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Old 08-29-2018, 08:27 AM   #16
darryl
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@fjtorres. I agree with your post (#15) with the exception of Parneros behaving as unprofessionally as Riggio. I'm not sure that Parneros actually had any real choice. If he did nothing his career was over. Almost certainly his career is over anyway. And of course he had to include the details he did in his initiating process. Remember also that before commencing proceedings there has certainly been communication between the respective lawyers and perhaps even negotiations. I suspect Parneros may have been left with no other option other than total surrender.

But yes, pass the popcorn. Let's enjoy the show as long as it lasts. Which will probably be as long as B&N lasts.
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Old 08-29-2018, 08:58 AM   #17
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Remember also that before commencing proceedings there has certainly been communication between the respective lawyers and perhaps even negotiations. I suspect Parneros may have been left with no other option other than total surrender.
The NYT article (using my 1 out of 5 free reads) does say how Parneros already defused the situation and basically cleared himself of the sexual harrassmen. It sounded like it may even have happened before he got fired. I am certain it had to be, otherwise why let him talk and smooth things over.

So who knows, maybe no communication was necessary. Just serve them.
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Old 08-29-2018, 08:59 AM   #18
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@fjtorres. I agree with your post (#15) with the exception of Parneros behaving as unprofessionally as Riggio. I'm not sure that Parneros actually had any real choice. If he did nothing his career was over. Almost certainly his career is over anyway. And of course he had to include the details he did in his initiating process. Remember also that before commencing proceedings there has certainly been communication between the respective lawyers and perhaps even negotiations. I suspect Parneros may have been left with no other option other than total surrender.

But yes, pass the popcorn. Let's enjoy the show as long as it lasts. Which will probably be as long as B&N lasts.
I agree that Parneros had no choice but to sue.
And he may very well prevail in court.

But some of the language in his filing is a wee bit emotional and he attributes motivations to Riggio that are going to be hard to back up. Unless Riggio was as stupid as the BPH execs during their conspiracy and left a trail of his moves against Parneros, documenting Riggio's state of mind and motivation is going to be hard. Might make the suit harder to win.

Most wrongful termination suits stick to the easily demonstrable facts: he was fired, B&N refused to pay the contracted terms, and resorted to false(?) claims to justify not paying. That alone makes for a lawsuit.

Claiming Riggio was angry because he was left with no way out of B&N (unless he actually said it to his face) is verging on telepathy.
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Old 08-29-2018, 09:20 AM   #19
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But some of the language in his filing is a wee bit emotional and he attributes motivations to Riggio that are going to be hard to back up.
Without emotional language it will be hard to come up with defamation. There is a reason he sues two fold. Breach of contract first, and defamation second. He may not win both claims, but if breach of contract falls through, the defamation may stand. Chances are good there is a lot more money in the defamation if successful.
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Old 08-29-2018, 09:28 AM   #20
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@Duckie. Unless the matter is an extremely urgent one there will always be correspondence between lawyers, if only a letter of demand. Failing to do so incurs a risk of paying or not getting your costs in most countries. I must admit I'm not that familiar with costs awards in the US. The other party does need to be made aware of the pending action and given the chance to avert it.

@fjtorres. I see where you are coming from. I would assume that the "pleadings" were in fact drafted professionally by his lawyer. You are indeed correct that the particular allegation referred to in your last paragraph is not one that should be made without some reasonable basis, so I would assume that the drafting lawyer is not simply plucking it out of the air and has some evidence to support the allegation. I doubt including it will harm his case and it certainly does help both with proof and damages if it can be proven. In defamation law it may constitute proof of malice. I don't know about the US but once again in Australia that negates certain defences and increases damages, if of course it can be proven.

He would of course be shown the document and approve it before filing, but I don't think he could reasonably be expected to have his lawyer alter it to spare the Defendant. In every day business a certain professional decorum is expected. In litigation like this it is pretty well outright war.

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Old 08-29-2018, 12:30 PM   #21
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Without emotional language it will be hard to come up with defamation. ...
If you've got facts on your side, "emotional language" is not necessary. The only place where emotional language is useful is for swaying public opinion and that should have nothing to do with a court case.

As for swaying public opinion ... when both sides come across as "juvenile," it's not very convincing. It just comes across as vindictive and hyperbolic. I just feel like saying "grow up."
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Old 08-29-2018, 01:40 PM   #22
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The WSJ article says there were multiple "verified" reports of "serious misconduct".

The show is far from over ... unless there is a quick $4 million settlement ... or the admin assistant filed a complaint with the Civil Rights Bureau, SDHR and/or EEOC.
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Old 08-29-2018, 03:47 PM   #23
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A reported case of sexual harassment by the CEO. How could they not fire him?

There is now zero tolerance for this type of alleged behavior.

I'm not a fan of "zero tolerance". That just puts all the power in an accuser's hand.

