Book Publishing and Piracy in Nigeria

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NLIPW Copyright Law Volume 1 Number 9


(Book Publishing and Piracy in Nigeria)

October 27, 2013

Content Sources

  1. The Journal of Academic Librarianship
  2. Pacific Northwest Library Association (PNLA) Quarterly
  3. Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC)
  4. Wilolud Online Journals
  5. World Journal of Library Administration

Book Piracy in Nigeria: Issues and Strategies by Christopher Nkiko, The Journal of Academic Librarianship, October 13, 2013

This paper looks at book piracy in the Nigerian publishing industry and identifies the different forms in which this type of piracy is exhibited. According to the author, some of the major forms of book piracy in Nigeria include: illegal reprography; abuse of publication rights; circumvention of e-book versions; translation of books without the permission of the owner of the copyright in the book; hi-tech reproduction overseas; and local reproduction of fast moving titles using newsprint or poor textured paper.

The paper highlights some of the causes of book piracy, which include poverty, book scarcity, ignorance of the copyright laws by the public and the uncooperative attitude of some countries in endorsing international treaties on intellectual property rights.

The paper makes recommendations aimed at reducing book piracy in Nigeria including: national book policy and commissioning of local authorship, revitalization of libraries, awareness and enforcement of copyright laws, cost reduction strategies; sanctions on countries showing complacency towards piracy; special algorithms to detect illegal downloads; and security printing devices. Read more

Problems of the Book Publishing Industry in Nigeria: The Onibonje Publishers Experience after 50 years by Iwu Juliana James, Pacific Northwest Library Association (PNLA) Quarterly, Volume 75 No. 3 ( Spring 2011)

This research examines the early history of book publishing in Nigeria using the Onibonje Publishers, a sole proprietor and family venture in Nigeria, as a case study. Using the SWOT analysis, the research looks at some of the strengths, challenges, basic problems and opportunities associated with the book publishing in Nigeria. Some of the challenges highlighted include infrastructural problems, lack of marketing programmes, under-capitalization, substandard production, inadequate productivity of Nigeria’s paper-mills and the book reading culture of Nigerians. Read more

Survey of Copyright Piracy in Nigeria by the Nigerian Copyright Commission with the support of the Ford Foundation, June 2008

The Nigerian Copyright Commission (NCC), with the support of Ford Foundation, carried out a survey in order to assess the impact of piracy in Nigeria. Some of the main objectives of this survey were: to identify the most prevalent forms of piracy as it relates to musical works, films and literary works; to identify sources of pirated products and distribution channels in Nigeria; to identify the economic and sociological factors responsible for the high rate of piracy in Nigeria and to assess the knowledge, beliefs and practices of the Nigerian public as it relates to copyright works. The survey also looked at the impact of the operating statutes and regulations in Nigeria and enforcement of same by the relevant regulatory agencies. Read more

Author, Publisher and Bookseller: A Tripartite Synergy in Nigerian Book Industry by J. E. Nwogu and T. A. Akinde, Wilolud Online Journals, 2007

This paper examines the role of authors, publishers and booksellers in the development of the book publishing industry in Nigeria. The paper begins by tracing the history of the book publishing and the printing industry in Nigeria and highlights some of the constraints to the development of the industry.

According to the author, some of the constraints include: the lack of professionalism (no special training required) before engaging in this type of work; gross undercapitalisation; piracy; ineffective copyright protection and indiscriminate photocopying; poor sales promotion, book distribution and infrastructural facilities; new challenges imposed by the advent of the Internet (online, self-publishing and open access) and multimedia publishing; tax on educational materials; and the importation of publishing equipment and raw materials needed for the book publishing industry, which often attracts high import duties.

The paper makes recommendations aimed at promoting the industry in Nigeria which include: the development of university presses; securing licensing rights from foreign publishers; training, education and continuing education of the tripartite actors by major stakeholders; strengthening the local capacity through tax reliefs and international conventions and agreements; increased sales’ promotion (Exhibitions, Trade Fairs, Book Festivals, Book Signings, Write Shops, Illustration Workshops etc); creating a fund to support local publishing; development of libraries throughout Nigeria; and embracing modern technology. Read more

Effect of Piracy on Publishing and Spread of Knowledge in Nigeria by Uduak U. Enang, World Journal of Library Administration, Vol. 1, No. 1, August 2013, PP: 06- 14

This paper begins by looking at the importance of publishing and how publishing infrastructures contribute to the growth of intellectual culture. The author notes that book publishing is one of the oldest businesses in Nigeria, with the first printing press established in Calabar in 1846. The paper discusses how piracy is affecting publishing and spread of knowledge. Remarkably, the paper concludes that piracy has positively affected the lives of people as some Nigerian due to the high costs of originally published materials, prefer to buy pirated copies and that piracy would not lead to the dearth or death of creativity. Read more



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About Bob Aroture 564 Articles
Bob is a Senior Editor and Content Development Manager at Nigerian Law Intellectual Property Watch. He holds a BS degree, with a major in biochemistry. He works directly with the Newsroom Team. His focus areas are technology and innovation, and pharmaceutical technology. Email: