According to New York Times Writer David Pogue, after making his printed books available electronically to individuals who were blind, the books were pirated. He says:
Unfortunately, I’ve had terrible experiences releasing my books in electronic form. Twice in my career, ‘blind’ people e-mailed me, requesting a PDF of one of my books. Both times, I sent one over–and both times, it was all over the piracy sites within 48 hours, free for anyone to download.
…Unfortunately, the bad apples have once again spoiled it for everyone
I can totally understand a writer’s desire to protect their intellectual property, but to indirectly blame blind people for piracy, now that seems a little too far fetched for me. I am not doubting what the writer is saying, I am sure his work did end up being available illegally. However, I am doubting that the only possible way this could have occurred is from the request of two individuals who wanted to read his work, but the publisher did not make any alternative accessible formats available.
I hope it’s not just me who finds his words offensive, especially during this time when the blind community is fighting for access to information on so many fronts. I would hate to see arguments like the one posed by Pogue used to restrict our access further.
Mr. Pogue should be aware that his latest book, “Switching to the Mac: The Missing Manual, Leopard Edition ” is available via BitTorrent, a peer to peer sharing program. Wow, and according to him, it wasn’t even distributed to those pirating blind people! Ahrrrrrrrrrrrr!