The year-old defamation lawsuit that romance publisher Ellora's Cave filed against Dear Author book blog is about to come to a head.
Dierdre Saoirse Moen reported this morning that both Ellora's Cave and Dear Author filed motions for summary judgement on Monday.
To recap, a little under a year ago the romance publisher Ellora's Cave sued Jennifer Gerrish-Lampe, owner of the Dear Author book blog and the blogger we all know as Jane Litte. Ellora's Cave alleged that Dear Author's reporting on EC's worsening financial state amounted to defamation.
Edit: Here's the post in question.
A year's worth of filings, counter-filings, motions, and status updates (as well as the occasional ruling from the judge followed. You can find the motions, as well as many other filings from this case, inas PDFs. Saoirse Moen organized them in chronological order.
The last two entries in that folder are the motions for summary judgement, one each from the plaintiff and defendant. I have no interest in reading them, but I do want to point out just how one-sided this case has become.
- Ellora's Cave filed two documents and cited fourteen legal cases. Their longest exhibit was 4 pages.
- Dear Author filed 54 documents, and cited 55 legal cases. Their longest exhibit was 296 pages.
As the saying goes, truth is the best defense against charges of defamation. If the hundreds of pages of exhibits filed by Dear Author yesterday doesn't prove the factual accuracy of its news reporting on Ellora's Cave then I'll eat my hat.
The trial date is scheduled for next March. I would be terribly surprised if this case isn't over by then.
Does anyone else wonder why Ellora's Cave allowed this case to continue?
It was pretty obvious from the beginning that the defamation claim was merit-less (making this a SLAPP type of lawsuit), and the sheer amount of evidence handed over yesterday bears that out.
The smart move would have been to drop the case once Gerrish-Lampe made it clear that she had the resources, the expert help (in the form of Marc Randazza) and the willingness to see this through to the end.
Then again, the truly smart move would have been to never file the suit in the first place, and thus avoid the airing of EC's dirty laundry.
It's times like this that I tend to agree with Courtney Milan's conclusion that Tina Engler, the owner of Ellora's Cave, is economically irrational (this would also explain why EC went down the tubes at a time when the romance genre is booming).
image by Joe Gratz