Hello everyone, today I’m in a celebratory mood as I finally received a public apology for the misprint trouble I had with a publisher and I wanted to share the joy with everyone 😀 ! For those that don’t know what happened you can read more details in this post (opens in a new tab) but I’ll give an explanation here.
Before I do that though I will say that in telling you what happened I can’t help but reveal the name of my old blog. It shouldn’t be a big deal (it doesn’t feel like it to me) but it might seem like a big deal to one or two individuals who are following this blog…You see I’m terrible at keeping up with who’s following my blog and I only just properly checked my blog followers today and noticed that two or three names followed my old blog and now this one without knowing it’s me 😮 So I’m sorry if anyone feels weird that I didn’t tell you – I’m just really bad at noticing who my new followers are (plus I’m terrible remembering everyone’s screen names 😮 😦 !)
An apology worth fighting for…
Anyway let’s get to it. This last month I battled to get an apology after a publisher printed my review in their catalogue while crediting another website!
A long while ago the publisher Austin Macauley approached me for a review of their book ‘The Belt Boy’. This book blew me away and I gave it a well deserved 5 star rating despite not being my usual taste in books (it’s a sports autobiography). However the review was a success, gaining masses of views, especially when it was reprinted by two blogs which had asked permission first and linked back to my site Happymeerkatreviews.
That was last year, but this year, in early 2017, I was approached by the publisher of the book. They loved my review so much that they asked to print it in their catalogue which was going to be distributed at the London Book Fair in March. Of course I jumped at the chance and agreed (think of the exposure!) but only on the condition that it was clear that the review had come from my blog with a web address attached.
They agreed but March came and went and I assumed, having not heard from them (they promised to send me a copy of the catalogue if it appeared in there) that my review wasn’t used. No problem I thought, but last month I decided to casually browse their online catalogue (available as a pdf download) and found my review there, word for word – it was definitely my review, but at the bottom it said: Originally review from the42.ie
Now the website mentioned is a very popular (given how many followers there are) sports website in Ireland. I didn’t blame them and I’ve never contacted the website in question. But I did contact the publisher. As I’m sure you can all appreciate, I was very upset and wrote stating so, and questioned whether I should even review for them anymore.
They did apologise in the email, but I wanted more than a personal apology. I wanted a public apology. Plenty of people would have picked up their catalogue at the London Book Fair and might have wanted to find the writer of that review, so I wanted the mistake acknowledged publicly. However the publisher wasn’t keen, not at first. You can read more about the struggle I had in my previous blog post Is Sorry Really the Hardest Word? Does a Blogger Deserve an Apology?
I don’t want to go into details of what happened next, but a lot more conversation continued until finally the publisher agreed to give the apology! They apologised on both Twitter and Facebook last week and although it took longer than I thought it would, they’ve finally admitted their mistake. They’ve also amended the online catalogue so it now shows the right blog and address:
Why was it important to get an apology?
Apart from the fact that it is a violation of copyright law to post something without giving credit to the creator of the work (if those are the conditions of the permission given), I also didn’t want to be seen as plagiarising another website. You see, this other sports website has far more followers than Happymeerkatreviews and if people believed the original review came from there, they might have thought that I had copied the review onto my site – not a good thing at all! So it was important for the mistake to be clearly acknowledged.
Now, if I’m honest I could still be picky about how long it took them to apologise or about how some email conversations went, but I’d rather focus on the future. Should this mistake have happened in the first place? No. Should they have apologised earlier? Yes. But the problem’s been fixed as much as it can and I feel it’s more important to move forward and feel positive than focus on the negative details of what happened (not the way I used to think when I run Happymeerkatreviews – improvement no? 😀 ). Besides, there’s always the option of ranting one day if things turn sour, lol 😛
One message has come out of all of this for me though and it is this:
If you believe something is worth fighting for. Fight for it. – MyPeacockBooks
I’m sure that quote’s been used a hundred times by a hundred different people, but I’m saying it today and I stand by it!
So, there it is! An apology on both Twitter and Facebook (shown below) and now everyone knows what blog I used to run too 😮 I’m thinking of writing up a blog post about why I quit my old blog, a bit of insight into the pitfalls of blogging and what to do if you feel trapped/fed up (no you don’t have to start again like I did! 😛 ) So watch out of for that. Plus I have an amazon related blog post that’s in the middle of being written – something to look forward to as well as more book reviews and stuff including a new book haul!! 🙂
Here are the apologies:
Let me know what you think about what happened, I’d love to hear all opinions so let’s talk. If you’re an old follower of Happymeerkatreviews, I’d love to hear from you too. How do you like the new site, and my new attitude? 🙂
I want to thank you again for everyone who follows this blog and a special thank you for all the support I’ve had through this publisher issue. Your support means a lot to me and I hope you continue to enjoy reading My Peacock Books. Phoenix says thank you too…
Let’s chat! I’m also online in in these places:
NOTE: I’ll be updating the book reviews section of this site (bit behind in doing so) plus my Google, Goodreads and Pinterest accounts today and tomorrow – just in case it looks…er…messy later 🙂