• 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.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

A Short VERIFIED Synopsis of the Case

Random House's demand for legal fees is outrageous because they started the whole legal process.

Random House has filed a number of briefs that are distorted, inaccurate and have little or no evidence to support their claims, we've provided the court with emails and documents to verify the following:

I began receiving emails from readers in the Spring (March or April) of 2003 expressing their opinions that my work had been plagiarized by The Da Vinci Code. As these emails continued, I finally read the book and was astounded at the similarities. At that point, I wrote a non-threatening, private letter to them seeking information. I mailed the letter and never got a reply.

After several weeks, I went public with their non-reply and resent the letter and also released it to the news media.

The letter is here.

At the time, I was NOT represented by an attorney, had not consulted one, did not anticipate legal action and, in fact, later learned that perhaps half the items in my letter concerned things that were not protected by copyright. Experts, however, would later find hundreds and hundreds of protectible infringements.

In response to my letter, RH sent a nasty reply threatening me with financial ruin should I pursue the issue.

Random House REFUSED to discuss this PRIVATELY or rationally and slammed the door on anything other than court action. My only choice was to take them on publicly or in the courts or just let the matter of infringement drop.

Given that I didn't -- and still don't -- have the resources to sue Random House, I went public.

Contrary to RH's factually incorrect filings that I went public as some sort of campaign to sell books, the truth is that:

(a) I believed that I had been plagiarized and had specific information on which that was based.
(b) I believed that I had written the original works on the topic and,
(c) I wanted credit for my work.

I tried to discuss it privately and they refused.

At NO TIME in this entire unpleasant process did I ever ask for settlement money. At EVERY time, I would have settled for an acknowledgement such as that given to Holy Blood, Holy Grail. (Of course that didn't keep HBHG from suing for plagiarism). But Random House never knew that because they never had the good judgement nor common manners at any time simply to respond without throwing legal hand grenades.

Clearly, Random House decided this should be a legal and public issue, not me.

When you cut through the swamp of verbiage in the Random House briefs, you find their main legal argument is that my position was "objectively unreasonable." That's legalese for "frivolous" as in "filing a frivolous lawsuit."

But I didn't start this legal battle, Random House did.

Random House asserts that I had no objective reason for my lawsuit.

That position, of course, conveniently ignores the extensive work by forensic linguist John Olsson who concluded this was the "most blatant case of plagiarism" he had ever seen.

Olsson's report, the many opinions of readers from around the world as well as research by other experts were certainly objective in that they had no stake in the outcome, had no emotional attachment to the issues and were in a position to judge things from an arm's length.

This lawsuit never had to happen and it was always within Random House's option to be rational and civilized -- a high road not taken.

And now they want me to pay their legal fees!


Blogger Roger said...

This all seems pretty open-and-shut to me. Your case was found frivolous on the merits. You say over and over Random House is hiding something but you don't say what that is or present any evidence of it.

So lose, pay costs. That's the system we all live under in America. Don't like it, move to Russia.

Wed Oct 12, 01:54:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Lewis Perdue said...

Actually, that's NOT the law and you've mistated the facts as well as Random House has.

First of all, the judge did not find my case "frivolous on the merits."

Second, I did not file the case.

Third, the judge EXCLUDED the expert testimony which meets criminal court judicial standards (beyond a reasonable doubt) which is higher than in civil court (preponderance of evidence).

Fourth, the test for whether a case is frivolous or not is "objectively reasonable." The fact that EVEN IF i had filed the case myself (which I did not) the fact that experts and many readers saw plagiarism removes this from the frivolous category.

Fifth, your comments might have more impact if you were not hiding behind an anonymous pseudonym.

Wed Oct 12, 03:25:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Mark said...

He's "Rog." RH is hiding substantial similarities with their bestseller.

Wed Oct 12, 05:00:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Lewis Perdue said...

Yeah ... anonymous is SO cowardly.

Wed Oct 12, 06:33:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Lewis Perdue said...

But you notice that RH has been very good at having proxies do their dirty work.

Then again, standing by one's words is an honorable thing ... and I believe that "honorable" is probably missing from their stylebook.

Wed Oct 12, 06:35:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Mark said...

I don't think RH is sending shills here. They're certainly above that via their economic perch. Their shills come in the form of the high priced lawyers you're fighting. One thing you can say Lew, is this ain't the small time.

Wed Oct 12, 07:15:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Lewis Perdue said...

Yeah, well ... the only thing worst than defending my work is not defending it.

Hobson had a WAY better choice.

Wed Oct 12, 07:21:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Mark said...

It is the horns of the dilemma indeed.

St. Martin's won't give me a galley to review either, so they remember my torrid note when I disvovered the sale of a similar book whose subject matter I was told repeatedly wouldn't sell to a mass audience. Yeah right.

Thu Oct 13, 09:40:00 AM PDT  
Blogger Lewis Perdue said...


Thu Oct 13, 03:06:00 PM PDT  
Blogger Mark said...

Still no galley. The reason is unclear, but once you've identified yuorself as one who had a previous similar book denied under suspicious circumstances they get the message. They have their version. Many times it's easier for the infringing author to sell the same story than the originator.

Sat Oct 29, 08:36:00 AM PDT  

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