“It only takes one click to copy and republish a creator’s original content without his permission.” – Blasty
Back in July, Debby of dgkayewriter and Damyanti of Damyanti-writes both mentioned a new online service called Blasty.
Blasty allows writers to sign up their books, and then continually monitors Google for infringing copies of content. Each suspect link is flagged to the writer’s dashboard, and the writer is given the opportunity to “blast” (eradicate) the link from Google with a simple click! No paperwork, no cease and desist notifications, no time-consuming and frustrating dealings with pirates.
Intrigued, I signed up. In four months, I’ve blasted 403 copyright infringements on 8 books.
Per Blasty: “Each time you click on “Blast,” a copyright removal procedure under the DMCA (Digital Millenium Copyright Act) is automatically initiated, resulting in the complete elimination of the infringing webpage from Google on a worldwide basis. Since Blasty has been approved by Google’s Legal Department as a trusted removal partner, your “Blasts” will be approved much faster than regular removal requests submitted through Google’s dedicated webform.”
The site is still in beta-testing and the developers continue to look for new authors. If you join now, there is no fee! Here is an invitation if you’re interested: https://www.blasty.co/invitation/gh5WX8i4. You can also use the link above.
I don’t open most of the links as it’s obvious that the site is pirating my work (offering a “free pdf” or “read online” or “free epub” – none of which I offer). Some of these may be phishing sites, yet I’ve opened a few links and seen lovely comments from readers stating that the free read of my book was great. This is the real thing.
Sadly, I have seen other bloggers’ books show up next to mine. Yes, your books.
A Few Notes
1) Blasty has a FAQ section and short video demonstrating how to use the site correctly and efficiently.
2) You will only be able to load one book at sign up, which Blasty will use to verify that you are the copyright holder. This can take 12 days, though that can be reduced if you share an “invitation” like the one above with 3 other authors. I waited the 12 days as I wanted to try the site before recommending. Once verified, you can add the rest of your books at one sitting.
(Update – please note that one commenter below noted that the wait is now quite a bit longer – about 6 weeks. Still worth it in my opinion).
3) The Blasty Dashboard is easy to navigate. When you sign in, it will show you a list of suspicious Google links, and you will then have the choice to ‘Blast’ them away or ignore them.
4) Be careful not to blast legit blogger sites where your books have been featured or reviewed. Ignore them or add approved sites to a “white list” so they won’t be flagged at all.
5) You can ‘unblast’ if you’ve blasted something in error.
6) Occasionally you will be asked to review a blast as Google suspects it might be a legit site. This has happened about 6 times to me. I’ve reviewed and given a small explanation as to why the site is infringing on my content. For example, “This site is offering my book as a pdf. I do not offer pdf versions of my book.” Easy.
7) Rejected blasts. A rejected blast is where Google determines that there was no copyright infringement, and therefore, they reject your blast. They don’t like this as you are telling them to blast a legitimate site into orbit. I’ve had 1 reject out of 403 blasts, a medical site that mentioned “The Bone Wall.” Oops. That occurred early in my use of the site and hasn’t happened since. Too many of these will impact your account.
8) I check my dashboard every two weeks or so. It takes about 5 minutes at most. This is fast, easy, and painless.
I strongly recommend signing up for this service.