David Gaughran calls out another Author Solutions offensive via Writers & Artists
October 7, 2013 | 7:15 pm
David Gaughran, never slow to call foul on the various scams and disguised vanity press exercises perpetrated by publishing services providers in general and Author Solutions in particular, has turned his spotlight on the recently launched Writers’ & Artists’ Self-Publishing Comparison service from Bloomsbury Publishing, launched in conjunction with the staple reference publication of generations of UK authors, the Writers’ & Artists’ Yearbook. Already covered in TeleRead, the service has been criticized extensively on the website of the Alliance of Independent Authors (ALLi) for its close involvement with Author Solutions and its various brands.
“ALLi worked with Bloomsbury for some months on a potential rating system for this new comparison website. We were excited to think that Writers & Artists was producing a website that would be of value to authors and were pleased to be invited to rate the providers and provide a system that would do that,” state ALLi’s own piece on the situation. “The suppliers on this comparison site pay to have the author’s contact details passed onto them as a ‘lead.’ ALLi asked that this would be made clear to authors using this service. As far as we can see, this key information does not appear anywhere on the W&A website. Good services … appear beside some companies who are the worst in the business, without any way for an author to differentiate between those who serve writers well, and those who exploit.”
Gaughran didn’t mince his words on Twitter. “I used to have a lot of respect for
@Writers_Artists and @BloomsburyBooks but the deal with Author Solutions makes me sick,” he tweeted. “What you are doing is even worse than accepting Author Solutions money for a recommendation.”
ALLi highlights its own “Choosing A Self Publishing Service 2013″ guide as a more objective alternative to the new Writers’ & Artists’ service. Of course, there’s a slight element of competitive advertising here, but nonetheless, my money would be on ALLi for a more objective assessment. At least it hasn’t got a class action pending against it.