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One Author Explains Her Role in the Lendink Lynch Mob

The hot story in digital publishing this week was the Lendink Witch Hunt.

A little over a week ago a bunch of authors noticed that a site by the name of lendink was showing covers of their ebooks. Without confirming what was going or or what the site was doing, these authors flew into a rage and started issuing a shitstorm of demands that their ebooks be removed from the site and that Lendink stop pirating their ebooks.

I covered this story myself on Monday. I didn't really know what was going on, so I reached out to a bunch of the authors who had issued the demands. I've just heard back from one of the authors.

I'm going to assume that everyone knows about Lendink by now and that you know the site wasn't committing piracy. But if you're finding this for the first time, you can read my post from Monday, Lendink's response, or you can read this.

The author in question is O. G. Tomes (here's her blog). I found her via Lendink's Facebook page. That's where Tomes had posted 2 bogus DMCA takedown notices in which she says that Lendink was hosting a copy of her ebook. You can find a copy of the notices here (search for the name "Tomes").

Not only is she not contrite, she still doesn't understand what Lendink did nor the terms of her contract with Amazon. Her ignorance is so mind-boggling broad that it will stand as a milestone for future generations of authors.

Here is Tomes' explanation for her part in the lynch mob:

This situation is a sad one and warrants an explanation for all the parties involved. If at any time I had received a reply from Lendink or Amazon had taken a clearer stance maybe I could have avoided being compelled to demand removal of my works; ie their links and covers. I was never contacted by anyone requesting permission to display my works for sale or lend by Lendink. I did not authorize them to pursue their activity of listing any of my books. The site openly admitted to losing their affiliation with Amazon yet continued to work toward that moment when they could once again get paid for their referrals. My attempts to contact Lendink to answer my requests for information on their procedures were ignored. Attempts to join the site to find out the information were blocked. I followed "Lendink's" directives for filing notices directly from their site. I have attached a copy to this email.

I think the matter warrants discussing but in a rational manner.

At this time, I must state that I do not grant permission for this conversation or any information contained or attached herein to be used in any public forum.

Sincerely, O. G. Tomes

First, let me say that I don't need her permission (snicker) to post a copy of her email; I'm posting it for its news & commentary value so I have a clear fair use justification.

I'm at a loss to figure out where she is the most wrong. Is it the fact she admits she didn't confirm exactly what lendink was doing before sending the fraudulent takedown notices? Or is it the way she blames Amazon and Lendink for her own ignorance of the contracts she signed?

Folks, I don't even have to look at her contracts with Amazon to know that she agreed to everything and anything that lendink was actually doing. And from what I can tell, all Lendink did was show her covers; the site didn't have a copy of her ebooks (that's what she claimed in the takedown notice).  Everything Lendink did was allowed by Amazon's contracts with their suppliers. These clauses are in the contracts so Amazon's affiliates can do their marketing thing and boost Amazon's sales.

And you can ignore everything she writes about Lendink losing their relationship to Amazon; the site might not have been able to earn a commission as an affiliate but it still had permission from Amazon to post the images. Trust me, that's an unrelated technical matter having to do with how sites (such as the blog you're reading right now) can pull info from Amazon (only with Amazon's permission, basically).

Now, you might be thinking that Lendink should have limited the offered titles to only ones which were lendable. So far as I know that is not information which can be accessed from outside Amazon. All lendink could do was offer ebooks which its members had listed on the site.

Perhaps you think that Lendink should have only shown the titles listed by members? Maybe,  but listing titles which weren't lendable is at worst annoying, not piracy. What's more, titles shown to potential readers will sometimes result in a sale. Is that really such a bad thing?

I know that I have at least a few authors who follow this blog so I'd like to make a suggestion.

Folks, don't be this person. Don't join a lynch mob, but more importantly please for the love of Phil make sure you know what the hell is going on before you make an idiot of yourself.

If you don't know what's going on, ask someone.

One of the more infuriating parts of this lynch mob story is that there are a dozen or more places where the authors could have asked questions before joining the lynch mob. There's Goodreads, Wattpad, Amazon's own forums, MobileRead, Twitter, and those are just the ones I can think of off the top of my head.

Heck, if you don't understand a situation you could always ask me. I might not answer your email, but I would love to find and crush a real pirate site.  What's more, I just love finding information. And at the very least I can point you in the right direction.

And if you don't have a network of people you can ask for advice, what the hell are you waiting for? Go start building one.

image by Kiwi NZ

About Nate Hoffelder (11135 Articles)
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader: "I've been into reading ebooks since forever, but I only got my first ereader in July 2007. Everything quickly spiraled out of control from there. Before I started this blog in January 2010 I covered ebooks, ebook readers, and digital publishing for about 2 years as a part of MobileRead Forums. It's a great community, and being a member is a joy. But I thought I could make something out of how I covered the news for MobileRead, so I started this blog."

59 Comments on One Author Explains Her Role in the Lendink Lynch Mob

  1. Great post, lots of good information!

    You don’t have to be an Amazon Affiliate to use the Amazon Product API, but used in conjunction, it lets you earn the referral fees.

    My understanding of how the site worked is it would let lenders and borrowers search for a book. If the book wasn’t listed, they could enter in the title, and an ItemLookup request would populate the listing.

    I’m not sure at what point a book would be checked to be sure it was lending enabled. I believed they hoped people would buy the book if they didn’t want to wait or if it was not lending enabled.

    Mentions the removal of all non-lending eligible books, apparently their validation script wasn’t working. But that was over a year ago.

    In the time since then, Dale got sick and the site fell into neglect. Its not unreasonable to assume that books that weren’t eligible began to end up listed on the site again. I don’t think this excuses the authors at all. Due diligence would have still revealed the books as being un-lend-able.

  2. Thank you for posting about the Amazon API.

    Folks, I glossed over the details in the comment above due to the length of my post.

    And folks, this is what I mean by finding someone who knows what the hell is going on. Kai explained details that OG didn’t understand. You need to be acquainted with people like Kai (and me).

  3. I’m an author. When this Lendink thing started, I took steps to assure myself that the site was legit. As far as I could see, it was doing nothing wrong.
    So I said so. Nobody listened, or if they did, they deliberately misunderstood. It amazed me, how little the authors knew about the terms of their e-contracts. Partly, I think, because some of them signed their contracts on the advice of their agents, so they weren’t familiar with Amazon’s terms and conditions, and they hadn’t educated themselves about it.
    Some publishers, investigated, satisfied themselves that Lendink was doing nothing wrong and announced it on the author loops – the fuss was a lot less there. Some left the authors to it, or took too long to reply.
    But trying to stop the mob was like trying to turn the tide, once it got going. The Canute effect (except Canute was trying to prove a point, not actually turn the tide back). The arguments, like the letter above (which, by the way, I wouldn’t have published, just from an ethical point of view – there are lots of blog posts scattered around that you could have used instead) were spurious and mind-bogglingly uninformed.
    It’s not just that piracy has scared authors half to death, it’s that they don’t understand. Either they should leave dealing with suspected piracy to their agents and publishers, or they should fully inform themselves.

  4. “Either they should leave dealing with suspected piracy to their agents and publishers, or they should fully inform themselves.”

    Exactly right. The independent author needs to be up to speed on this stuff (as well as editing, formatting, cover design, etc., etc.)

    In the past, agents and publishers purported to handle such matters — though in my experience, they weren’t much use. I once had to hire a lawyer to help get an offending edition pulped, and even then I wrote the letters myself! He just checked them over and sent them off on his headed paper :-)

    FWIW I’m miffed that Lendink is no more. What’s not to like about a harmless site that helped boost word-of-mouth?

