Monday, 30 June 2014

How to Send a Short Fiction DMCA Takedown Notice

Over my last couple of posts I've being discussing my own experience of trying to get my copyrighted work, in this case a short story, removed from an infringing site ...which were a whole lot of time-consuming and messy to say the least.  It would be remiss, though, not to share how I actually went about sending a DMCA Takedown Notice, because I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one in this industry who could do with that knowledge.

Lest I do something awfully similar to what I've just spent two posts grumbling about, I should state clearly that I got all of this information from attorney Carolyn E. Wright's excellent and thorough post on the topic here.  But Carolyn talks specifically about photography, and I figure the following will save fellow writers the slight effort of adapting her form letter to cover written fiction.

First up, then, you should work out who hosts the website in question; you can find this through a service such as Domain Tools or  Once you know who to contact you then need to send them some legalese letting them know that copyright law is being broken on their watch and that you expect them to do something about it.  Below is the e-mail I sent; just change the parts in bold and you're away.  This assumes you've already contacted the website's owner and gone through the process of asking them to remove your work ... for why this absolutely the right thing to do go read the two posts I linked to at the top there.

Good luck!

To: [E-mail Address of ISP Host]

Re: Copyright Claim

To the ISP Hosting Company: 

I am the copyright owner of the work of short fiction being infringed at: [].
This work is being used without my permission and in breach of copyright.  I have asked
the website's owner to remove my work from their website and they have failed to do so.  

This letter is official notification under the provisions of Section 512(c) of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (“DMCA”) to effect removal of the above-reported infringements. I request that you immediately issue a cancellation message as specified in RFC 1036 for the specified postings and prevent the infringer, who is identified by its Web address, from posting the infringing work to your servers in the future. Please be advised that law requires you, as a service provider, to “expeditiously remove or disable access to” the infringing work upon receiving this notice. Noncompliance may result in a loss of immunity for liability under the DMCA.

I have a good faith belief that use of the material in the manner complained of here is not authorized by myself as the copyright holder, or the law. The information provided here is accurate to the best of my knowledge. I swear under penalty of perjury that I am the copyright holder.

Please can you contact me at [] with a prompt response indicating the actions you have taken to resolve this matter.



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