In another move to combat the spread of counterfeit textbooks, Cengage, Elsevier, McGraw-Hill Education, and Pearson announced an agreement with Barnes & Noble Education to implement the industry’s Anti-Counterfeit Best Practices.
The best practices were developed earlier this year by the Educational Publishers Enforcement Group (EPEG) with the goal of assisting publishers and distributors looking to tamp down on the growing availability of counterfeit print textbooks.
In agreeing to adhere to the best practices program, B&NE will verify the sources of its textbooks. It will also inspect inventory that has a high risk of being counterfeit, and prevent it from infecting the rest of its inventory. And, according to the agreement, when B&NE finds counterfeit books it will share information about the title and supplier with publishers.
B&NE is the third company to commit to the best practices, following Ingram and Chegg. In June, the publishers took even more aggressive action against counterfeiting, filing a lawsuit against Follett that charged Follett with selling counterfeit textbooks.
In a statement, Patrick Maloney, president of B&N College said: “We recognize the importance of protecting the intellectual rights of publishers and authors, and remain steadfast in our ongoing commitment to enforce these rights as we have in the past, now guided by the publishers’ Anti-Counterfeit Best Practices.”
The B&NE agreement was welcomed by publishers.“We are pleased to engage with Barnes & Noble College and like-minded leaders in the industry to demonstrate our solidarity against counterfeiting,” said Suzanne BeDell, managing director, Education, Reference & Continuity at Elsevier. “Working together will help protect the IP of our authors and safeguard the public from piracy’s negative effects.”
EPEG, which was formed by publishers to pursue their legal rights against anyone involved in the distribution or sale of counterfeit textbooks, said it is in discussions with other companies to sign the best practices agreement.