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Old 05-04-2013, 10:57 AM   #1
kennyc
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Harper Lee battling in court for copyright

I'm intentionally avoiding this forum, but this is important:

Quote:
Author Harper Lee sues for To Kill a Mockingbird rights
WASHINGTON - NOVEMBER 05: Pulitzer Prize winner and "To Kill A Mockingbird" author Harper Lee smiles before receiving the 2007 Presidential Medal of F...

Chip Somodevilla / Getty Images file

Pulitzer Prize winner and "To Kill A Mockingbird" author Harper Lee smiles before receiving the 2007 Presidential Medal of Freedom.

The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of "To Kill A Mockingbird," Harper Lee, on Friday sued her literary agent, claiming he tricked her into assigning the copyright on her book to him.

The lawsuit was filed in federal court in Manhattan against Samuel Pinkus, the son-in-law of Lee's long-time agent, Eugene Winick, who had represented her for more than 40 years. When Winick became ill in 2002, Pinkus diverted several of Winick's clients to his own company, the lawsuit said.

According to the lawsuit, Pinkus in 2007 "engaged in a scheme to dupe" the then 80-year-old Lee into assigning her "To Kill a Mockingbird" copyright without any payment.
....
http://www.nbcnews.com/business/auth...ghts-6C9774148

Last edited by kennyc; 05-04-2013 at 11:02 AM.
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Old 05-04-2013, 12:16 PM   #2
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Why is it important? Especially, for someone intentionally avoiding this forum? I can live without that book and since it's the only one she had published in her life, let her do what she wants.
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Old 05-04-2013, 12:29 PM   #3
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Patrickt, I think the issue is that she's not being allowed to do as *she* wants, because someone allegedly stole the rights from her. it's important for several reasons: because it's an important book, because she famously has refused to allow an ebook version be created, because it casts more light on the agenting and publishing worlds, which is part of the charter of this forum.

And shouldn't this really be in News and not general discussion?
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Old 05-04-2013, 12:35 PM   #4
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Thanks Becca. I put it here because it was not specifically ebook related. Mods as always are free to move, delete, etc...

Last edited by kennyc; 05-04-2013 at 12:37 PM.
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Old 05-04-2013, 12:36 PM   #5
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I think Beccaprice is right about it belonging in News. As for being important, if it can happen to Harper Lee it can happen to any author.
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Old 05-04-2013, 12:51 PM   #6
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BTY there is an excellent bio of Harper Lee here as part of the American Masters Video Series on PBS:

http://video.pbs.org/video/2194593065/
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Old 05-04-2013, 01:50 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeccaPrice View Post
because she famously has refused to allow an ebook version be created
Why did she refuse to that?
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Old 05-04-2013, 02:20 PM   #8
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This is one of these topics that can go in NEWS or it can stay here in GENERAL DISCUSSIONS.

With that out of the way, it is the OP's choice where he wishes to place it - or leave it.


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Old 05-04-2013, 02:23 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gazella View Post
Why did she refuse to that?
The only thing I could find out for sure was here:

Quote:
She says, "some things should happen on soft pages, not cold metal."
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Old 05-04-2013, 02:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kennyc View Post
I put it here because it was not specifically ebook related.
This part of the article is what immediately caught my eye:

Quote:
The lawsuit also alleged Pinkus failed to respond to offers by publisher HarperCollins to discuss licensing e-book rights...
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Old 05-04-2013, 03:32 PM   #11
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Love that book, love Harper Lee, and just in general can't stand slime who try to do shady things, especially to older people.

GROWL.

Quote:
Originally Posted by patrickt View Post
Why is it important? Especially, for someone intentionally avoiding this forum? I can live without that book and since it's the only one she had published in her life, let her do what she wants.
Hooo-kay then....

I would say here's some money, buy a clue, but that would be rude.
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Old 05-04-2013, 03:59 PM   #12
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'To Kill a Mockingbird' author Lee Sues her agent over coyright

Interesting. Good to see her agent didn't get away with it.

http://in.reuters.com/article/2013/0...94210Z20130503
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Old 05-04-2013, 04:02 PM   #13
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It's already being discussed here.
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Old 05-04-2013, 04:32 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. Drib View Post
This is one of these topics that can go in NEWS or it can stay here in GENERAL DISCUSSIONS.

With that out of the way, it is the OP's choice where he wishes to place it - or leave it.


Don
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Touche. I was just agreeing with Beccaprice that it seemed more like news than general as it involves a court battle. Though it does point out the need to be careful what you sign if you have a book being published. It's always a good idea to read the fine print.
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Old 05-04-2013, 06:07 PM   #15
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I'd say this news is discussion-worthy ( )because it highlights that ebook mainstreaming isn't just squeezing publishers but also agents. And that just as some publishers are reacting to the stress generated by the tech disruption by dipping into the swamp waters of predatory publishing (Hydra and other "fleece the unwary" ventures from traditional publishers), so are some agents reacting by setting themselves up as publishers in all but name or, as in this case, abandoning all pretense to ethics.

I also find interesting (and odd) that HarperCollins tried to license ebook rights instead of pretending their contract already gave them those rights.

It sounds like somebody at HC tried to bypass the agent to convince Lee to allow an ebook edition and that cued her that she wasn't being consulted and this got her comparing notes with the publisher.

There's a (sordid?) story behind this...
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