So Ao3 fanfics are being stolen. And it's not just Ao3 - I've seen a fic or two from other sites.
The thing is, this isn't the only infringement - and it is infringement - I have seen. A few months ago, I learned that one of my fics was reposted. And I'm going to speak out about it publicly and unflocked, because honestly? That's a problem.
Yes, fanfiction is derivative. (Although there's original works on ebookstree as well.) But it is still, in the end, someone else's work. this means that no one else but the writer has any right to reproduce it in any form without permission. It doesn't matter if you say "Author By Night wrote this last May." It's still under your name, and you never asked them if you could repost it.
Although I know for a fact this sort of thing happened long before the advent of Facebook, twitter and ebooks, I do worry that as fanfiction gains more attention, it's becoming less and less safe. Whereas one of the great things for me as a fanfiction writer is that safety and security. I can dabble in worlds, explore what I think could've happened, might happen, shouldn't have happened. Some people love to write about different pairings. Many aspiring writers use it the way aspiring golfers use driving ranges - a place to hit balls until they're ready for the course. Or maybe it's already a course, but a different kind. Maybe it's just fun, with no purpose other than that. Whatever it is to us as individuals, it's something we work hard on, something we take pride in. Even in we haven't touched fanfiction in years, even if we took it off the internet, it's still ours to share - or not share.
If you see a fanfic of mine, and want to repost it? Just ask. You never know, I may say yes, depending on where you post. But if I say no? Don't repost it. If I don't reply? Don't repost it. If I can't be contacted? Do not repost it.
Are we clear?
ETA: Apparently this is a phishing scam, meaning no actual fics have been downloaded - basically they're taking from search engines. It's still not okay, and I think my general point still stands.