Stephenie Meyer has scrapped plans after someone illegally posted a draft of the unfinished Midnight Sun on the Internet. On an August 28th post, Meyer said, “The manuscript that was illegally distributed on the Internet was given to trusted individuals for a good purpose. I have no comment beyond that as I believe that there was no malicious intent with the initial distribution.” In addition, Meyer went on to comment that, “My partial draft of Midnight Sun was illegally posted on the Internet and has since been virally distributed without my knowledge or permission or the knowledge or permission of my publisher. It is important for everybody to understand that what happened was a huge violation of my rights as an author, not to mention me as a human being. As the author of the Twilight Saga, I control the copyright and it is up to the owner of the copyright to decide when the books should be made public. this is the same for musicians and filmmakers. Just because someone buys a book or movie or song, or gets a download off the Internet, doesn’t mean that they own the right to reproduce and distribute it. Unfortunately, with the Internet, it is easy for people to obtain and share items that do not legally belong to them. No matter how this is done, it is still dishonest. This has been a very upsetting experience for me, but I hope it will at least leave my fans with a better understanding of copyright and the importance of artistic control.”
Sadly, this is a prime example of how intellectual theft and unethical digital behavior can have a real impact on an artist and his or her work. You can read Meyer’s response and thoughts on this sad incident at her website.