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Author Solutions lawsuit discontinued after out-of-court settlement

In the US, a lawsuit brought against Author Solutions, the self-publishing service provider owned by Penguin Random House, has been discontinued following an undisclosed out-of-court settlement, reports Publishers Weekly. The case was first filed in 2013, with a group of authors pressing a number of claims against Author Solutions, including alleging that, as part of company-wide policy, it hid from consumers that ‘“it is a telemarketing operation” based on upselling “worthless” services to unsuspecting authors’. In a motion to dismiss the lawsuit in 2013, Author Solutions’ attorneys countered the plaintiffs’ suit was ‘a misguided attempt to make a federal class action out of a series of gripes’. The settlement came after federal judge Denise Cote denied class action status to the case on 12 August, citing ‘no evidence of any “centrally-orchestrated scheme” to defraud authors’. It had been the argument of the plaintiffs’ attorneys that a common question sat at the core of the case to merit class action status: ‘Did [Author Solutions] engage in a fraudulent scheme to sell authors worthless marketing services?’.  After a ‘shifting roster’ of author plaintiffs, and a narrowing of the case from the initial complaint, only two named plaintiffs, Mary Simmons and Jodi Foster, were left attached to the case.


Category: International news