Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Then There's Named Plaintiff Paula McDonald's Slight ... Problem With the Truth

On August 23 I received an email from named plaintiff Paula McDonald. We didn’t use it until my declaration of last week. First we wanted to make sure her lawyers wouldn’t claim that it was sent inadvertently. Later we told them that we intended to use it, but invited them first to make a claim that it was attorney-client privileged. They never responded.

Now McDonald, under penalty of perjury in a declaration in support of the approval papers, makes the strikingly and willfully false assertion that her email got to me because of an accidental “reply to all” in response to my email to her the previous day.

Below are the texts of the August 22-23 emails. The one from me to McDonald -- the first I had ever sent her -- was to McDonald alone. It was not to a list. The one from McDonald to me could not possibly have been a spontaneous “reply to all.”


Date: Mon, 22 Aug 2005 17:22:02 -0700 (PDT)
From: "Irvin Muchnick"
Subject: FREELANCE RIGHTS: Open Letter to Plaintiff E.L. Doctorow -- 'Please Stop This Terrible Settlement'
To: "Paula McDonald"

OPEN LETTER TO PLAINTIFF E.L. DOCTOROW -- 'Please Stop ThisTerrible Settlement'

P.S. to Open Letter to E.L. Doctorow


From: "Paula McDonald"
To: dsherrick@uaw.net, fpeterson@cpacomputerreport.com, gcolby@nwu.org, jfeldman@omsoft.com, jtasini@economicfuturegroup.com, Michael@mcastleman.com, posner@posner.com, ravaughan@rcn.com, rom.web@verizon.net, shermama@bc.edu, writerink@cox.net, "Gary Fergus" , "Irvin Muchnick" , "Jonathan Tasini" , "Diane Rice"
Subject: Amazon and Highbeam confusion
Date: Tue, 23 Aug 2005 14:56:58 -0700

Fellow plaintiffs, attorneys, Jonathan:

Miriam Raftery and I are very confused regarding the Amazon/Highbeam amendment and if or how it affects us. To our knowledge, there has been no information to date, aside from the announcement of the amendment and the wording of the amendment itself, that details which defendants are involved, exactly which plaintiffs are involved, what works have been further infringed, how to find out, and how to file a further claim, if that's necessary. Both of us have spent hours searching Amazon, A9 (Amazon's new information system) and Highbeam with no results other than our published books showing up on Amazon. But A9 has hundreds of web sites under its umbrella so it's almost impossible to search it effectively at this time.

In Irvin Muchnick's open letter to E.L. Doctorow yesterday, he states that "With the recent amendment to the settlement, a good portion of the B’s will convert to A’s."

If that's true, nobody has told us---or the other members of the class---how to pursue specific information regarding this new wrinkle in the case, how to find out if any of our works are moving up a class and what actions we need to take if this is the situation.

Does anyone know what's going on here? The deadline for filing claims is fast approaching and if many class members have to search themselves out and file a new set of claims, we need to know that now.


Paula McDonald


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