You have a domain registered to your company: absolutewrite.com. As you are the official registrar of this domain, you have responsibility to maintain legal authority over this domain and should be informed about illegal practices.
I am an administrative representative of Alleviate Publications. I have a concern over slanderous material posted on the Absolute Write (absolutewrite.com) forum against Alleviate Publications. I have sent my concerns to the administrator of this domain, MacAllister Stone, but have received no help regarding the matter. In fact, the administrator refused to remove the libel remarks and encouraged me to consult my legal team instead of offering her assistance. I quote her entire response:
"I never remove posts at third party request. Do, of course, feel free to consult your legal team. Mac."
Her response is a little confusing as we are not a third party but indeed an obvious party in the matter. Regardless, not only has the administrator of Absolute Write been informed of the libel material on her website, but she has refused to take it down.
As [redacted] is the registrar of this domain, I thought to come to you first before legal procedures begin.
Alleviate Publications believes in freedom of expression on forum sites such as Absolute Write, but even forum sites are bound by anti-slander laws. According to US and most international law, slander is a false statement made damaging a person or company's reputation. A post on the Absolute Write page has been published that falsely misleads people to believe Alleviate Publications is a fake company. I direct your attention to the following post:
With comments like, "I'd run away as fast as I can" and "charities will only get a few hundred bucks" and "self-published author pretending to be commercially published by a press she's pretending she doesn't own, and subsidising her press with a play-to-pay anthology" this is clearly a case of libel, where slanderous comments have been written and published. These comments are untruths and are misleading and misrepresentative of Alleviate Publications. In the United States and countries worldwide, libel is a liable offence in the court of law.
As I have already pointed out to the administrator of Absolute Write, Alleviate Publications has its information freely accessible to the public both at www.alleviatebooks.com
. Public contact information includes email addresses and a US based telephone number. There are also links to books we have published and we have provided ISBN information on our website for those who would like to look up certain titles. Our publishing house has established relationships with book distributors worldwide. As this information is clearly provided to the public, any statement to the contrary is libel.
As well, Alleviate Publications has responded to any and all persons who have contacted us with any inquiries regarding the Alleviate Awards. We fully understand people may have inquiries, but obviously, the people who have posted on this Absolute Write forum never contacted us. Instead, they decided to post defamatory comments without requesting information from Alleviate Publications first.
I can specifically point out a couple of the following libel remarks:
1.) Regarding the post: "self-published author pretending to be commercially published by a press she's pretending she doesn't own, and subsidising her press with a play-to-pay anthology" - Draya Mooney is an author published by Alleviate Publications who is on the committee for the Alleviate Awards, but she is not the owner of Alleviate Publications nor is she the only author published by Alleviate Publications. We have many authors. Some of the authors we are currently visibly promoting on our website because of their upcoming releases include Laura Tudor, author of God. And Chocolate. ISBN: 978-0-9821297-3-9 and J.D. Brandon, author of the Pepper Moon Club, ISBN: 978-0-9821297-4-6. These titles are clearly shown on our website www.alleviatepublications.com
. Alleviate Publications has been assigned the ISBN prefix 978-0-9821297 by Bowker, the only ISBN agency in the United States. Bowker does not casually assign ISBN prefixes. In fact, it is impossible for an individual to be assigned an ISBN prefix by Bowker. Bowker only assigns ISBN prefixes to registered companies. If an individual were to apply for an ISBN, they would have to do so through a third party, and it would be the third party, not the individual, whose name is registered with the prefix. Since it is industry knowledge that Bowker does not assign prefixes to individuals and the fact that there are other authors listed on our website with their ISBN's shown clearly, for anyone to write that Alleviate Publications is owned by a self-publishing author is an obvious attempt at defamation. Public record obviously proves otherwise.
Furthermore, it can also be assumed that this is not only a libel case victimizing Alleviate Publications but it also victimizes Draya Mooney. To demonstrate to those interested in the Alleviate Awards that Alleviate Publications has the resources to publish books at leading retailers, a link to Draya Mooney's upcoming release The Aphrodite Scrolls is noticeably accessible in the contact section of the Alleviate Awards in each region. This link goes to Barnes and Noble where the book is available for pre-order. Barnes and Nobel is one of the largest retail chains in America. Barnes and Noble do not trade titles of self-publishing authors, especially not pre-orders. A publisher has to be a Vendor of Record. http://www.barnesandnoble.com/help/cds2.asp?PID=8148
. I can only assume it is because of this link that Draya Mooney was targeted by the forum. If so, then this is a further injustice as they would have seen the link that shows the title available on Barnes and Noble.
2.) Regarding the post: "charities will only get a few hundred bucks." This is the most obvious libel remark meant to defame, mostly because it falsely assumes future events that haven’t even happened. The post deceptively states very confidently that Alleviate Publications will only issue a few hundred dollars to charities, yet the anthology hasn't even been released. As cited clearly on the website, the anthology will be released in March 2012 with all net profits going to charity. For anyone to automatically assume they know how much will go to charity is obviously a libel act, especially when written in such a negative, defamatory manner.
There are many more sentences within the post that contain libel remarks. The point is, I am only an administrative representative of Alleviate Publications. I am not a lawyer. Our legal team will be able to point out a lot more issues. We have the paperwork to prove that Alleviate Publications is a legitimate company and not a fake company as posts on absolutewrite.com claim. This information is not secret but cited clearly through public record and by the fact that we have established relationships with book distributors, retailers, and are registered with Bowker.
Once I pass this issue on to our legal team, I think our complaint will be even more legitimized given that the administrator of Absolute Write, MacAllister Stone, has been informed of the libel remarks on the Absolute Write site but refused to take the material down. To even further our case, MacAllister Stone represents herself as an editor and writer, a professional of the industry. She is not just a random forum monitor. Therefore, she would know quite well about ISBN prefixes and the type of business relationships necessary to have titles available at leading bookstore chains.
This is not an act against freedom of expression which, as a publisher, we respect, but a call to our legal right not to have slanderous and libel material spread about Alleviate Publications. It is situations like these why the US and other countries have constituted Defamatory, Slander, and Libel Acts. To be honest, we were surprised when MacAllister Stone refused to remove the libel material from absolutewrite.com. It was an honest request on our part and, as administrator of Absolute Write, it is her legal obligation to ensure the law is being adhered to on her forum. It is illegal to publish libel remarks. That's the law. But it is not MacAllister Stone’s name on the domain registrar. She is only listed as the administrator. It is [redacted]'s name listed as the domain registrar.
I think it is to the benefit of both Alleviate Publications and [redacted] that the post is removed from Absolute Write. It is an honest request. We just want the post that contains misleading and libel material about Alleviate Publications to be removed. It's very simple. It can be done very quickly. And it's the law. If not, then please understand, with no disrespect intended, I will have to forward this complaint on to our legal team. It is imperative that we protect the customers, employees, and authors of Alleviate Publications from the type of slander that can hurt a company.