As one of the articles states, this will probably hinge on wither they did a through investigation or not.
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Old 08-29-2018, 04:13 PM   #24
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If you've got facts on your side, "emotional language" is not necessary. The only place where emotional language is useful is for swaying public opinion and that should have nothing to do with a court case.
You keep forgetting that it is a matter of public record now, deed done no matter the outcome. Check out his law firm. They have enough experience with other high profile cases to know what hurts and doesn't hurt. They would have redrafted it to maximize results for desired outcome. No, it is exactly how they wanted it drafted. Too much lawyer talk in there to have been done by Parneros himself.
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Old 08-29-2018, 04:52 PM   #25
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You keep forgetting that it is a matter of public record now, deed done no matter the outcome. Check out his law firm. They have enough experience with other high profile cases to know what hurts and doesn't hurt. They would have redrafted it to maximize results for desired outcome. No, it is exactly how they wanted it drafted. Too much lawyer talk in there to have been done by Parneros himself.
Kind of hard to "keep forgetting" as I just found out about this case today. As for an established law firm "knowing what they're doing ..." color me unimpressed. I've seen a lot of amateur nonsense coming out of law firms in recent years. An established "shingle" doesn't guarantee that a law firm (or two law firms in this case) are competent or that they've made wise decisions in their court filings or press releases.

At one point in my life I used to think lawyers (in general) knew what they were talking about. It didn't take long for me to figure that not all of them were competent or even very smart. When I was seventeen, I wrote and filed a motion to dismiss a traffic citation brought against my father for a traffic accident (he was not at fault). The case was dismissed. A couple years later I did the same for my brother. In his case it was much worse. The driver in front of him had his left turn light on and, as my brother went to pass him on the right shoulder, he turned right and directly into him. At first the police officer cited my brother for illegal passing, then (when the law showed it was clearly legal to pass on the right shoulder) they changed the charge. Doing research I found that this driver had collected damages for several similar "accidents," and that the same police officer was involved in all of them. At any rate, I wrote and filed a motion and the case was dismissed — I think I was twenty at the time.
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Old 08-29-2018, 06:42 PM   #26
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I don't think this is a case with a "good guy" or an eventual winner.
By the time the mutual character assassination is over both will be painted as poor human beings, either jerks or fools or both. And B&N corporate culture is getting demonized along with them, leaving the company as a place no rational person would want to work or invest in.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D_aQupiaCSA

The likeliest outcome is they'll drag B&N, already on the edge of the abyss, straight into liquidation.

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Old 08-29-2018, 07:47 PM   #27
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@rcrentos: I am unimpressed by your bragging successfully defending two cases for your family. By mentioning your age at the time I have to assume you were officially unqualified as an attorney of law on top of that. Doesn't do a thing for me, sorry.

@fjtorres: Who says it is not the intent in the first place? It caters to the media as a publicity PR stunt very well. You evaluated yourself that he has nothing left to lose. Might as well go out with a bang.
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Old 08-29-2018, 08:16 PM   #28
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@fjtorres: Who says it is not the intent in the first place? It caters to the media as a publicity PR stunt very well. You evaluated yourself that he has nothing left to lose. Might as well go out with a bang.
So you think it's all about vengeance and nothing else?
Drag down B&N as payback?
Could be.

Not exactly the action of a decent person, but...
(shrug)

Like I said, no good guy in the mess.

Pretty bad for the employees but most probably have resumes ready and the economy is on an upswing.
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Old 08-29-2018, 09:44 PM   #29
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If you've got facts on your side, "emotional language" is not necessary. The only place where emotional language is useful is for swaying public opinion and that should have nothing to do with a court case.
If only this was the case. Personally I would prefer a lawyer who lives in the real world. Defamation claims often incorporate fairly emotional language, particularly if malice or aggravated damages are claimed. If Mr Riggio did blaime Parneros for the sale falling through and acted as claimed, the pleading is very relevant as is. And, in the US, I expect at least the defamation part of the trial will be before a jury. So much for "emotional language" not being used. Cases indeed should be decided on their merits in a courtroom. Sadly, this is not always the case. Courts are very sensitive to publicity about cases before the Court, but they cannot control it perfectly.
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Old 08-29-2018, 09:58 PM   #30
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So you think it's all about vengeance and nothing else?
Drag down B&N as payback?
Could be.

Not exactly the action of a decent person, but...
(shrug)

Like I said, no good guy in the mess.

Pretty bad for the employees but most probably have resumes ready and the economy is on an upswing.
Again, it depends. B&N still has the chance to back out and pay up to avoid going for a trial -- winning a trial by litigation before trial is a valuable strategy. A official public apology from both sides afterwards might do it to deflect damage from all innocent bystanders (e.g. everybody @ B&N who is not Riggio or the ex CEO).

If litigation doesn't work, they might have enough for winning. If that doesn't work, revenge as ultimate last resort might do. Having multiple options is good in this case. No matter who wins or loses, when someone's worth is artificially inflated into multiple millions of dollars, the real losers are always the little guys.
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