Monday, June 24, 2013

Penguin and Author Solutions File for Dismissal of Class Action Lawsuit

Posted by Victoria Strauss for Writer Beware

In April, the law firm of Giskan Solotaroff Anderson & Stewart filed a class action lawsuit against Author Solutions Inc. and its parent, Penguin Group, on behalf of three plaintiffs, alleging breach of contract, unjust enrichment, various violations of the California Business and Professional Code, and violation of New York General Business Law..

My blog post about the filing, including the full text of the complaint, can be seen here.

Last week, as expected, ASI and Penguin filed a motion to dismiss, labeling authors' complaints "a series of gripes" that would be better served by filing individual suits, and seeking to remove Penguin from the lawsuit. According to Publishers Weekly,
In its motion to dismiss, Penguin attorneys offer a long list of legal and procedural issues for dismissal, as is common practice, and deem the complaint “a misguided attempt to make a federal class action out of a series of gripes.”

The motion also seeks to sever parent company Penguin, noting that “no specific misconduct” by Penguin is alleged. The motion says the case boils down to “alleged typographical and formatting errors and supposed delays in publishing their books,” and some “alleged errors associated with royalty payments owed” on some of the plaintiffs books published under Author Solutions imprints.

The plaintiffs may pursue "individual claims," Penguin attorneys argue, noting that the issues are contract issues "and nothing more," based upon "supposed errors, delays, or underpayments.” The remainder of the complaint and any potential class action, the motion states, should be dismissed.
The full text of the motion to dismiss can be seen here.

4 comments:

Pat Dilloway said...

That's a standard maneuver. Though really you'd think it'd be better for them to deal with one suit than a bunch of little ones. I suppose the thinking is that most of the authors involved would not want to be bothered with the legal costs of a suit and would either settle or forget about it.

Rick Carufel said...

I have proof that at least one of the members of both Amazon.com and goodgreads.com, who, endlessly, personally, stalk, bully and harass indie writers, works for Penquin. Traditional publishing is waging a war against indies who they see as the cause of their free ride coming to an end.

Sebastian Shores said...

It will be so infuriating if this is accepted. The truth is that hundreds of thousands of people have been horribly scammed, mistreated and even left heart broken by Author Solutions, Xlibris, iunviserse and all the other names this giant scamming machine use. This is a million (billion?) dollar fraud industry.
These are just a very very few of the complaints out there. http://www.pissedconsumer.com/reviews-by-company/xlibris.html
http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/directory/author-solutions
http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/directory/iuniverse
http://www.goodreads.com/author_blog_posts/4058249-what-i-learned-about-self-publishing-with-xlibris-the-author-must-have

http://www.complaintsboard.com/bycompany/trafford-publishing-a116272.html

They want them to dismiss the case because 99% of all these individually scammed people can't afford to sue a massively rich fraudulent company by themselves. The business of this compaany has never been selling books. The business is scamming naive wannabe authors and that is all they do.

I wouldn't care if Penguin was removed from the lawsuit because it is Author Solutions that are the major fraudsters although Penguin is guilty for the callous cynical thing they have done getting into bed with these people and buying a stake in them and directing those whose books they don't want to be scammed by Xlbirs Penguin are somewhat less responsible than Author Solutions themselves whom if there was any justice in this world would have all their con-artist employees imprisoned for what they do. Is fraud and conartisty fine as long as you've made a million dollar industry out of it the way Author Solutions have?

Sebastian Shores said...

Pat is wrong the wannabe authors would never forget about it. They just couldn't begin to afford the costs. They would remain heart broken and furious.