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Oceanofpdf piracy website taken down

US-hosted ebook piracy website Oceanofpdf, which was giving away ebooks for free, has been shut down, reports the Bookseller.

The site, which was active for seven months, had offered thousands of PDF and EPUB files of ebooks that could be downloaded for free, without any contracts with publishers or authors.

The site had angered UK-based authors Philip Pullman, Robin Stevens and Michelle Harrison. Pullman had sent a tweet to OceanofPDF, which said, ‘Please show me the agreement you have with my publishers, or my agent, or me, which allows you to give my books away free.’

One of the website’s founders, calling himself Nicholas Liam, had told the Bookseller that he ran the site to help readers access books. ‘We only process users requests. Once we get an email from a user requesting a book that he/she cannot afford/find in the library or if he has lost it, we try to find it on their behalf and upload on our site so that someone in future might also get it,’ he said.

The Australian Society of Authors (ASA) made a statement instructing members to issue takedown notices ‘to stop [an] unlawful supply of books’. ‘Contact your publisher to see if it has already issued a takedown notice on your behalf or intends to do so,’ said the ASA.

Society of Authors UK head of communications Martin Reed said, ‘We’re pleased to see that the Oceanofpdf website isn’t currently online, but we’ll keep the champagne on ice for now. The site was enabled by many organisations in the supply chain—website hosts, DNS management services, website registrars—and in spite of many complaints from authors and trade those suppliers were universally reluctant to accept any responsibility. It’s difficult to tell which bit of the chain has been switched off, and … there’s still a chance it could be switched back on.’



Category: International news