  5. Like Richard, I’m saddened by the demise of this company. I wasn’t familiar with them prior to this. In retrospect, if I had known more about the company, I would have reached out more forcefully to help them set the record straight. Kudos to April Hamilton and the other few for standing up early and talking common sense.

    In the early stages of the panic, I was contacted by several concerned authors, both privately via email and on Facebook. All my replies were the same – I didn’t know about the company, I was familiar with the concept, and I suspected they were probably legit, and suspected their impact on authors was overall beneficial. Here’s one of my responses:

    Over the last four years, here at Smashwords we’ve faced probably hundreds if not thousands of mini-panics, many of which might have developed into raving angry mobs as developed around this one had we not taken steps to diffuse them. For example, dozens of times we’ve had authors claim illegal copies of their books were being distributed by our retail partners, simply because the author didn’t realize we were a distributor (!!). Dozens of times authors have accused of us withholding their payments, only to discover their mailing address changed, or the gave us the wrong PayPal address. Dozens of times, our retail partners have been accused of under-reporting sales (“surely, my book couldn’t be selling so poorly” is the common refrain). Over time, these chicken little experiences have helped us improve our onsite-communications (one of the reasons for our Site Updates feature), we’ve improved our FAQs and registration emails, and we’ve also leveraged our growing community to ensure they’re educated about who we are and what we do, so they too can help diffuse individual panics before they become flash mobs or worse. If your own community at large can’t defend you, you’re toast. This is not something you do once and forget about. It’s an ongoing effort to maintain transparent and effective communication. It’s also a challenge to be careful that your information disclosure isn’t misinterpretated by the chicken littles. If you haven’t build a community, you’re vulnerable to these flash mob panics.

    There are authors out there who are inclined to panic at the first sign of uncertainty. These panics operate in vacuums of information. If the panicked author finds even one other author who either experienced the same thing or fears the same thing, then two dots become a line and this further confirms their worse fears and increases their conviction of injustice. Lesson to entrepreneurs: fill the vacuum with truth and transparency.

    I hope this can become a teachable moment for both authors and fellow entrepreneurs. For authors, take a chill pill before you add fuel to the rumor mill. Your biggest threat is obscurity, not piracy. Stop fearing pirates. Pirates are irrelevant to you. If someone really wants to steal your book, they will, and they wouldn’t have been paid customers anyway.

    For entrepreneurs, communicate often. Build a community of users who understand your mission and the positive you’re trying to bring into the world. Empower your supporters with full transparency so they can act as reasoned and informed counterbalances to irrational panic and rumor mongering. If people are accusing you of malicious or nefarious actions, counter it forcefully backed by truth and transparency.

    I recall when I received my first inquiry about them, I visited the site. My first impression was that it looked professional, so that was somewhat reassuring to me, but as I recall, some key elements were missing…. 1. They were obviously at the center of a raging panic storm, yet there was no visible communication on the site to acknowledge the panic or address the issues. I don’t recall seeing any form of attempt to combat the rumors – no FAQ, no alerts, no site updates, no attempt to set the chicken littles straight. I was looking for ammunition to defend the company, but unless I missed it, it wasn’t there. I shouldn’t have to look so hard for ammunition when my intention is to defend you. 2. I don’t recall seeing any information about the company, or who operated it. Who was the founder, where were they located? I shouldn’t have to do a WHOIS lookup on the domain to learn who’s behind a site. I’m often surprised by the number of new startups I see where there’s absolutely no information about the founders or their location. I don’t care if your startup is in Siberia, Tokyo, London or Preoria, tell me where you are. I don’t recall seeing a press room, where the company showcases press coverage and news announcements, or provides contact information for media. Entrepreneurs, give your community the information they need build confidence, and to earn and deserve their trust.

    In the end, I was unable to find the information I needed to stand forcefully behind the company and defend them, thus my tentative support as shown above in my Facebook post.

