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article imageJ.K. Rowling leads fight against free book site Scribd

By Kesavan Unnikrishnan     Apr 1, 2009 in Internet
Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling and other prominent authors have launched legal action against free book sharing site Scribd for alleged piracy.
Scribd, popularly known as the " YouTube for documents" is the world's most popular free website for reading books on the Internet. The site receives more than 50 million visitors a month, with more than 50,000 new documents uploaded by users every day. The site based in California allows users to download the text onto their computers to edit as they see fit.
Rowling's lawyers said that most of the books in Harry Potter series were uploaded in the site and Scribd did not have permission to use her works.Most of the best selling authors titles are uploaded in scribd within days of its publishing. Scribd doesn't pay any royalty to the authors although it runs ads on its site.
Peter Cox, a literary agent and editor of the Litopia blog, said:
These people are pirates. We don’t have to give in to this. We can’t afford to make the same mistakes the music industry did.
Meanwhile, Scribd denied the allegations and said that it immediately removed copyrighted material when they receive notices from copyright holders. It said in a statement.
Our system compares every work uploaded to Scribd against the tens of thousands of documents in our copyright reference database, and if someone tries to upload one of those copyrighted works, our technology prevents them from doing so. Every time a document is removed for copyright violation, the file is entered into our system, and that work cannot be re-uploaded. As our reference database grows over time, our technology will become even smarter and faster.
Scribd, which was launched in March 2007 by two Harvard students in their early twenties was used by the Obama campaign to publish public policy documents.
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