Monday, July 11, 2011

THE IRS BITES PUBLISHAMERICA'S CEO WILLEM MEINERS

Reposted from another forum with permission.

"Remember when (redacted name) reported Willem and Alice Meiners for possible tax fraud re HELP, their non profit organization, in 2008?

The IRS determined that they owe the IRS $51,769.40. This is likely his personal tax deduction for the money he donated to HELP. The IRS audit was completed on Nov. 31, 2010 and Alice and Willem didn't pay-up so the IRS filed liens on ALL of their properties and any rights they have to any properties on June 11, 2011

Their house in Gilbert SC is deeply underwater on the mortgage and there is no equity at all in it. They still own a house in Frederick with, at least, some equity.

This is only for one tax year so there may or may not be additional taxes owed for other years. They audit one year at a time.

This is all public information."

8 comments:

Hannah Faye said...

I am so glad. I just received a reply from Publish America after requesting the end of my contract.

Dear (AUTHOR, NAME REMOVED):

As you know, every single thing you say in your messages is simply, plainly false. Do not pretend that there are problems when there are not. Do not send us such a message again. If you do not understand something, ask us about it, or ask an attorney about it, and do not accuse us of nonsense that we did not do. If you do, you lose credibility, and we will simply delete your message without even reading it. If you address us politely, we will reply politely. Otherwise we will not reply at all. Read carefully; we will not repeat this same thing again:

>> Publish America does not communicate updated sales reports
>> with customers in a timely manner that meets authors needs

As you know, yes, we do. As you know, we communicate in exactly the way you agreed to in your contract. As you know, and as your attorney will tell you, there has been no problem in communicating at all. Our email trail proves this.

>>Publish America has no place where authors may check or
>>monitor their sales online

As you know, we are not required to do so. That is not a problem.

>>Publish America is secretive and has no clear hierarchy of management

As you know, that is simply false. Your have no complaints, and you have no issues or problems. If you did, they would be handled by the author support team, and by no one else. Your messages will not be read by anyone other than the support team, and they will not be forwarded anywhere else within the company.

>>It takes several weeks, sometimes months to receive books that
>>have been ordered from Publish America

As you know, your emails indicate that you have had no such problem.

>>When contacting Nielsen Bookscan and other monitoring agencies
>>of book sales I was given information that differentiated from what
>>Publish America claimed

No, you were not given any factual information that is different from what we claim.

>>I have seen my book for sale on websites I did not give
>> Publish America permission to post it on

As you know, and as your attorney will tell you, we do not need your permission to sell your book anywhere we choose.

>>I do not feel welcomed when speaking with Publish America
>>customer representatives

No, as you know, this is false. As you know, your emails indicate that you have had no such problem, and your phone calls have not indicated that there has been such a problem.

>> Publish America suffers from an extreme case of un-professionalism and lack of order

As you know, your emails indicate that you have had no such problem. You have no complaint so far, other than the false statements that you made.

>>I have received better opportunities with non-generic
>>publishing companies and plan to take advantage of them

Please consult an attorney prior to sending us such nonsense. Your attorney will tell you that your contract remains fully in effect and legally enforceable. If you are interested in publishing elsewhere, your new agreement will obviously not be made in good faith unless you tell your new publisher that your book remains under contract with another publisher, that your contract remains enforceable, and that republishing it would be a flagrant violation of the contract that you signed.

Thank you,

PublishAmerica Support
support@publishamerica.com

Rev. Sinthyia said...

Hello Hannah. Thanks for your comments. Makes me wonder if Meiners would have somebody from PA send an idiotic letter like this to the IRS on his behalf. "simply, plainly false" oh and lets throw in "libelous and defamatory" for good measure, right Willie?

Their response to their own authors mark them as ametaurs.No other publishers would conduct business like this and no professional publisher would write their authors such arrogant letters.


"I have received better opportunities with non-generic
>>publishing companies and plan to take advantage of them" To which PA responded to Hannah with

"Please consult an attorney prior to sending us such nonsense. Your attorney will tell you that your contract remains fully in effect and legally enforceable. If you are interested in publishing elsewhere, your new agreement will obviously not be made in good faith unless you tell your new publisher that your book remains under contract with another publisher, that your contract remains enforceable, and that republishing it would be a flagrant violation of the contract that you signed"

Now back to reality. I have cosulted a copyright and entertainment attorney re this issue. Publishing your work as it is published by PA verbatim, yes is breach of contract. However, change your title. change your character's names, edit your work properly (something PA won't do) and go elsewhere. Changing your story and title creates a completely new work and that work is not a victim of this publishing company. Do not cite the book under publication with them either as it is not a legit publishing credit anyhow so why bother?

By the way, sending a polite message to PA only causes your letter to be completely ignored. Good for you to actually angered them so much that they took the time to write this.

Thomas said...

Wow! I tell you, wow! Got a few things to say here. Can't say they're very nice!

>> Publish America does not communicate updated sales reports
>> with customers in a timely manner that meets authors needs

"As you know, yes, we do. As you know, we communicate in exactly the way you agreed to in your contract. As you know, and as your attorney will tell you, there has been no problem in communicating at all. Our email trail proves this."

Really? I have never seen a single communication from you since I have published with you. News to me, man.

>>Publish America has no place where authors may check or
>>monitor their sales online

"As you know, we are not required to do so. That is not a problem."

Well, a happy fuck off to you too, PubliSHAMErica!

