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India’s top publishing house urges readers to stand up to book piracy

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Kolkata: Leading publishing company Penguin Random House India has launched a campaign aimed at raising awareness of the harmful impact of book piracy and empowering people to take action against it.

This practice has resulted in significant losses of time, money, and effort for all stakeholders in the publishing industry, including authors, printers, distributors, retailers, readers, and publishers.

The initiative coincided with UNESCO’s World Book and Copyright Day, celebrated every year on April 23 to emphasise the significance of reading, publishing, and copyrights.

By encouraging people to understand the gravity of book piracy and its repercussions, the campaign hopes to create a culture of respect for intellectual property and support for the creative work of authors and publishers.

Led by the hashtag #SayNoToBookPiracy, the campaign will be driven on social media with the support of many of our authors, who have joined hands to take the message to readers everywhere.

The publishing house’s social media pages feature a video where some of the leading voices from the Indian literary space, such as Lt Gen KJS Dhillon, Anand Neelakantan, Meghna Pant and Novoneel Chakraborty, along with well-known professionals- turned-authors like Saurabh Mukherjea, Anand Ranganathan and Vasudha Rai, to name a few, have come together to highlight the time and effort that goes into the publication of a book and the harmful effect of piracy that not only leads to a violation of copyright but also causes financial losses for the author and other stakeholders in the value chain, thereby lowering the standards of publishing for the whole country.

The publishing house has introduced a new tool, developed in collaboration with the anti-piracy service provider Link-Busters, to report instances of digital book piracy.

The tool enables individuals to report suspicious links to the publisher’s website, which will be verified and acted upon where necessary. Users will receive a confirmation email from Link-Busters, which will be followed up with confirmation of the action taken, where appropriate.

The initiative is a part of the company’s ongoing efforts to fight book piracy and promote respect for intellectual property rights. By leveraging the power of social media and technology, the campaign hopes to raise awareness about the issue and encourage readers to support authors and publishers by purchasing books legally.

Commenting on the launch of the campaign, Gaurav Shrinagesh, CEO, Penguin Random House India & SEA, said the campaign will encourage readers to take a stand to preserve the sanctity of the effort that goes into the publishing of a written work.

“Pirated copies may be cheaper and perhaps even easier to obtain, but it is important to acknowledge that their overall impact on the industry will ultimately devalue a publisher’s ability to invest in authors and new books, the author’s rights to protect their intellectual property, and all other stakeholders who invest heavily in ensuring the discoverability and reach of the books,” Shrinagesh said.

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