The truth is, of course, that I know nothing whatever about the rights and wrongs of this case. (If you want to make your own mind up, start with Perdue's legal resources page.) I don't think I had ever heard of Lewis Perdue's book until the reports of the Vanity Fair article started to appear. So if I was dismissive I was simply saying that I am a little weary of reading about these issues.
You know, it's really easy to lose in court when the judge refuses to allow the strongest evidence to be presented. This is precisely what happened when the judge in my case disallowed the sworn statements of the expert witnesses.
There was never a trial, never a hearing on the evidence. The Random House "victory" in court is a sham: all about manipulating the system and nothing about justice.
And don't forget, please, that Random House sued me...not the other way around.
Not only weary but leery too. I am not a lawyer, and have no detailed knowledge of the case law relating to copyright in either the UK or the USA. What I do have is several decades of reading about and hearing about cases in which writers feel that they have been ripped off.
For example: the Ladies Night versus Full Monty case. The authors of the stage play Ladies Night felt that the movie The Full Monty was a rip-off of their play. So did I, having seen both. So did a commenter on the IMDb page for The Full Monty. (The comment, by susanxx, now seems to have been removed, but for the moment you can still find it cached on Google.)
The authors of Ladies Night made several attempts to get compensation, in more than one country. And lost each time. Their Hollywood attorney said, 'I've been doing this for 40 years, and this is as solid a copyright case as I've ever seen.' But they still lost.
Even if you win, you can still lose. At any rate in England. There was the case (it's not on the net and I don't remember all the details so I am going to leave out the names I do remember) of the man who opened a newspaper and found an article about a pop star, by a well known British journalist. He considered that this article made excessive, and uncredited, use of his book on the pop star. So he sued. And won. Was paid £8,000 in damages. Legal costs, which he had to meet: £20,000.
And then there's the case of Baigent et al versus Dan Brown. Those guys ended up nearly if not actually bankrupt.
No, no. It's not smart, in my opinion, to go around complaining that somebody stole your ideas. Even if it's true, it looks like sour grapes and it looks as if you're simply chasing the money. And it certainly isn't smart to take the case to court; not in England, anyway.
The best thing to do is to keep your mouth shut, let others comment if they see fit (like that clear-thinking fan on IMDb), and just get on with your next book or whatever.