Statements appearing in these forums represent the opinions of the authors
of each post, not the opinion of WritersWeekly.com and/or BookLocker.com.
It is currently November 25th, 2014, 5:53 pm

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 20 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
PostPosted: January 12th, 2007, 3:51 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
UPDATE: The publisher has now threatened to sue the writer for providing us with copies of emails he sent to her. At her request, I have removed his emails from this forum.

Please also read our readers' comments below as well as comments from others who have worked with (or attempted to work with) Seth Semilof.

LAWSUITS FILED AGAINST HAUTE LIVING:

go here:
http://www.miami-dadeclerk.com/public-records

Click: Standard Record Search

and search for
Haute Living

ANOTHER UPDATE:
On 1/19/07, Seth Semilof sent an email to WritersWeekly demanding we remove all his emails from this forum, including the ones he sent directly to us.

Seth Semilof adamantly denies:

1. Owing the writer below money

2. That he did anything wrong when dealing with the other writer, SC (see email posted from SC on 1/17/07 below). However, Seth Semilof did acknowledge the emails exchanged and also states he did "not want to meet" the writer when he was in New York.

3. That he is in any financial hardship. He claims "most" of the people who are owed money "committed fraud" or "did not do there end of the job." (sic)

WritersWeekly asked by email, "Do you deny that you were sued by one or more of your
suppliers and that you failed to show up in court? Our source claims otherwise."

His response was to ignore that question and to once again demand we remove his emails from this forum. This afternoon, one of our readers sent us this link, which concerns Haute Living being sued for "contract and indebtedness."

http://www.miami-dadeclerk.com/civil/do ... HAAAinAAAY

Seth Semilof says he does not care if he responds to these "lies" because he already has 10-12 "great writers." We gave him several opportunities to tell his side of the story through written statements and he claims he wants all his emails removed from this forum and does care to "respond to these lies."

He has repeated threatened to sue WritersWeekly and everyone else involved here for "slander."

FINAL NOTE:
The last email we received from Seth Semilof says he knows he's on top of his game when people waste hours complaining about him. He then said he takes all this as "flattery" and says this is the price he has to pay for success.

