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Warning: Beware of this eBook Scam

By December 26, 2013Internet Lawyer

abridged edition ebooksThere are some authors who have decided to squeeze an extra dollar or two out of their readers by engaging in deceptive trade practices when it comes to publishing Amazon Kindle and other eBook versions of their hardback and paperback books.

It goes beyond clever marketing into outright fraud.

How the eBook Scam Works

Ima Guru writes a book titled “7 Daily Habits of Lean Unicorns: How to Get Things Done While Eating Skittles.”* The book is published in paperback and occasionally in hardback.

Although Guru wants an eBook edition of his unicorn productivity book, he just can’t stand the thought of pricing it less than a print version of the same book.

The scammy solution? Guru releases an eBook with the exact same title but missing chunks of productivity content that are in the print edition.

This is more than simply an eBook formatting issue to make it easier to read on tablets and smartphones. Guru’s eBook has the exact same title but only describes 3 daily unicorn habits and omits the powerful lean secrets of eating blue skittles that are contained in the print books. If you want to learn all of the unicorn productivity secrets, you’ll have to buy the print version too.

Publishing an Abridged eBook the Right Way

There’s nothing wrong with releasing a streamlined version of a print book as an eBook if it is described as such. Using the term “Abridged Edition” and making it clear in the eBook’s description on sales pages would make the process transparent because the prospective reader would know what was being purchased.

Are you the victim of an eBook scam?

If you’ve been cheated by an eBook author, demand a refund and boycott future books by the same author until the deceptive practices stop.

Let’s face it. If Ima Guru can’t afford to charge less for an eBook copy of a print book, there’s something seriously wrong with Guru’s business model. In fact, smarter authors and publishers include extras (e.g. samples from other books) in their eBooks rather than cheating the reader out of content.

* The title for this book is made up purely as an example and is not intended to refer to any actual book in print or electronic form. The authors engaging in the eBook scam described here know who they are. There’s no need to identify the actual titles.

Mike Young, Esq.

Author Mike Young, Esq.

Mike Young has been practicing business and technology law since 1994 and is an angel investor in startups. He's been an entrepreneur since 1988. To get legal help from Attorney Young, click here now or call 214-546-4247 to schedule a phone consultation.

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