From The Digital Reader:
Here’s something crazy.
Romance publisher Ellora’s Cave has been having financial issues for the past year or so, but rather than sit down and fix them this publisher has decided that the best solution was a public and messy defamation lawsuit.
Court documents filed today in Ohio have revealed that Ellora’s Cave has filed suit against Jennifer Gerrish-Lampe, an Iowa lawyer who is better known as Jane Litte, the proprietor of one of the best romance book blogs (I did not know it was a pseudonym).
Ellora’s Cave alleges that a recent blog post on Dear Author defamed them, and in addition to suing the publisher also asks for a temporary restraining order – meaning that Dear Author might not be allowed to report that they are being sued.
. . . .
The lawsuit was only filed today, but Jane has indicated that she will fight this suit. She’s looking for a good attorney in the Akron, OH, area with experience in defamation.
. . . .
The cost of defending against a lawsuit can be onerous, leading some to give in. On the other hand, this type of lawsuit can also result in a Streisand effect, attracting even more attention to the story which Ellora’s Cave is trying to bury.
What’s more, even if this lawsuit doesn’t generate even more negative publicity for Ellora’s Cave, it will result in the public airing of all of that publisher’s dirty laundry during the discovery process. If even half of the rumors going around are true, we could well see many authors suing Ellora’s Cave for unpaid royalties.
Link to the rest at The Digital Reader
PG says truth is a defense in a defamation suit. This means that Jane gets to use the discovery phase of the litigation to force Ellora’s Cave to disclose all sorts of information, including information that shows what Jane wrote is true.
Here are some of the things that Jane has written that EC says are false:
1. That employees of EC are going unpaid.
2. That EC authors have not received their royalties.
3. That unpaid royalties, editors’ fees and artists’ fees amount to several thousand dollars.
Basically, Jane gets to find out if these and other statements about Ellora’s Cave are true or not.
As a general proposition, documents filed in litigation are public. Already, the contents of the original Dear Author post that EC found objectionable are included as an exhibit to the complaint. Everyone who reads the complaint will be able to see what Dear Author published about Ellora’s Cave.
Nate mentioned The Streisand Effect. Here’s a definition:
The Streisand effect is the phenomenon whereby an attempt to hide, remove, or censor a piece of information has the unintended consequence of publicizing the information more widely, usually facilitated by the Internet.
Here’s a copy of the Complaint: