It's entirely regrettable, sad and awful that a known scam publisher PublishAmerica has decided to pick on people smaller than them. Apparently, one user at Absolute Write was threatened by them. Apparently, things have gone rather awful.

Now, PA is a scammy publisher. I oppose them for various reasons - they're misrepresenting themselves as a publisher rather than a vanity press, if they're trying to be a publisher they're doing a shoddy job at quality control, and, apparently, they snatch more than fair share of author's rights.

Which brings me to this topic - my own small, feeble attempt at annoying PA. However, I'm full well aware this may not work. After all, I'm far out of their jurisdiction, and I'm not exactly famous enough to be seen on radar...

So - my big beef with PA is that they apparently ask the authors to sign away their copyrights. No real publisher does that these days. The authors are supposed to have the copyrights, the publishers just buy the rights to sell the book. Right? Right? I'm a big fan of Creative Commons, free software, Open Source - I'm aware of all these weird little entanglements these copyright issues create.

So I'm hereby criticising PA for their history of trampling on peoples' rights.

But wait, there's more.

Ages ago, when I was still in school, someone (my parents, my teacher, I can't rememeber) apparently sent a writing of mine to a children's magazine called Kipinä that was published in Russian Soviet Karelia. (I can't remember anything at all about the magazine, except it was in Finnish for some reason and was apparently aimed at Karelians and Finns learning Russian. Or something like that.) Apparently, I won some sort of a prize for my little essay on photography, my big hobby at the time. (I can't really remember anything about the essay, except that I was boundlessly embarrassed by the ending: "...especially if the batteries are okay.")

So, hey, what am I?

Am I an acclaimed writer, a known critic of corporate copyright ownership, and at one point backed by repressive anti-American Communist government? Am I now criticising this All-American Company from the safe haven of a socialist country?

...or am I just a random nobody who's raising a valid point to keep up the discussion?

I hope I just shot myself down. I'm obviously not the best person to criticise this company. =)