The previous article had a ton of great comments… I felt the need to have a “part 2″ article.
Reminder – this is a portion of the email Amazon will send you if you publish public domain content that is already freely available elsewhere:
During a review of your catalog, we found that one or more of your titles contain content that is freely available on the web.
Copyright is important to us – we want to make sure that no author or other copyright holder has their work claimed and sold by anyone else.
George left this great comment:
Hi Deb, the headline of your post is not quite true. You are still allowed to publish public domain books on Amazon, they even encourage you to do so if you play by the rules. Since I represent a big PD publisher on this site with a few thousand titles I can give you some tips:
1. Never try to publish a title that is freely available (this is in 99% of all cases PG stuff). The only safe way to play this is to invest money in a very professional annotation. I tried some Lewis Carroll books and did not even get through with hand-written biographies just because – as a matter of fact – the data itself is freely available on the web.
A professional essay writer would do for sure, so if you want to invest a few bucks for the umpteenth version of Alice in Wonderland, go ahead. The bad news is that there are still MANY versions of books online that were published before that enforcement. I even found versions of Alice that use the Wikipedia article as an annotation – with all the original links uncloaked! I hope these will be unpublished soon.
2. If you publish a PD title that is not already available on KDP (and boy there are many, even from the most renown authors), go ahead without annotation. Amazon will wave i through. But: once in a while this title could pop up in PG and Amazon would scrape it from there. To avoid questionable questions in months to come try to enrich this title with an annotation. This can even be a PD annotation and does not need to be hand-crafted.
3. If you publish a PD title that is already available on KDP but which has to be paid for, there are two options. #1: Publish it as is. Most possibly Amazon will wave it through but in some cases (I assume the bigger the publisher of the existing title the more likely this is) Amazon will stop the publishing process. #2: same as above, to make your title stand out and avoid trouble, give it an annotation.
4. If you try to publish a PLR title you are busted for sure. The plagiarism bot is not very good in deciding the next steps (well, this should be human decision anyway) but in finding duplicates on the web. Don’t even bother rewriting it, there’s no sense in it. The same applies obviously to Wikipedia stuff
This guideline should do it pretty much. There are hundreds of thousands of PD books out there waiting to be published. Be clever and inventive and careful, very careful – you can still make money out of it!
I want to give George a huge big HUG for sharing this valuable little guide.
One question that comes up regarding number 2 from the above “guide”…… say I add a section (annotation) to all my books that is the same in all books…I created this from combining Public Domain content that IS NOT freely available on the internet…will I still get flagged by Amazon because all of my books have that same portion added to each book?
I’m hoping George will stop by and give a few words of wisdom.
The PLR Guru’s That Are Scummy Charlatans
Via Wikipedia: A charlatan (also called swindler or mountebank) is a person practicing quackery or some similar confidence trick in order to obtain money, fame or other advantages via some form of pretense or deception.
You won’t find one affiliate link on this page – because I don’t believe any of these products are anything you should purchase. If you decide to buy… I don’t want to make any profits from those that I don’t feel serve you best.
This is one of the first Offending “Guru’s”:
And another Guru selling his junk on the Warrior Forum:
Just over the past month I watched yet another webinar about publishing Government Public Domain content on Kindle. I believe this product has a few nuggets of “goodness” crafted into a high priced “get rich quick” scheme – Real Fast Public Domain. (I am actually really ticked off about this latest Daniel Hall product.)
You should take a few moments to read this article: The Kindle Swindle
Jim Edwards published a free short report regarding “The Amazon Kindle “Riches” Lie“. I believe he hit some of the problems right on target… and yet I think he doesn’t know enough about publishing public domain content to have this entire report ring true. I am a bit disappointed to say the least.. but still it’s a good read.
Here is another “guru” product that I think is Offensive and I was embarrassed for some of the contributors to this product:
A 2 hour webinar replay for this product can be viewed here: Amazon Cash Machine
These “Guru” types are why Amazon has had to clamp down on those that publish JUNK and it has hit some of us that are legitimate in the process. Shame on the “Guru Types” that are the charlatans.
Remember eBay IS Different Than Amazon
My prediction is that eBay will never have the same restrictions for publishing public domain content that Amazon has. On eBay we are publishing and selling “as is” public domain content and the buyer knows it. Having lot’s of choices for buying is what eBay is about… Amazon want’s the customer to have a different experience.
Amazon IS the place where you can still sell downloadable digital content (for Kindle). eBay is NOT really the place to sell downloadable digital content.
Amazon IS the place to sell physical books – much more so than eBay.
While I am on the warpath at this time to sell public domain content on eBay – I’m still working on “HOW” I can sell the same content on Amazon.
It’s important for all of us to remember that we don’t HAVE to sell everything we create on Amazon. If we have content we are banned from publishing on Amazon… we can still sell it on eBay, Etsy, our own website and a variety of other sales channels.
How Debra Was Exposed To Public Domain
Way back in the “old days” – I found this video from James Jones. This was my very first introduction to the possibilities for using public domain content This video is really hard to find these days… I stumbled on it today and wanted you to see it.
This was when I still “believed” in the public domain expertise of James Jones and watched this video over and over…
After you watch this short video (which is over 5 years old) ask yourself this “Why didn’t Debra start selling public domain products then“? *giggle* I ask myself that question nearly every day.
I think you will also get a ton of ideas when you read this old PDF transcript of a James Jones and Terry Gibbs:
p.s. If you want real training for re-writing public domain content so you will never get “slapped” by Amazon again – I do have a really good training package where I walk you through exactly what I did to publish my own re-written public domain content “everywhere”.