    I hope the founders of Lendink do the right thing and make another go of it. Don’t let this unfortunate situation beat you. Learn from it and grow stronger from it. Authors, please think twice before spreading negativity in the world. Although the world is a dangerous place, I find most operators out there are well-intentioned and not out to rip you off.

  6. I’ll grant you that I could have and should have left the author’s name off the post. That was an oversight on my part.

    But the rest of the email is mind-boggling and deserves attention. It’s the kind of mindset that needs to be exposed so other authors can learn from the mistakes.

  7. This is a sound example for the continued relevance of publishers. A publisher would be the one to submit take down notices, but are also more likely to understand when not to do so. They understand the difference between what is legal and illegal as many of these authors do not. Publishers would and do educate their authors on these issues. So it’s not just a matter of being better off with an editor, typesetter and marketing department behind them… authors need publishers so that they don’t do stupid, ignorant things like this.

  8. I listened, Lynne, and I hope there were others who did. Posts from you and Imogen Howson gave a great explanation of what the site was actually about. Along with a bit of personal research they reassured me there was nothing to worry about and I could leave the pitchfork and flaming torch in the cupboard.

    I respect your continuing efforts to try to explain to people who still don’t seem to get it. Or who, even if they’ve been convinced that LendInk was legit, are displaying very harsh attitudes towards the perfectly legal lending of books. If that’s their honest belief they should be picketing their local library by now.

  9. Wow. Solid work, Nate. And a very well-reasoned comment from Mark Coker to boot! Two thumbs up, all around.

  10. These lending services provide a valuable service to the community. All are still in their infancy stages, but frankly, they are providing a meaningful alternative to Overdrive at public libraries. I would love the public library systems to partner with one of these lending services to provide meaningful amounts of lending.

    As for the authors who have mistakenly participated in this witch hunt, I have to wonder how they will compensate lendlink for the damage they have done..

  11. I’m not an author, just a reader, but if you keep up with the ebook world at all, you’re aware of the rules around Amazon’s KDP program and how lending works. It’s amazing to me that actual authors know less about their contracts, and ebooks in general, than I do!

    I also don’t understand the complaints about non-lending books being listed on the site. I follow many book blogs and the whole point is to list books, it’s considered free marketing, isn’t that what authors want?

    As for piracy, people with such a knee-jerk reaction clearly aren’t informed about that either. Piracy doesn’t result in fewer sales, it usually results in more because it’s a form of advertising. People who download pirated copies were never going to purchase them legitimately anyway, hence, no lost sales. This is why authors and publishers who get it offer their books DRM-free. Some even forego copyright.

    As for these uninformed, screeching harpies, I’ve made sure to note them on my do-not-buy list. After reviewing a number of them, it doesn’t look like they write the kind of book I want to read anyway. These authors need to keep in mind that negative marketing is effective as well. To that point, I have thousands of ebooks (legitimately) and don’t ever need to buy one every again. Attacking a legitimate small business without bothering to get the facts does NOT make me want to buy your book.

  12. I think it is VERY IMPORTANT to point out what Mark Coker just stated. He talked about how he wanted to defend Lendink but there was nothing to give him any answers to tell him the company was legit. Many, many authors DID do their research. They also talked to each other.

    This is what Mark Coker said in his posting above: I’m often surprised by the number of new startups I see where there’s absolutely no information about the founders or their location. I don’t care if your startup is in Siberia, Tokyo, London or Preoria, tell me where you are. I don’t recall seeing a press room, where the company showcases press coverage and news announcements, or provides contact information for media. Entrepreneurs, give your community the information they need build confidence, and to earn and deserve their trust.

    In the end, I was unable to find the information I needed to stand forcefully behind the company and defend them, thus my tentative support as shown above in my Facebook post.

