How to Fight Plagiarism and Claim Back Your Book

The rise of eBooks and digital sales has spurred a rise in IP fraud. Fortunately, there are ways for authors and publishers to fight back.

People say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. This might ring true in some aspects of your life, but not when it comes to any original works you’ve poured time and money into. The last thing you want is for someone else to claim ownership of a book or document that belongs to you. As daunting as the prospect might be for having to fight plagiarism and claim the rights to your book, it’s a battle worth fighting. Keep reading to find out what’s involved.

Copyright Your Work

Even if you never dreamed that anyone could try and steal the ownership rights to your book, it can happen. That’s why it can be so crucial to include a copyright page in anything you write. Start by registering your work with the US Copyright Office, then include your copyright information on a page in the book you will be publishing.

This information can include:

  • A publisher name and address
  • Order information
  • Trademarks and printing details
  • Your website
  • A CIP data block
  • The book edition
  • Disclaimers
  • Printing numbers
  • Credit

Start by registering your work with the US Copyright Office.

Approach Amazon

Amazon is considered the world’s largest book store, and is now the largest online retailer of consumer goods. If you’re going to fight plagiarism and claim back your book, start by approaching them. Several authors who have had their work stolen before have contacted Amazon to claim ownership. By having the plagiarised book removed from Amazon, they were able to see it disappear from the catalogues of many smaller booksellers as well.

Don’t Offer a Download Option

You may never be able to stop every case of plagiarism from occurring, since it happens across many industries. However, there are small actions you can take to reduce the likelihood. For example, if you sell your book online as an eBook, don’t offer a download option. If someone purchases your book, email the book through a secure provider to the customer. This adds an extra layer of security against someone trying to download eBooks from the internet to copy and profit from.

Change Your Download Link Often

If you prefer to include a download link for your book, change it often. It doesn’t stop plagiarism from being a problem, but it can certainly decrease the number of would-be plagiarists thinking you are an easy victim. Most plagiarists are after quick, easy money-making methods. Small measures like an ever-changing download link can put your book into the too-hard basket.

Get Lawyers Involved

If you’re struggling to claim ownership of a book that’s rightfully and legally yours, consider making contact with an intellectual property lawyer. Sometimes, all it takes to make someone stop stealing your work is a strongly-worded letter on legal letterhead. However, a lawyer may also have ideas about how to protect your work in the future, and they may even be able to help you strengthen the copyright protection you currently have in place.

Plagiarism has been occurring for a long time, and there’s no way to prevent every case of it from happening. However, there are plenty of ways you can reduce the risk and fight to claim full ownership of your book once more.

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