As some of you may know, there are actual discussion forums somewhere in the bowels of amazon.com. Yeah, who knew, right? Anyway, at some point last week a thread was started to discuss the defamation suit that Ellora’s Cave filed against Dear Author.
At some point in the discussion, one of the commenters decided to list all the authors who have so far contributed to the DA/JL defense fund, with a note to buy books by those authors via their amazon listings.
Interestingly, a large number of those donors are not EC authors and some of them are not authors at all.
Yesterday, a newly minted twitter account was created. At first, it was simply Pub Net (@pubnt), but it soon added the tag, “Scouts for Publisher Protection. Not associated with Ellora’s Cave.”
I mean, because those poor, poor, prosecuted publishers! Clearly, they need self-appointed vigilantes, they are victimized so!
Just as clearly, any self-appointed publisher protector worth its salt must specify just which one publisher they are absolutely not associated with.
At any rate, the Nut Pub started tweeting the link to that list, using the #notchilled hashtag, with dire warnings to many of the bigger publishing houses about how the authors listed were “suing a publisher” and urging publishers to blacklist them. A second round of tweets, complete with “ETA” and use of all caps, clarified that the authors were “PARTICIPATING” in a suit against a publisher.
How exactly donating to someone’s legal fund means the donors are party in the suit itself escapes me, but then certain people’s logic is anything but.
And let’s not even get into who is suing who, or how stupid someone at any of the big publishing houses would have to be not to catch on–by, say, reading the title of the discussion on the top of the page–to the fact that Nut Pub got it all ass-backwards.
It is my not-humble opinion that Nut Pub is a poorly disguised sockpuppet account by TE/JB or someone else intimately linked to either TE/JB or Ellora’s Cave, and that the tweets–which anyone with two working brain cells knows going in would be ignored by the big publishing houses–are aimed at, once more, intimidating EC authors into keeping quiet.
One cool thing about crowdfunding sites? A working credit card is all that’s required to donate, and those sites are pretty happy about protecting the anonymity of the donors. If one has the time to scroll down a few pages back on the donors list for the Dear Author/Jane Litte legal defense fund, one can easily see that the anonymous donors, and those donating under screen names, heavily outnumber those donating under their own names or their author brand.
Therefore, trying to scare them into keeping quiet will still not stop them from helping Jane out, both by donating and by speaking out elsewhere. They do have choices, and they can explore them–Courtney Milan is but one of the people willing to help them (see a note about confidentiality clauses).
As someone noted on Twitter, shortly after the Nut started tweeting, there was an uptick on donations. Friday, after the fund was announced, almost $40,000 were raised during the course of the one day. By Saturday evening, the fund was closing in on $45,000. I’m pretty sure the romance reading, writing, and blogging community online will soon reach the $50,000 goal.
As Jennifer at BookShelfery said, “Gosh, Tina, I hope that bullet hole in your foot doesn’t hurt too badly.”