• Random House sued ME; not the other way around.
  • Random House filed suit to silence the facts I was posting on the web.
  • There has been NO trial on the facts, only the Random House effort to prevent a trial.
  • The only sworn statements made under penalty of perjury are affidavits from me and my experts, nothing from RH.
  • The judge refused to consider any expert analysis.
  • Despite suing me first, Random House & Sony UNsuccessfully demanded that I pay the $310,000 in legal fees they spent to sue me.
  • Contrary to the Random House spin, I am not alleging plagiarism of general issues, but of several hundred very specific ones.
  • This is not about money. Anything I win goes to charity.

Legal filings and the expert witness reports are HERE

I have a second blog, Writopia
which focuses on Dan Brown's pattern of falsehoods
and embellishment of his personal achievements.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

UNequal Justice & Court Shopping

While I can't talk much about the long conversation from yesterday's conference call with my attorneys -- both New York and Los Angeles -- one of the more interesting conclusions was that had this case been heard here on the West Coast, I would clearly have won. This conclusion is based on written decisions by both the Federal District Courts as well as the Courts of Appeals, namely the Second (New York) and Ninth (West Coast.)

Equally as clear, was the fact that Random House filed against me in New York (rather than engage in a civil conversation) in order to venue-shop for a court most likely to give them a better decision.

Judicial enforcement of copyright infringement law, you see, varies greatly from place to place in America. Federal courts in the East lean toward publishers and denying trials on the facts and merits of a case while federal courts in the West tend to favor allowing trials to move forward and have the disputed facts heard in court -- something that Random House knows is bad for them.

It's also bad for justice when someone can shop around for a court and bad when equal justice can be had in one region but not another. Federal laws are supposed to be consistent from place to place and they are not in this case which (among other factors) results in many of the quirky things I have been blogging about.

Just as cognitive dissonance forces us to reconcile our ways of thinking about things, this judicial dissonance also demands a change.

Fortunately, the American judicial system allows for that. It's called the U.S. Supreme Court.

There is, of course, no guarantee that the Supreme Court would consider my case (called "granting certiorari") in the event that the Second Circuit Court of Appeals upholds the District Court's decision.

However, one of the things the Supreme Court is known for liking is the opportunity to decide a case where it can reduce or eliminate judicial dissonance and make an area of federal law more coherent.

Yes, it's rare that a client actually has a conversation with half a dozen experienced attorneys on both coasts to talk about going after the standard. And yes, it may bankrupt me. My wife and I have discussed that and we're prepared to move forward. Otherwise, what sort of example are we setting for our children? We do not want to teach them to stand up for what is right ... except when it's not personally convenient.

I am heartened when I look at how the Supreme Court has looked at copyright cases it has heard coming out of the Ninth Circuit. While the Ninth Circuit has a reputation for having more decisions overturned by the Supreme Court than any other appeals court, it enjoys the OPPOSITE distinction when it comes to copyright.

We have as long row to hoe here, but there's no alternative. We gotta do the right thing.


Blogger Mark said...

It's a gutsy move. In a company town everything is in favor of the company. Publishing:NY, Film: LA. A case against Warner Bros would have met the same fate there.

Brian Grazer was on Charlie Rose last night talking about DVC. "Well researched," he called it and wanted it even as an arc before the success. Having a big publisher really is the key to this business. A small house will always be crushed in the competition.

Fri Aug 12, 07:53:00 AM PDT  
Blogger Lewis Perdue said...

Well, Grazer is OBVIOUSLY oblivious to the fact that the research has been proven to be crap AND ...

That Dan Brown will not file an affidavit that he actually did research.

Eventually, lies will catch up to people.

Fri Aug 12, 08:02:00 AM PDT  
Blogger dell said...

You deserve to get hometowned. By trying to discuss the matter before filing suit, or even giving Random House a hint of a possible claim, you invited them to file a declaratory judgment. Don't blame them because you didn't file first.

Fri Aug 12, 12:18:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Mark said...

Well the appearance of research anyway. People think he did some and he did some, not original research, but he read HB HG and your books to get the idea.

The tough part is the Nazi treasure story angle versus the married Jesus. That's the logline.

Fri Aug 12, 12:40:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Lewis Perdue said...

Dell: if you r5ead the filings, I tried multiple times over a YEAR to discuss the matter.

It is simply untrue that they had no warning or that I went public without trying to discuss things with them.

Fri Aug 12, 02:41:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Mark said...

dell seems to have his timelines and assumptions moving a bit ahead of his facts, or attempts to find them. That's the most common theme among Internet critics.

Fri Aug 12, 03:38:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Lewis Perdue said...

Mark, I agree. Also the fact that most of the comments are already subjects of previous posts.

Fri Aug 12, 03:49:00 PM PDT  

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