Thanks to all of you who came by and said hello to Caroline Clemmons and Kathy Ivan.
An Internet Imbroglio:
The Christmas season apparently set new records for online shopping and created a heck of a bottleneck at UPS and FedEx. It also brought us the largest credit card theft in history at Target.
And Internet shopping brought us this: This isn’t a new story, but there was a new blurb about it a few days ago on the news. A lady bought and paid for items on an Internet site, but never received them. When she tried to contact the site, she was unable to have a conversation with a human and got no response from the site. Angry and frustrated, she went online somewhere and posted negative comments about the site.
A few months later, she received an email informing her she had been fined $3,500 for making inappropriate comments in violation of an agreement she signed at the time of the purchase.
She refused to pay the fine, so the site turned her over to a collection agency that harassed her unmercifully. So now she’s suing the site for exactly how much I don’t know, but I’m interested in knowing if she wins.
She never did get what she ordered.
I read somewhere a long time ago that if someone posted on a social media site like Facebook or Twitter negative comments about a company’s product, the company could sue. Don’t know if that’s true, but if you had a bad experience with Internet shopping and feel distraught enough to say something about it, where else should you say it but online? If someone really rips you off and you can’t find a human, what do you do? Is her case going to set a precedent that a customer cannot make a negative comment about a product without fearing reprisal or lawsuit?
As I listened to this story, the hundreds, even thousands, of the negative comments that get posted on Amazon or Barnes & Noble or other book selling sites about books flew into my mind. It’s really the same thing, isn’t it? The books, even e-books, are a retail product bought from a retail site. ….. When I think about all of the tacky and even mean things that have been said online about my books over the years, I have to wonder if I can sue somebody. :-\
The Internet has really set us to navigating uncharted waters and there’s much more to come.
I’m up to Chapter 17 in THE CATTLEMAN. I had intended to release this book in June, but about a hundred things interfered. Now I’m just hoping to release it before June of 2014.
I’ve posted two 3-book bundles on Amazon. THE CALLISTER BOOKS, which includes THE LOVE OF A COWBOY, THE LOVE OF A STRANGER and THE LOVE OF A LAWMAN; and THE WEST TEXAS SERIES, which includes SWEET WATER, SALVATION, TEXAS and SWEET RETURN. All of these are contemporary romances set in West Texas.