My Copyright Litigation Story
In 2016 I was perusing books on Amazon with a friend when we stumbled across a book that seemed to be problematic.
That book was in the same genre as my book, PART-TIME PRINCESS ©2014. The problematic book ©2016 had many of my character names (for same roles), most of my plot, and lots of my words that I had written and published over two years previously in PART-TIME PRINCESS.
I sent both paper books to my entertainment attorney who read them agreed with me. My attorney sent a C&D to the author in question. The author’s attorneys denied the C&D. My attorney no longer practiced litigation and advised me to find a litigator. And so I did.
That litigator contacted the opposing parties, presented evidence, and talked with them, but to no avail. We tried our very best to settle this whole thing without making it public, but the statute of limitations for copyright infringement was running out, and I was left with the option to confront or not confront.
And so in 2019 I chose to confront. This was not easy or frivolous for me. I tracked and graphed written passages from both books. I hired expert witnesses. I researched and compiled side by side comparisons. This was the toughest thing I’ve ever done.
The judge decided to not look at the evidence as submitted by my attorneys and I did not get the judicial ending that I wanted.
I filed for an Appeal and was granted one in Federal Appeals Court. At this point I was offered mediation. I decided to pursue mediation and end this heart-breaking process. I hope you never have to go through this. Here’s my update:
Re: My Copyright Lawsuit #Settlement
I recently learned things were said about me/my CRI suit on public pages in January 2021. This post is to set my record straight.
I stuttered at an early age, grew shy. Books saved me when I was kid. #STORIESMATTER. As a Chiropractor, I worked with Erin Brockovich. Inspired by her pursuit to help people, I pitched her story to Jersey Films. “ABC 20/20 Primetime” recently featured me on their show because of my part in this. #STORIESINSPIRE.
In 2010 a small press published my 1st book. After that I went Indie. 30 books later, I’m a USA Today Bestselling author.
I wrote “Part-time Princess: Royally Wed” – a ‘sweeter’ romantic comedy while my mom was dying. I published it in 2014 and dedicated it to her. This STORY MATTERED.
But then the ‘thing’ happened and in October 2019, I bit the bullet and sued for Copyright infringement. In January 2021, Judge Wu ruled against me WITHOUT LOOKING at my evidence.
Legal minds encouraged me to Appeal. I filed Notice to Appeal in Feb 2021. It hit home that I already spent 4 ½ years on this and really didn’t want to spend 2 more. When the Federal Appeals Court system offered Mediation, I said “Yes.”
Parties mediated in May 2021 and a SETTLEMENT & AGREEMENT was reached and signed JUNE 16 – 17, 2021.
Mediation is a compromise. Both “Plaintiffs and defendants stand behind their respective allegations and denials…” “Defendants deny any wrongdoing whatsoever…”
I also STICK BY my allegations 100 percent. But as of June 2021 — NOT January 2021 as promoted on other sites — this CRI litigation is OVER.
To give back to the #amwriting community — I’ve started a CRI “RESOURCE” page on my website. There are links to articles, experts, blogs, etc. It’s in the early stages, a WIP, a library of sorts. It’s NOT a discussion board.
TY from the bottom of my black and blue heart to all the generous, kind, smart folks who supported me during this visit to the 9th realm of hell. You are amazing! Special thanks to #ClaireRyan who provided her graphed out plagiarism analysis, her conclusions, and her copyright infringement comparison expertise.
My case is public record.
You can Google it and find it. It is an interesting read for persons who believe they have been repurposed by others using AI / text spinners / computer software for words, stories, or photographs.
To all you book lovers and hard-working, STORYTELLERS: You inspire me. Be fierce. Be brave. Stick up for yourself /your works. You don’t have to fight EVERY battle. Pick the ones that matter the most. Be kind. Help those in your community. Keep writing. Remember your voice matters. Your stories matter. You matter.
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