Illegal downloading, which has sent the music industry into a tailspin, is also now apparently causing havoc in the book industry :
Tracy Chevalier, author of Girl with a Pearl Earring, who also chairs the London-based organisation, said her members were deeply concerned that the publishing industry was failing to adapt to the digital agewrites Ben Hoyle in the Times :
The internet is awash with unlicensed free digital copies of individual chapters, or in some cases, entire books.Although some of the victims are prominent authors such as Jamie Oliver and J.K. Rowling, the authors of the kinds of books you tend to dip into are the most vulnerable, including authors of short stories, writers of cookbooks, and lesser-known poets.
Chevalier says that a new model of payment for authors needs to be found :
... possibly by making the content available free to all and finding a way to get paid separately.But it is of course anyone guess how this might work in practice.
Meanwhile, Scott Esposito of Conversational Reading isn't so sure that Chevalier et al have it right.
This is how easy it is to get hold of a pirated e-book.