverished often bear the brunt of it. The Pagan authors I have been learning from by reading their books usually shake their heads at these ill conceived conflicts. But it sounds to me like you are sounding your own battle cry now. I wonder what the pagan community will be like if these DCMA requests are enforced upon users, will we suffer similarly with a portion of our small community in jail? Will this improve us in anyway? I think there has to be a better way forward.

Written By Birgit
on December 18th, 2012 @ 9:02 pm

Thank you for the great posting on pirated books.

A friend of mine, who has crossed over to the summerlands (Ellen Cannon Reed), was an author with several books to her credit. Rich from the royalties? NO, far from it.

Downloading a pirated book from the internet is theft, pure and simple. True, the downloader may not be the original thief, but according to the copyright law, they are receiving stolen property. Theft is theft, whether you are doing it or you are just receiving it.

Do you really want the karma?

Written By Julix
on December 22nd, 2012 @ 8:47 pm

When someone steals a book from a store, then the store looses that book. – When someone steals a book online, that he wasn’t going to buy otherwise, then nobody looses anything – but he gains something without giving anything in return.

Of course if the pirate reader would have otherwise bought it (which is more likely if you’re writing for a very specific target audience), and now won’t, because he already got the info he was looking for, then that is a big problem.

I don’t think it’s the “unfair” part of taking without giving that is the problem, it’s more a question of who then shall give to the author?

I mean if you could cook a magical meal that won’t ever run out (so you can keep serving it over and over) and will stay fresh and hot, but only until midnight (or any limited time), surely you’d let the hungry and poor eat for free, right? But it is possible that rich people might take it for free as well, because they can. – But who then shall pay for the next meal?

Research in psychology and business has shown that creative cognitive productivity isn’t helped by big money as a potential reward – it causes stress that distracts from the task. But too little money is also bad, because then the worker has to worry about how he’ll get by. It seems the best reinforcement is one that takes your mind off the reward, as not to distract during the work.

If the minimums were covered (say you got basic, functional clothing, healthy food & clean water, internet, basic housing, for free), all (if any) profits would be bonuses towards luxurious items etc. — And there are enough of those, things we want. You’d still have incentive to work, and get money for it, but no terrible consequences if you fail to do so.

If you’d depend on the money only for buying fancy things you like, would you still object to being paid by donation? Open-source software developing works like that, and I hear some musicians are breaking loose from the old music industry, to this form.

One more thought: in Germany (where I grew up) we had a problem with public transportation (because it was private, thus profit based): too few people used it, driving the price up, so it was expensive, but it wasn’t used much, because it was expensive to start with, and now used even less…

So yes, some of your books might only sell a few thousand copies now, but that doesn’t have to mean they wouldn’t be hugely successful if you made them available by donation. – I’m not saying they would either, I haven’t read any of your books, nor have I studied this piracy situation enough yet.

If I were you I’d include a paypal email address in the front of the book so that people know how they can send money directly to you, if they feel like it.

I put more time into the rant than planned, but I hope you take it the right way and maybe get something out of it.

Greetings from a stranger,

Written By Eric
on April 17th, 2013 @ 1:51 am

I can’t defend pdf versions of books on the web.

I do have a theory why people are absconding with Llewellyn published books however.

Since so many of them are filled piss poor scholarship, fiction passed off as factual information and downright falsehoods, perhaps they feel they’re doing the Pagan community a service by removing this dreck from circulation before unsuspecting people read it and think it’s true.

Llewellwyn needs to do a better job vetting it’s authors and determine the veracity of the material they’re presenting in their books.

Written By Elysia
on April 17th, 2013 @ 9:36 am

Dear Eric – when is the last time you read a new Llewellyn book? I can assure you that in the past 8 years that I’ve been here, I have been vetting, fact checking, rejecting, asking authors to rewrite, and so on. I’m sure if you gave us another chance you’d find very finely crafted and well researched publications with the moon logo on the side. 🙂 Let me know what you’re interested in, and I’ll give you a few recommendations!

Written By Donald Michael Kraig
on April 18th, 2013 @ 2:10 pm

Eric, without anything specific it’s impossible to either agree with you or disagree. I do know that Elysia (and other editors and readers with specialized knowledge) fact check proposed books.

I have a question for you: How many emails have you sent to Llewellyn concerning any books that you believe to be factually false. Did you include any documentation with that?

Further, I’m sure you’ve noticed that different history books, for example, give different interpretations of events. It’s possible that your sources are different that those of someone else and that neither of you are “wrong.”

Be that as it may, it sounds to me as if you’re still trying to justify theft. If you don’t like a book, don’t buy it. If you don’t want others to buy it, start a blog and let them know. If you want to help, if you find something factually untrue, send an email with documentation.

Written By Lazar
on May 30th, 2013 @ 3:56 pm

Taking materials from Golden Dawn sources (which originated mostly in Europe) and materials from grimoire magic to be sold in America (and back to Europe…) with new copyright notices is worse than theft!

Many authors should be gratefull for free knowledge they get. They should remember that and just be quiet!

Dear D. M. Craig, have you ever pay for ideas, diagrams, rituals in your book Modern Magick, and all that is taken from Golden Dawn materials? No, you havent pay! Need to say more?

Written By Lazar
on June 3rd, 2013 @ 11:03 am

And I am for good legal books!

Written By Project_Winterisle
on June 6th, 2013 @ 10:46 am

What about the readers from the Arabic Countries where the sale of the most of the occult books, especially associated with Polyteism, is illegal itself due to the religious reasons, and those materials are absent in bookshops and libraries? Or some extremely poor backwater countryside of Christian countries where there ate also no such libraries and bookshops and the youth is not given enough money by parents to buy such ebooks? Internet piracy is the only available access to those materials in those countries and regions. I think some social engineering project is needed to do some political provocation and ideological subversion in those societies and piracy should not be excluded to create tensions and demand for such materials. If they think that we “spread mischief on earth” let we give them full ocean of this “mischief”.

Written By Lazar
on June 9th, 2013 @ 2:32 am

Very interesting opinion from “Project_Winterisle” just above!

Great irony is that some of the most famous systems of magic originated in some Arabic or Middle Eastern Countries.

Written By Brad
on October 28th, 2013 @ 11:46 pm

What about books that have already been purchased? There are books that I’ve bought multiple hard copies of over the years, is it still an act of piracy for me to download that specific book in PDF format? This is something I’ve been wondering about for a while.

Written By kim thorne
on December 12th, 2013 @ 9:00 am

hi what sites are the pirate sites the reason why i ask is that i want to avoid them i dont want to accidentally end up on those sites.

i have respect for authors they work hard to put the books we love to read. and its not fair that their books are being pirated.

Written By Lynda
on December 13th, 2013 @ 12:22 pm

I had no idea writers profited so little, nor that the cost to publishers and others was so small. I know ebooks have cost many people their jobs and I resent them myself. While I personally prefer hardcover, actual books to touch and hold, well made and well written, the idea of downloading or theft upset me for the authors loss and the many involved in it’s making it to the shelves of book stores. Mostly this stems from my refusal to enroll in the latest “gadget”on the market only to find a few years later it is impossible to use because “the machine broke” and is no longer sold.
I found the article both informative and fair. After reading the many justifications of some, for their theft of the work of others, I find it really hard to buy their excuses. In just the research for something I’m doing, I have paid for trips to interviews with people around the country, searched old public town halls, dug through the dust of old records stored in library store rooms, paid for copies of hospital records and on it went and it’s 10 years later. I’m still researching. While I’m not discouraged in my own quest for the truth, I’m appalled at the reasons given that I’ve read here for what can only be named a theft. Too many people have given excuses for their common theft without guilt. They have attempt to try and justify their own stealing with weak excuses. I wonder if they buy into these lame excuses myself. How can taking something that isn’t yours, regardless of what it is, anything but stealing? How are they not common thieves to themselves? Stealing defies everything decent regardless of beliefs or culture or circumstances. If someone lives in a place where this material is banned, or they are so poor, or have no Library, then how did they come to even know of the existence of this material, and why choose this material to steal? Does “Harm none” mean so little to them? They may justify their stealing, their theft in these responses, but if it is a book or a body organ, I have a feeling they know inside exactly what they’re doing and perhaps need the authors forgiveness, which rightfully should not be given. Something important is missing in humanity today. That something is common decency.
I own rooms of books I have purchased over my lifetime, but I would never presume to feel it was anything but theft to feel, “That if I bought the hard copy I should be able to steal another method of reading someones hard work”.( seriously??) Each of those who have stolen something and not paid it’s creator, have lost something inside themselves that these books will never give them. Perhaps they should do themselves a favor and seek help from a professional, and if not, then they should look within alone deeply. If what you seek isn’t in there to harvest, no book stolen or purchased will help them anyway.
The article was a valuable source of information. I thank the author for sharing this and her time, and I thank your company for the site. I enjoy the shared articles so much. I’m sorry you are out of the book I came in to look for today, but I hope this means you will restock it soon. As for the thieves, seriously, get help.

Written By Janice
on January 8th, 2014 @ 9:23 am

I disagree. Most Pagan writers are just taking things they’ve learned from other books and putting it into their own books to make money. There is almost nothing original being written. Everybody wants to make money off witchcraft. Money is now what makes the Wiccan world go around. I hope that more and more people put “pirated” PDF books online for those of us who can’t afford to buy the books and feed the writers’ egos.

Written By mist42nz
on June 9th, 2014 @ 2:57 am

information is free…. delivery and organisation (which is hard friggin work and financially risky) is not free.

and disagree with janice 121… yes there are authors who assemble and repeat. so don’t buy their stuff, preview it, then walk away. don’t buy it, don’t copy it, don’t distribute it. Instad promote the people and books they are copying from, buy them, give away copies you’ve bought, spread their names around so people can know the good from the less good.

Written By anonymous
on September 21st, 2015 @ 6:33 pm

Someone I know sometimes reads pirated books when she can’t afford it… but, she keeps a list and goes back and pays when she has the cash. I’ve seen her do it.
Not all “pirates” are bad.

Written By Jordan
on January 9th, 2017 @ 11:37 am

I know I’m going to get flamed for this, but I don’t care…

I’ve had people attack me for reading pirated books…and then when I suggest they buy the books that I’ve written so I can have money to buy books the books of others instead of pirating them, they shut right up! Amazing how that works!


  1. Happy Monday! | Katy Upperman  on August 13th, 2012 @ 4:52 am
  2. Thank You, Pomona!  on August 27th, 2012 @ 11:37 am

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