>>Publish America is secretive and has no clear hierarchy of management

"As you know, that is simply false. Your have no complaints, and you have no issues or problems. If you did, they would be handled by the author support team, and by no one else. Your messages will not be read by anyone other than the support team, and they will not be forwarded anywhere else within the company."

Well, if this is true, why don't you enlighten us? If the support team were only handling this, then who are you, you daffy dope? It's easy to tell someone he or she is wrong, but why the hell don't you put up?

>>It takes several weeks, sometimes months to receive books that
>>have been ordered from Publish America

"As you know, your emails indicate that you have had no such problem."

In other words, she didn't have that problem because you say so? Tell me, what's it like being the scum of the Earth?

>>When contacting Nielsen Bookscan and other monitoring agencies
>>of book sales I was given information that differentiated from what
>>Publish America claimed

"No, you were not given any factual information that is different from what we claim."

Prove it, liar!

To be continued...

Thomas said...

>>I have seen my book for sale on websites I did not give
>> Publish America permission to post it on

"As you know, and as your attorney will tell you, we do not need your permission to sell your book anywhere we choose."

Okay, PA is right about this one, but that doesn't change the fact that this letter is the most unprofessional piece of trash I've ever seen.

>>I do not feel welcomed when speaking with Publish America
>>customer representatives

"No, as you know, this is false. As you know, your emails indicate that you have had no such problem, and your phone calls have not indicated that there has been such a problem."

Wow! Can you read your own writing, or are you actually that stupid?

>> Publish America suffers from an extreme case of un-professionalism and lack of order

"As you know, your emails indicate that you have had no such problem. You have no complaint so far, other than the false statements that you made."

Umm...the contract makes very specific claims. My contract specifically claims that I am entitled to two author copies. You said that that was false, and NONSENSE. When I showed you the WHOLE contract with provision highlighted, you simply ignored my complaint. That is more than un-professional! That is downright criminal and you fuckers still hold me to my contract.

>>I have received better opportunities with non-generic
>>publishing companies and plan to take advantage of them

"Please consult an attorney prior to sending us such nonsense. Your attorney will tell you that your contract remains fully in effect and legally enforceable. If you are interested in publishing elsewhere, your new agreement will obviously not be made in good faith unless you tell your new publisher that your book remains under contract with another publisher, that your contract remains enforceable, and that republishing it would be a flagrant violation of the contract that you signed."

Oh, no you fuckers don't! Your own contract has a provision in it that if you violate it in any way, I can reclaim my rights to my book. You have completely dishonored it. You failed to send me my author's copies, AND you removed my book from your site, which your contract provided as prohibited. I archived the PA website that said my book didn't exist, so you can't deny it! I know what my attorney said about the matter and you started ignoring my emails. I wonder if that's how you are going to handle Hannah Faye?

I am T. R. Myers, and I dare you to do something about it, assholes!

Shen Han said...

Wow. I just finished reading the PA email and response. And I thought they were rude to me. I like the pat answer: "As you know, your emails indicate that you have had no such problem." Like a broken record...or a memorized script, which is more likely. "If you address us politely, we will reply politely." Yeah, ok, how about the reply to the person who simply asked about royalties, and it was just a normal question. PA told them to shut up and quit whining. That's professional? If I was to "ask an attorney" I wonder just what I would find out. PA knows very few people can afford or will ask an attorney anything. I see in their email, PA not only calls the emailer a liar several times, but they can actually read his/her mind. They're actually telling this person they know what he/she is thinking and how he/she feels.
And as far as they can sell the books whereever and to whomever they want...So there to you, too, PA. I hardly call that a professional answer. And I can sell my own book to whomever I want, too. I found that out by asking someone who knows. I won't divulge that tidbit here just in case PA is watching. But it can be done, and they're stuck with a contract that is idle while the authors are making money finally.
Good Luck to all the authors. We deserve better. And as for the emails to me, I've saved every single one. They want to argue professionalism...I'll be happy to show just how unprofessional they really are in their own words.

Phil said...

Hannah, the phrase "as you know" is used too many times to count in PA's e-mail.

"As you know" can be be used to mean the following:

"A preparatory statement used in a sentence to avoid giving offense. It assures the listener that he or she already knows the fact about to be mentioned and that the speaker is mentioning it merely to acknowledge its truth or to help make a point."

But the "As you know" phrase can also be used to mean:

"A derogatory prepatory statement in a sentence used when telling someone something they should already know, but, in fact the author knows they do not."

Used in almost every sentence there is no doubt that each usage is meant as an insult to you.

There is one group of people who just wear out this phrase... the lawyers.

Anonymous said...

Holy Cow! I stumbled on this blog after recieving a SCATHING email from Publish America this afternoon. I was called a child & childish. The email was similar to this one posted. There were several explanations about how my perception was not accurate. Of course the email isn't signed. The best part was the title of my email that had my name and "WANTS MORE FREE STUFF" as the title. Who are these people running this company? - The tone and verbal abuse from them is unbelievable.

Hannah Faye said...

@Rev. Sinthyia...thanks for the advice:"Now back to reality..."
thanks a lot. That is truly valuable information and I will
definitely take heed to it. But man, I think they treated you worse than they treated me. I can't believe it...that is just downright dirty.

@Thomas...you go! We are equally just as angry. Man I wish we all could file some kind of joint
lawsuit, bring up all of our evidence and be recompensed for this.

@Phil...wow! I never knew that one. That one is a new one to me...well, after that all I can (sarcastically) say is: "As they (Publish America) know, I will be continuing to self-publish my own books, and as they know, I may
finally get the exposure and financial compensation we, as writers all deserve!"