Quote Originally Posted by James D. Macdonald
A couple of comments.

First, people who want to read the full text of a typical PublishAmerica contract can see it here: http://www.cs.du.edu/~aburt/StingContract.pdf
I'm an editor at a real publishing house. I work with publishing contracts all the time. Here's my basic take on the PA contract:
1. It's not a good contract. It gives little or no protection to the author. It doesn't clarify likely areas of misunderstanding between the author and publisher. It doesn't provide workable means for constructively settling disputes and misunderstandings. It chiefly focuses on exempting the publisher from any or all obligations to the author.

2. Contrary to what PA says, it is not a standard publishing contract. It's nothing like any standard publishing contract I've ever seen. Claiming that it is (which they do, constantly) is one of PA's more blatant and shameless frauds.

3. The contract's errors, omissions, and other blemishes aren't innocent. PA wasn't just being ignorant and/or incompetent when it drew it up. Their contract is deliberately deceptive. For instance, it's full of promises and descriptions that read one way before you understand PA's nature, and read another way after you've figured out that PA is just an exceptionally slick vanity publisher. Those do occur in nature, but not one after another after another.

5. And then there's Clause 24, which is a masterpiece of fraudulent construction. Victoria's description hardly does it justice.
There is no good reason for anyone, ever, to sign with PA.