    This is Patrick again: Many, many authors researched through the page and could not find the information to support this site as legit. That is Dale’s fault. He LOOKS UNPROFESSIONAL. Not at first glance, but keep looking..his security certificate was also EXPIRED. He failed to respond to ANYONE on his Facebook page or answer emails send to him with concerns of his site. Ignoring concerned authors is not the smartest thing to do either. He deserves PART OF THE BLAME. There were tons of books on Lendink’s site that ARE NOT LENDABLE because the author never made them lendable. Why is that Dale? To say, “Oh, well, who cares. If you clicked on the link it wouldn’t work or you wouldn’t be matched to a lender if that particular book is not lendable.” That screams UNPROFESSIONAL and makes his site look like a PIRATE SITE. Many pirate sites pop up and pretend to lend and look very legit. Pirates have become very sophisticated. Dale should never have had UNLENDABLE books on his site. Dale should have had his site’s purpose clearly stated and explained. Dale should have not have had an expired security ceritificate if he’s pointing readers to books that CAN BE BOUGHT and are not in the lendable program because after all, HE IS NO LONGER ALLOWED TO SELL BOOKS BECAUSE OF THE NEW CALIFORNIA TAX LAW.

    All of these things were huge concerns to authors. He LOOKED LIKE A PIRATE pretending to be a library because his site was not updated, had unlendable books on there and had absolutely no FAQ or information to support him being legit. I’m happy that Mark Coker pointed this out because it is true. I also want to point out that authors DID EMAIL AMAZON AND THERE IS A LETTER FROM AMAZON POSTED TO LENDINK’S FACEBOOK PAGE FROM AN AUTHOR that says we should REQUEST OUR BOOKS BE REMOVED FROM AMAZON. I did nothing until reading that letter from Amazon. I HEARD THIS FROM AMAZON…”REQUEST YOUR BOOKS BE REMOVED FROM LENDINK’S SITE.” So, is not AMAZON PARTLY TO BLAME FOR THIS?

    You say Dale was the victim of a witch hunt and authors did no thinking before requesting their books be removed but you are so VERY WRONG. Many contacted Amazon and asked. Amazon TOLD US TO. You think it horrible that we had a legit business taken down but it sure was not a professional, legit business that we want lending books out with no information for readers and authors to understand the process. Yes, we understand the lending program. We don’t understand unprofessional lenders who also have expired security certicates, who cannot spell many of the authors’ names and titles correctly (which many authors had issues with) and have zero information about the site up. Then to be told by Amazon to request our books be taken down, that was confirmation to many that Dale’s site was a pirate site or a pirate site in the making. Some people said that we ruined Dale’s livlihood? That means we’re taking money away from him. Lending books does not produce money and he was no longer allowed to sell books on his site so how did we break this man?

    Yes, authors need to pay attention but so do businesses who want to play the ballgame and have a site that is not updated, no FAQ, books not lendable on there. Dale needs to carry some of the blame as well. And again, AMAZON is at fault for telling us to request our books be removed. To black ball the authors involved is unprofessional on anyone’s part. We had a site taken down that wasn’t clear and wasn’t updated and had unlendable books on it. We didn’t burn a man’s house down and kill his family. We are not witches. But what about all of you who vow to ruin many an author’s career who DO put food on the table by writing? I rarely fight piracy because it is too hard to fight but I saw how unprofessional this site was and there are some authors who did not want their books associated with that site for that reason alone, whether or not they had the right to request them to be removed for utter unprofessionalism or not, many respectfully asked to have their books removed and those authors should have said why. Their answer might have been: Because all my books are on there and they are not in the lendable program or Because you did not spell the title of my book correctly. Again, Dale never responded to authors who emailed him or posted respectfully on is site. He never said a word until the site was taken down and it was taken down because Amazon told us to request our books be removed. I will post the Amazon letter when I find it. I have spent hours scrolling through the Lendink Facebook page and cannot find it. I have emailed Amazon again asking for it to be resent. Amazon needs to step up and admit their part in this because many, many authors were convinced they were doing the right thing when they saw that letter from Amazon with links to more helpful info from Amazon on their email letterhead.

