I remember a forum post I read about a year ago. A guy had spent months writing this ebook that was his pride and joy but didn’t want to release it to the big, bad world because …shock, horror…people might rip it off.
My feeling was, get over it.
I’ve had my stuff ripped off, stolen, “repackaged”, you name it – it used to bother me … a lot. Now, not so much 🙂
If you’ve been putting off releasing your ebook to the big, bad world now’s the time to think again.
Ebooks are hot right now. I know they may sound old hat for some internet marketers but right now ebooks are hot because they are becoming acceptable mainstream. The average user is now used to downloading an ebook and they’ve been educated in paperless knowledge by the big players and technology. The big players like Amazon are selling more ebooks than physical books. Ereaders like kindle are making it possible for everyone to read a book on the bus in the morning. Innovations like the kindle library (borrow an ebook anybody?) are making it possible to be educated, paperless and mobile.
If you have never thought about releasing an ebook why not?
I don’t propose to cover creating an ebook in this post. I’m assuming you’ve got one in your head, PLR on your hard drive or a pride and joy waiting to be unleashed. If you want some tips in a later post about creating an ebook fast then let me know in the comments below.
The big, bad world
Once you have created your ebook you can protect yourself a little bit from the thiefs of the world. There are a number of ways that you can do this:
1) by using download software that allows you to track ip addresses, ban people, blacklist ip addresses and the like
2) protecting your pdf by encryption, password, preventing copying
3) using pdf stamping
I want guarantees
None of these things are 100% effective. It’s just like your house, if people really want to get in – they will, you can just make it harder for them. The only things that are guaranteed in this life are death and taxes. There’s not a lot of point in putting off releasing a product because you’re frightened of what will happen to it. Remember, there’s more honest people in the world than dishonest.
PDF Stamping is something that some digital sites have been using for a while – Ejunkie to name one. Basically what happens is you upload your pdf and when it is downloaded by the buyer the pdf is stamped with their name, address and email address on the downloaded copy. This means that if the product creator locates a copy of that pdf in the big, bad world they know which customer to blacklist, ban or banish to the end of the world with no chocolate!
There is also a WordPress plugin that does the same thing called PDF Stamper for people that do not use Ejunkie.
The PDF stamper plugin is pretty nifty.
How it works
First of all you need to upload your pdf to its download destination.
Then go to Settings and choose what information you want to be stamped on the pdf once purchased. You might want to include, name, email address, address, date of purchase. You can customize this section with what information you fancy (as allowed by the plugin).
You can also configure the pdf stamper at this stage for:
- No Printing
- Password protection
- No Copying
- No Modification
You can also pretty up the stamp by changing the colors and fonts.
When someone purchases your ebook the plugin nips out and stamps the information on the pdf download that you configured earlier.
An easy way to make your mark on documents for a low one off cost.
The plugin is said to work with third party ecommerce solutions provided you can integrate it in accordance with the PDF Stamper guidelines. (I haven’t tried it myself) .
Each time a purchase is made the stamped pdf remains on your server. You can go in to the Plugin Settings and manually delete these files. A scheduled automatic deletion feature has been considered by the developer in future releases. This could cause a lot of excess space to be used. If a customer loses their download link etc a new copy has to be stamped.
If someone is keen to mis-use your product this will not stop them.
Check out the PDF Stamper WordPress plugin here.