Before I start: One reason I haven’t posted for a while is that I’ve actually been focusing on working out some things about the storyline of the new book—not Sunborn, but the following book, The Reefs of Time (working title). It’s been sending out shoots in some unexpected directions, which I guess is consistent with the theme of The Chaos Chronicles—but disconcerting.
There are a number of things I’ve been meaning to write about here, but what actually kicked me into gear is a just-discovered case of copyright infringement involving one of my short stories. I have several stories up for free on my web site, and each of them has at the top a copyright notice, along with a plain language statement that it is not permissible to reproduce them elsewhere on the web. Nevertheless, someone named “Jim” has chosen to do just that.
The story in question, “Shapeshifter Finals,” was published in 1995 in the anthology, Warriors of Blood and Dream, edited by Roger Zelazny. I’ve had it up for readers to enjoy for quite a few years. Earlier today, I did something I’ve done from time to time but not lately, which is to take a line at random from my online works and run a search to see if anyone has stolen the source. To my astonishment, I came up positive with this story. It’s been posted online, in its entirety, on a blog called Tales and Tributes. The blog owner apparently lifted it directly from my website, and gave me credit as the author but neglected to ask for permission, or to reproduce the copyright notice—thus giving the false impression that the work is in the public domain. The work is not in the public domain; it is copyright © 1995 by Jeffrey A. Carver.
I would contact the blog owner, but the thing is, “Jim” has no contact information on his blog. Apparently he doesn’t want to be contacted. Another thing is, according to a Whois.com lookup, the domain name, jimblogs.net, was created on the very same day my story was posted. How odd is that?
I have contacted the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA) to see if they can assist me in dealing with this, and I’m sure we’ll get to the bottom of it eventually. But in the meantime, if any of you out there in blogland know anything about jimblogs.net or “Jim,” I would appreciate hearing from you.
“The problem is when you’re not writing you don’t know if you’re lying fallow or if you’ll never write again.” —Norman Mailer