  13. I heard about this last week and within a couple of minutes on LendInk’s own site I found the information I needed. The piracy issue is clearly explained in their FAQ. The witch hunt was a classic case of going off half cocked. When you do that, you shoot yourself in the foot.

    We all need to be a little bit cautious about what we put out into cyberspace. The Internet never forgets. Like the authors who have made asses of themselves by taking loud offense at negative reviews, the authors who participated in this witch hunt may find it difficult to repair the damage it has done to their reputation.

  14. Before you blame Dale you should go reread the rest of Mark’s comment, specifically the part about Smashwords authors not realizing that SW was a distributor. Those authors had access to the relevant info on the SW website only they never bothered to go look for it.

    Even if Lendink had had the info available I think the lynch mob would have formed anyway. Once the 2 instigators got the idea in their heads that Lendink was a pirate site there was nothing that could have changed their minds or stopped them from convincing others.

    And besides, an absence of the correct info does not justify authors jumping to the wrong conclusion, especially when there was no evidence to support that wrong conclusion.

  15. Patrick: My god, what’s with the obsession about expired security certificate? Why is that relevant in any way to the discussion?

    Someone elsewhere pointed out that lendink did contain information about what could be included/excluded:

    Patrick, it seems that your main accusation boils down to: the site owner did not rescue us from our ignorance. Therefore, the site owner is mostly to blame.

    I’m sorry, but that syllogism just does not compute.

    About the site looking “unprofessional,” etc, why is that even relevant? If I announced on a web page that I have such-and-such a copy of an ebook and is available for linking, it doesn’t matter how crappy that web page looks, the solicitation is legal under current distributor rules. End of story.

  16. I don’t have the link to the letter, but is this the text?

    Hello xxxxx,
    We have NOT authorized to loan your book and have not provided your file to them.
    If you’ve found your work available on an unauthorized website such as, we suggest contacting that website to confirm your rights and request removal of your work. If you distribute your book through other sales channels, you might contact them to inquire as to whether they have authorized the inclusion of your book on

    Our lending program allows a purchaser to lend a title once and does not allow the recipient to re-loan that book. For more information about Kindle book lending, check out this page:

    I hope this helps. Thanks for using Amazon KDP.

  17. (Corrected last paragraph):

    About the site looking “unprofessional,” etc, why is that even relevant? If I announced on a web page that I have such-and-such a copy of an ebook and is available for LENDING, it doesn’t matter how crappy that web page looks, the solicitation is legal under current distributor rules. End of story.

  18. Catherine, I agree with your analysis, but let me suggest another way to look at it: BEFORE AUTHORS ACCUSE A SITE OF PIRACY, THEY SHOULD FIRST VERIFY THAT IT IS POSSIBLE TO ACTUALLY OBTAIN A PIRATED COPY OF THE EBOOK. None of the authors bothered to do this step, and that is why this misunderstanding occurred.

  19. Timothy Wilhoit // 12 August, 2012 at 3:37 pm //

    This one *claims* she did.

    I have grave doubts about the veracity.

  20. Timothy Wilhoit // 12 August, 2012 at 3:42 pm //

    To clarify, she made the claim in the comment section (comment #6) saying “I tested it with my own book, they were doing it live…..NOT through Amazon Kindle loan.”

