The Alliance of Independent Authors welcomes the news that three authors have filed suit against self-publishing service provider Author Solutions (ASI), and its parent company, Penguin Pearson.
Law firm Giskan & Solotaroff, on April 26, has filed a class action complaint on behalf of writers Kelvin James, Jodi Foster, and Terry Hardy. The complaints listed in the action won't come as any surprise to authors who follow the activities of ASI: overcharging for services, up-selling editing and marketing packages of poor quality, deceptive practices, poor royalty reporting and nonpayment of monies due. (For a previous analysis of ASI, see this earlier post.)
The company's true business is not publishing, the complaint alleges, but selling services to authors.
And not doing it well. As we point out in our recent book, ASI is the company about whom ALLi most regularly receives complaints.
Filed in the Southern District of New York, the suit seeks damages in excess of $5 million and, reports Publishers Weekly, “is before a judge that has some background in publishing — Judge Denise Cote, currently presiding over the ongoing e-book price-fixing scandal.”
The full text of the complaint can be seen on the website of ALLi Watchdog, Victoria Strauss, who has fought a brave and consistent battle against ASI for years.
See also this two-part report from ALLi Services Watchdog Mick Rooney of The Independent Publishing Magazine and author and blogger, David Gaughran's recent opinion piece on what is wrong with trade brands like Penguin and Simon and Schuster linking with ASI.
ALLi's guide to Choosing A Self-Publishing Service
tells you all you need to know to choosing an ethical, reputable and useful Self Publishing Service. Edited by ALLi Director, Orna Ross, and put together by our watchdog team — Ben Galley and Mick Rooney — with an introduction by Victoria Strauss, it compares twenty representative providers across royalties, terms and conditions and tells you the do's and don't's to picking the service that's right for you.