Say you’re a publisher. Say you’ve been profitable in the past but have been sliding into financial difficulties. Let’s even say that you’ve had a few past issues with lawsuits over breach-of-contract. Then, let’s just posit that some blogger does some research and finds all sorts of shenanigans:
- There is a set of authors who have not received royalty payments in over six months. EC has blamed this repeatedly on a new accounting system installed in December of 2013.
- CEO Marks admits that “already submitted finished books” will be paid but that “payment may be delayed.”
- The author portal has been shut down where a select few authors could check their royalties.
- Authors request for return of their rights have been rejected and some are told that their books will be published with or without their approval.
- The total sum of unpaid royalties, editor fees, cover artist fees is in the several thousands, perhaps approaching six figures.
So you need to put this behind you, right? You need to make good your commitments to your authors and possibly do the obligatory mea culpa for damage control, right?
What am I thinking? No, what you really do is file a lawsuit against a blogger.
You file a lawsuit. Against a blogger.
Really, Ellora’s Cave? Really? What kind of legal advice are you idiots getting? I’m sorry, you think schoolyard bully tactics are somehow going to protect your collapsing business model? WTF you think will happen in discovery, when the defendant gets to see your books to demonstrate the truth or falsity of the claims in their blog post? WTF you think will happen when you get a well-deserved reputation for being litigious bullies who also happen to screw their authors? Has your legal team dropped the habit of pissing off Judges?
My prediction: Bankruptcy before this ever makes it to court.