- Title: Irish-run website investigated over ebook piracy operation
- Source: Sunday Times (London, England). (Dec. 18, 2011): News: p6.
- Document Type: Brief article
- Full Text: Sunday Times
- Byline: John Mooney
- An investigation by European copyright agencies is under way into an Irish-run website which sells counterfeit ebooks.
- Investigators believe library.nu is operated by Irish nationals, possibly from Galway, through a server in Kiev, the Ukrainian capital. The website gives the former headquarters of Anglo Irish Bank on St Stephen's Green in Dublin as its registered office.
- The illegal trade in downloads is depriving publishers of millions of euros. They are facing a crisis similar to the one that hit the music industry when websites such as Napster and Kazaa gave users free access to copyrighted material.
- Library.nu specialises in offering expensive academic and educational titles to users to download illegally.
- The website's operators appear to know they are the focus of an inquiry. Last week, library.nu changed its front page, and is now permitting only existing users to log in and download counterfeit books.
- Analysis of traffic to the site shows about 30,000 people are using it each month. The majority of users come from America and India.
- Samantha Holman, the chief executive of the Irish Copyright Licencing Agency, said she was aware of the site.
- "This website specialises in offering counterfeit academic books. It isn't offering Irish published books but is certainly stealing academic works by Irish authors including Conor Kostick," she said. Holman called on the government to introduce measures to disconnect internet users who illegally download copyrighted material.
- Ebook piracy is a growing problem with many Irish authors and publishers discovering that counterfeit editions of their books are available to download on websites including The Pirate Bay, based in Sweden, which has an estimated 22m users worldwide. Fergal Tobin, the president of the Federation of European Publishers, said the government needed to introduce legislation which would force internet service providers to prevent the download of illegal material.
- Many publishers in Europe have hired copyright detectives to scour the internet for pirated manuscripts. Many of these are stolen by staff as they are being converted into ebook formats by specialist companies in India and China. Review copies of books sent out before publication are also intercepted.
- John Mooney
- Source Citation
- "Irish-run website investigated over ebook piracy operation." Sunday Times [London, England] 18 Dec. 2011: 6. Academic OneFile. Web. 20 Dec. 2011.
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