Bookinistika: eBook Piracy Website With An Attitude

This morning I was alerted by a post in one of the writers groups I belong to on Facebook – about a website that’s been ripping off dozens of authors by selling their books from their website without due process or authorization, and keeping the profits for themselves. The name of the website – Bookinistika.

I decided to hop along and check their website out, and to see if there were any of mine up there. I wasn’t to be disappointed.

Piracy is also hateful towards writers, isn’t it? I mean, aside from being outright theft, it’s taking food out of the mouths of struggling authors.

Most of us I’d say, are regular folk who hold down jobs, have families to take care of and provide for – and we write on the side in the hope of making something of a lifelong passion, perhaps even to make a little money out of it. Then along come lying, thieving scumbags who take your work and sell copies of it for their own gain while you receive nothing for it!

The same is true for small presses as well. They have massive competition to handle as it is – and writers to pay out for each legitimate sale, without some fraudster muscling in on the action, selling the same items illegally for their own profit!

That’s not fair, is it?

So what is “Bookinistika”? From my own investigation, I conclude that it’s a Russian website which masquerades as a “cheap” eBook store online. 

Over all, prices appear somewhat higher than where the books they list have been sourced from – typically from Amazon as far as I can tell.

When I searched for gen on the business name, the search results I found indicated that the site is barely a few months old – and already has rather a piss-poor reputation all over the internet for eBook piracy!

Just off the top of the list, Reddit has this article “new pirate site, Bookinistika, has at least some of your works up, you may want to check.” and “Pirating site heads-up!” from the SFF Chronicles.

Judging that these reports are all from a day ago, Bookinistika appears to be a new site – or has only just started operating.

Whoever they are though, they are stealing from me and from every other author whose titles are listed on their website! “Affordable books” the site claims – which is ironic considering they didn’t pay a cent for mine, and then expect to sell it for nearly $5!

Fortunately – while I found about five or six books listed there to which I contributed, these are owned by other publishers and do not directly affect me. 

Only one of my own titles was listed there: “The Quantum Guide To Deanna”. This item is available from my website AND Amazon and everywhere else that is legitimate and above-board as a FREE download.

But not on Bookinistika – oh no, they are SELLING my FREE eBook (normally available for $0.00) for $4.89 without any by-your-leave, permission or negotiation with me as the author and publisher! Since this book is free through all legitimate channels, they are obviously keeping the proceeds for themselves! They never even bothered to change the description “…a nice free guide…” – so they’re not very bright!

To make it even harder for the author, these sly fuckers provide a ‘complaints’ page which features a bullshit statement about complying with some or other anti-piracy law, and where you can supposedly report piracy and list the items pirated etc – and as soon as you click ‘send‘, their system automatically blocks your IP address so you can’t view their website anymore – or ostensibly, to check if they’ve complied or been taken down!

That is, without the aid of proxy apps and other devices!

Q: If they’re a legit site, why would they do this?

Answer: They wouldn’t!

I took the time to report their salty arses to their hosting company AND the FBI – along with the enclosed screenshots.

If you’re a writer and you find your books on their website, I strongly suggest you do the same!

See to it that these fuckers get keelhauled! Arr!

UPDATE:

As of midday February 18, 2020 Bookinistika’s website became unavailable. I’d consider this a win for authors – although only time will tell if they stay offline, or if they move to different service providers, hosts, change urls etc.

On the morning of February 19, 2020, Bookinistika is back online again on it’s original url – but my book listings appear to have been removed. Please continue to check for your own book listings and report as necessary.

Update, February 20, 2020:


If you would like to know more about Christina Engela and her writing, please feel free to browse her website.

If you’d like to send Christina Engela a question about her life as a writer or transactivist, please send an email to christinaengela@gmail.com or use the Contact form.

Show your appreciation for Christina’s work!

All material copyright © Christina Engela, 2020.

Spread the love