  21. There was no FAQ. Mark didn’t see it either. A lot of us clicked on it and it was a blank page. And I’ve seen piracy sites that don’t have a click to download the book but if you email them, they will send you a copy of the book. Dale’s site not being professional IS A BIG DEAL, whether or not some of you think it is or NOT. It looked like a Pirate Site. We emailed Amazon asking for clarification. They suggested we ask our books to be removed. We didn’t ask for his site to be shut down. I didn’t. I asked my books to be removed. I have given away over 6,000 copies of my novels and hundreds borrowed out. I’m not against libraries. Other lending sites are crystal clear. This site was not. This site did not respond to authors. We simply asked our books to be removed. I didn’t send hate mail to Dale and threaten his family. I wonder if that’s even true. Dale’s explanation on another blog fell short when he wished all the authors to have ruined careers. Does that sound professional to you? We simply asked our books to be taken down. You people act like we murdered HIS FAMLY, RUINED HIS HOBBY, HIS CAREER. If his site is so legit, he will respond to the authors who emailed him asking for clarification and they will re-open his web page. Many people have offered to help him in this matter. I’ll be the first one to support his site when it is professional like other lendable sites, where authors and readers can read a working FAQ, where there are ONLY LENDABLE BOOKS on his site. That’s a BIG DEAL to me. Many authors who have ZERO LENDABLE BOOKS were on his site and THEY DID NOT UNDERSTAND WHY. That made them also think it was a piracy site. Some of you readers and supporters of Dale who think we just did no thinking are SO VERY WRONG. We fight pirates all the time. Like I said, I rarely engage in it because it so very hard to fight. They pop up overnight constantly and there is the argument that piracy even helps readers find new authors. Dale is partly blame whether any of you agree or not. Mark didn’t say he is to blame but he made a big deal about pointing out that sites need to make themselves clear and legit. Mark is a professional. He didn’t wish ruin on any author’s career. Everyone keeps saying this should be a lesson to all authors. Well, it should be a lesson to Dale too. Look legit. Be professional. Don’t have non-lendable books on your site. That crap about you can’t lend those books anyway and that every author should click the links to see what happens is just that..CRAP. We authors have been dealing with piracy for a long time and again, we have tested pirate sites and emailed them and had files sent to us illegally. There are underground pirates who do this and still look like libraries or like a place for authors to promote their books. And whether any of you believe it or not, AMAZON MOST CERTAINLY TOLD US TO REQUEST OUR BOOKS BE TAKEN DOWN. There are several people to blame but if you look at it from the author’s point of you, you should be able to understand why hundreds of authors were concerned. And if you can’t, you aren’t looking at the whole picture and that is probably because you don’t know enough about piracy and publishing. If Dale’s site was taken to court, I’m still not sure he would walk away free. His site had a lot of gray to it. This is all gray matter. This is part of the ebook evolution. All these new sites poppping up, contracts, lending, piracy. It is all getting ironed out and I’m not using ignorace as an excuse. I’m saying authors did research this site, they did ask, and they asked AMAZON. There were lawyers and agents who thought this site was illegal. There were some publishers who also thought it was illegal or again, a piracy site in the making. If you have hundreds of people very concerned, we have a problem HOUSTON.

  22. Patrick is just like OG Tomes. He’s trying to blame everyone but himself for his part as one of the authors in the lynch mob.

    And Patrick, is there a reason why you are averse to not writing a single rambling paragraph? There’s this thing called the enter key. Please learn how to use it.

  23. Yeah, she made the claim in a comment (days after the takedown) but not her post, which came shortly after the takedown. I don’t believe her. Plus she got the details wrong. lendink’s Facebook page is still up.

    And in a post dating today (Sunday 12 August), she has started waffling on whether the piracy really happened. If she really had proof, she wouldn’t be waffling.

