Industry & Advocacy News
November 16, 2020
The Authors Guild stands with the authors’ demands from the Albert Whitman & Company (“AW&C”) for transparency and immediate rectification of past due royalties.
You may have seen tweets and other posts of AW&C authors recently complaining that they have not been paid their royalties. This is an ongoing problem with the publisher. Over the last few years, the Authors Guild has contacted AW&C on numerous occasions to convey members’ concerns involving delayed royalty payments and the accuracy of accounting reports. In April 2019, we had a phone conference with AW&C’s accounting team and leadership during which we discussed their consistent irregularity in paying authors and addressing the author’s concerns about the accuracy of royalty reporting.
Yet despite having notice of these complaints for years, AW&C continues to neglect its obligations to issue timely and transparent royalty statements and render accurate royalty payments, as is required under its book contracts. The irregularities are not limited to one author or one instance, but multiple authors with multiple complaints. This practice is unfair and should not be tolerated, nor does it befit a publisher like AW&C, which has a storied history in the children’s book publishing world. AW&C authors are among some of the best in the children’s publishing world, and they deserve better.
AW&C must immediately start accounting to and paying all royalties due to the authors on a timely basis, in accordance with the contracts.
AW&C’s CEO John Quattrocchi recently stated in a blog post that the publisher will be “making necessary changes to create more honesty and transparency” in the company and setting deadlines to get the authors paid up. We hope that AW&C fulfils this promise of transparency and takes concrete steps that can restore its lost trust among authors. In the meantime, we are standing by to help authors who seek assistance in getting paid the royalties due them or conducting an audit. We can also help authors seek reversion of their rights. Authors Guild members can contact us here.