"My work may be garbage but it's good garbage." Mickey Spillane
I could not lodge a reply because of a time limit, so I’m putting my rebuttal here. And then I will cross post it across all of my other blogs, including myspace. Here’s what they had to say:
The Write Agenda has not questioned the fact that Writer Beware has helped numerous individuals over time. They have without question. Somewhere along that positive history something has run afoul. The claim that “American Book Publishing has been the subject of at least one police investigation” is a primary example of how Writer Beware has forgotten its original mission and responsibility to provide true information.
This gist of this is that a single bit of information that they are trying to challenge is worth all of the over the top reaction that includes multiple nearly identical blogs and websites. Clearly, they were one of the scammers that Writer Beware caught with their pants down. At one point they even had books out on Smashwords repeating this garbage. I posted a note on Mark Coker’s (the owner of Smashwords) facebook to alert him to what was going on and he banned them for TOS violations.
Had I not known otherwise, I would have thought this was all the work of an angsty hyperactive adolescent. But, no, these are adult(s).
The real “intimidation” is the fact that Victoria Strauss, Ann “A.C.” Crispin and Writer Beware have posted this information, refuse to delete it and refuse to provide documentation that proves the claim. This is neither a grand jury investigation nor an investigative newspaper report. Both of these examples are not entitled to the protections of confidentiality and would be not be deemed privileged information; not to mention the fact that Victoria Strauss is not a professional investigative journalist and would not legally be permitted to claim these privileges to protect herself. The Write Agenda’s request has nothing to do with protecting police investigators. Police investigators could not remotely be claimed as “sources” as Janrae Frank would have you believe. Think about it, don’t individuals go “to” the investigators? Don’t “investigators” write police reports? Isn’t it not true that police reports are assigned incident numbers?
I never claimed that police investigators could be claimed as sources, although a lot of major columnists (New York Times, The Washington Post, et al) have done so. Government officials speak with anonymity to reporters and columnists. That’s how it is done. What TWA were demanding were the names of people who had complained about them. American Book Publishing had it written into the contract that any author complaining about them would owe them $10,000 in damages.
Good way to keep the victims silent.
Contrary to Janrae Frank’s unfortunate “smoke screen,” the information contained within any “police investigation” is subject to discovery, available under the Freedom of Information Act, has an incident number and is not subject to any protections under the law (assuming that it actually exists). The fact here is that there never was a “police investigation” conducted against America Book Publishing. Victoria Strauss, Ann “A.C.” Crispin and Writer Beware know this and they cannot produce 1) an incident number; 2) what was American Book Publishing Investigated for; and 3) the name of the investigating police agency. This is true “intimation” and a it’s scam that has been perpetrated by Victoria Strauss, Ann “A.C.” Crispin and Writer Beware. Now, Janrae Frank has made the personal choice to attempt to deliberately cloud this further; that’s very unfortunate.
Unfortunate? Are you threatening me?
Now let’s take a look at the Freedom of Information Act.
How fascinating. The Freedom of Information Act only applies to the Feds. Guess that means that The Write Agenda could never have used it to harass the state and local officials.
Janrae Frank, who is a well-respected American journalist, knows for a fact that “police investigations” are subject to discovery under the Freedom of Information; it is the most commonly used tool of any investigative reporter. Considering that Ms. Frank chose to weigh in here, without any appreciation for the actual facts, it appears that she is more interested in participating in this viral controversy as a means to help her slumping book sales. Self-serving conduct? It appears to be. Her current Amazon Sales Rankings range from 315,555 to 3,405,977. As an industry standard, an Amazon Sales Ranking of 100,000 equates to 1 copy every 5 days; 2,000,000 equates to 1 copy every 1000 days. (We’ll track this and see if her strategy works.)
Hey, Stupid! Guess what? The majority of my sales are through Smashwords, not Amazon. We quit using Amazon months ago. Check the dates on those books up there and then compare them to what is out from Smashwords! HAHAHHAHAHAHAHA. My book sales are going great, just not through Amazon. HAHAHAHAHAHA!
The Write Agenda then lists a kitchen sink full of officials who would not be affected by the Freedom of Information act. That act is for politics, not local law enforcement. The only way to get information from law enforcement like that would be to file suit against them.
Furthermore, criminal suits as well as civil suits are matters of public record. There would not be a reason to invoke the Freedom of Information Act in the first place. Just call the county clerk’s office. Or go down and look it up for yourself.
I think that about covers it.
Oh, wait a minute. Clearly they are not familiar with the little thing I wrote seven years ago: The Curmudgeon’s Creed.