The TBS news this morning revealed that Japan’s biggest publisher, Singpoosha, had been swindling authors by fraudulently pretending that books had been published when they had not. According to JNN news, Singpoosha had been taking money from the authors for books to be printed whilst not actually distributing those books or even printing them in the first place.
Singpoosha has recently been in the media as they had been forced to apply for court-protected rehabilitation for 2 billion yen in total liabilities after attempting to compensate for falling book sales by expanding its vanity press business in which writers finance the publishing of their own works.
TBS’s whistleblower, an author that alleges that although he has signed and paid for the publisher’s contract, has been repeatedly turned away when asking to see his book. TBS then went on to interview a former employee of Singpoosha who had allegedly been given guidelines by the company to “fob off” authors that would question whether the books had actually been printed with lines such as “yes, they are printed and are in storage but you are unable to see it” or “you are imagining things wrong.” The source also revealed that the employees of the company do not even read the vanity authors’ books before signing the contract.
If this allegation is found to be true, Singpoosha will lose credibility as Japan’s biggest publisher and considering that about 80 percent to 90 percent of Singpoosha’s books are self-financed works, this damaging report could hit the publisher hard when it most hurts.
Just as food produce scandals were for 2007, could publishing scandals evolve as 2008’s Salem Witch-hunt?
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