  24. There was no lynch mob. There were authors who didn’t like being associated with a site that had all their UNLEANABLE BOOKS, NO FAQ AND DID NOT RESPOND TO EMAILS. When authors wrote Amazon and asked for clarification, they told us to request our books be taken down. And you didn’t respond to a single thing I said. You were critical of the way I wrote my post? Wow. You refuse to address thee issues I’ve brought forth. The photo on this blog post is even offensive. There was no lynch mob. Authors did what agents told them to do, what lawyers told them to do and what Amazon told them to do. Mark wrote to voice his opinion. He was very correct in what he said. No one seems to agree with what Mark said, you simply skim over that. I’m not ignorant and neither are the hundreds of authors who questions Dale’s unprofessional web site. Without knowing all the reasoning and facts for why authors asked their books be removed, you call us a lynch mob without asking us. Now who is the lynch mob? We have blogs with our names listed to black ball us. That is A LYNCH MOB. And I have seen many authors come forward on some of these blogs and respectfully apologize and you rip them a new one. Funny how you call us a LYNCH MOB yet you respond in the same way but worse. Taking down Dale’s site does not hurt him financially unless he was making money illegally via the authors who have written the books so where is the harm? Oh…his hobby? Well he needs to get a hobby that he can do that doesn’t scream of unprofessionalism and look like a pirate site to many, many professional people; including lawyers, agents and publishers. I offered an explanation to this unfortunate happening and it is very valid. All this is new…Amazon, B&N, lending libraries, new hobby sites popping up as lenders..there is a lot of gray. And this happened for a reason..not because people hate Dale or his site. Because there needs to be more clarity across the board..from websites like Dale’s, from Amazon, from authors. We need to communicate better. Dale didn’t communicate at all. Until it was too late. Amazon DID communicate and told us to have our books removed. Now I’d like to see some other authors, agents, lawyers, publishers step up and join this conversation, instead of all the people who like to scream lynch mob. I’m really, really tired of some of you acting like those authors deserve a death sentence or something. These are real issues that need to be discussed within the digital world.

  25. Is this it?,122064.msg1816320.html#msg1816320

    Hello xxxxx,
    We have NOT authorized to loan your book and have not provided your file to them.
    If you’ve found your work available on an unauthorized website such as, we suggest contacting that website to confirm your rights and request removal of your work. If you distribute your book through other sales channels, you might contact them to inquire as to whether they have authorized the inclusion of your book on

    Our lending program allows a purchaser to lend a title once and does not allow the recipient to re-loan that book. For more information about Kindle book lending, check out this page:

    I hope this helps. Thanks for using Amazon KDP.

  26. Its hard to have a discussion when you shout other people down.

  27. I understand how you feel but I don’t think anyone is reading his comments. The lack of paragraphs render the comments as an impenetrable unreadable babble.

    On the plus side, if Patrick writes books in the same style as his comments he is virtually piracy proof. No one will read his crap anyways.

  28. From the very first posts on the first day, there were authors and others answering and explaining how and why Lendle was legit. (I also thought the site’s FAQ explained it just fine!) A Google would have shown the answers.
    At least one publisher took a look and assured the author the site was good.
    One author posted that she tried to borrow a non-lendable book and was simply given the option to buy it.

    But all those objective explanations were brushed off in favor of spreading accusations that had no basis other than suspicion. Some continue even now. Others are trying to blame the victim.

    The site was taken down within two days. I can easily see how a webmaster would be overwhelmed to respond that quickly, even if he got the messages the first day.

  29. I’m not going to read that giant block of text, but I am going to respond to your first claim that ‘there was no FAQ’.

    Yes, there was. I was informed of the existence of by one of my authors, who learned of it from an *OMGzPirate* blog post by some author or another.

    We both immediately went to the site and looked at it. Our books were all listed, and the buy buttons led to Amazon, which clued me into the fact that it was an affiliate site.

    Then, I clicked on the FAQ link and read the FAQs, which were clearly explained what Lendink was doing. I even clicked on the blog link to look through posts there, which gave me the information that the site’s owner was a California resident.

    My assessment, as both a publisher and indie author, was that everything was aboveboard. My reaction was ‘Yay, free promo!’

    All of the above took less than FIVE MINUTES.

    By the following day(Aug. 3rd), I could see the hysteria levels rising and wrote a short blog post telling everyone to chill out, Lendink was actually a GOOD thing.

    You obviously didn’t listen to us. 😉

  30. Here is a copy of LendInk’s FAQ:

    I don’t see how it could have been any more clear, or at the very least, given people enough information to stop and ask more questions before they not only assumed, but proclaimed guilt.

    It’s obvious that many, if not most, of the authors didn’t even take a minute to read the FAQ, since the answers were right there.

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