SEE 1/26/07 POST BELOW. THERE APPEAR TO BE FOUR MORE ALLEGED VICTIMS!

~~~~~~~~~~

SUMMARY

Basically, the writer wrote and submitted stories to publisher. Publisher published
the stories. Publisher complained to WritersWeekly that the stories were turned in
late, which cost them time/money. Publisher, however, continued to assign stories
to writer. Publisher also claims one story, an advertorial for which
the publisher was to be paid by the advertiser, was turned in late and also
contained an error. (The writer claims it is a layout error, not a writing error.)
Publisher implied the article was turned in too late to edit and that
the error cost him the $10K. He doesn't state specifically if the $10K was not paid for
that one article or if it is estimate losses because the advertiser didn't want to
work with them again. WritersWeekly's opinion on this part of the debate is that it's
the publisher's/editor's responsibility to edit articles. Again, publisher continued to
assign stories to writer.

The writer's opinion is that her articles were published and the publisher continued
to assign stories. Therefore, she is due the fees. Writer claims publisher told her payment was forthcoming. Publisher denies this. However, one would have to wonder why someone would continue to assign articles to a writer he had no intention of paying. The writer's opinions are published in detail below, too.

PLEASE READ ALL THE INFORMATION BELOW AND MAKE YOUR OWN JUDGMENT ON THIS COMPLAINT. If you'd like us to publish your opinion, please send your comments to angela - at - writersweekly.com.

SEE OUR READERS COMMENTS POSTED UNDER THE COMPLAINT.

From: Angela Hoy
To: ssemilof@hauteliving.com, newyork@hauteliving.com, florida@hauteliving.com, kamal@hauteliving.com, soniatita@hauteliving.com
Subject: COMPLAINT about Haute Living
Date sent: Thu, 07 Dec 2006 14:55:00 -0500

December 7, 2006

Haute Living Magazine / HauteLiving.com
Seth Semilof - ssemilof@hauteliving.com, newyork@hauteliving.com,
florida@hauteliving.com
Kamal Hotchandani, Publisher - kamal@hauteliving.com
Sonia Tita Puopolo, Communications Director - soniatita@hauteliving.com
201 Alhambra Circle, #501 / 1101 Brickell Ave., Suite 1701 / 104 Greene
Street, 1st Floor
Coral Gables, FL 33134 / Miami, FL 33131 / New York, NY 10012
P(305)373-0354 / P(646)415-8850

WritersWeekly.com has received a complaint about:
Haute Living Magazine / HauteLiving.com / www.hauteblog.com /
www.hauteportfolio.com

WritersWeekly.com is a publication that publishes information for and
about freelance writers. The publication is the largest-circulation
freelance writing ezine in the world.

As part of that information, WritersWeekly.com publishes a Warnings
section on its website and in its newsletter. This warning section
contains reports about publications that are unprofessional in dealing
with writers, have refused to pay writers money owed to them, who have
not abided by their contracts, or who have unfair contract terms. These
reports are used by WritersWeekly.com's subscribers to decide which
publications they should and should not work with.

Your firm has been submitted to us for inclusion in the
WritersWeekly.com Whispers and Warnings section.

Step one of our investigation of this report is to gather all relevant
correspondence between your publication and the person submitting the
complaint so that we can piece together that person's side of the story.
Step one of our investigation has been completed.

[SC] (name not published here, but was provided to the
publisher) alleges you owe her $2500.00, that you lied
about mailing her check, and that you're now ignoring her
correspondence. See complete allegation under my signature.

-----------------
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT
-----------------

The second step in our investigation is to send this communication to
your firm to get its side of the story. If you have evidence disputing
these allegations, or would like to make your own statement about these
allegations for publication in our report, please email
angela - at - writersweekly.com within two business days.

***All correspondence for our investigations must be in writing and is
subject to publication.***

If you do owe this person money, we strongly suggest you read
this article before responding:
http://www.writersweekly.com/the_latest ... 32006.html

Our report on your firm is scheduled for inclusion in our publication
next Wednesday.

If there is no response to these allegations, WritersWeekly.com will
still publish this complaint, but our readers will not be able to read
your side of the story.

We appreciate your prompt response in this matter.

Angela Hoy
Publisher
WritersWeekly.com

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
THE COMPLAINT
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

From: [SC]
To: Angela Hoy
Subject: Publisher not paying
Date sent: Wed, 06 Dec 2006 12:50:15 -0500

Hi, Angela;

I'm sorry to report that I am the victim of a nonpaying
publisher. Seth Semilof of Haute Living magazine commissioned several
pieces from me for the September/October issue and later for the
November issue. All of these pieces were published both in the print
magazine and in the magazine's digital version, www.hauteliving.com.

After repeated phone calls and emails over the course of the past two
months, there's been the promise of a check, but no check.

I'll reproduce my last email to him for you, below, so you can see
exactly what the situation is. I sent this on December 2 and have
repeatedly left voice messages since, to no avail.

Best regards,
[SC]


[SC] wrote:
Dear Seth;

As you know, my invoice for the September/October issue of Haute
Living is now 12 weeks past due, and my invoice for the November issue
is now 7 weeks past due.

When I spoke to you on November 13, you indicated that a check would
go out on November 15 for the Sep/Oct issue, and that a second check
would be issued the following week for the Nov issue. When we spoke
again on November 22, you assured me that a check had been mailed on
Friday, November 17.

Two weeks after our last conversation, I have not received a check for
either issue. Please remit the full amount owed for both issues--$1750
for September/October and $750 for November, for a total of $2500;
please see the attached invoices for specifics--immediately to the
following address:

(address removed for publication)

[SC]


PUBLISHER RESPONDS

THE PUBLISHER EMAILED WRITERSWEEKLY AND DENIED THE ALLEGATIONS BUT ASKED WRITERSWEEKLY TO REMOVE HIS EMAILS FROM THIS FORUM.


WRITER SENDS IN MORE INFORMATION

From: [SC]
To: Angela Hoy
Subject: Re: COMPLAINT about Haute Living
Date sent: Thu, 7 Dec 2006 22:16:12 -0800 (PST)
Copies to: ssemilof@hauteliving.com


Dear Angela;

Our story so far:

Seth left me a message detailing the reasons he wasn't
going to pay me:
1) I handed a piece in late, it had a typo, and since
it was an advertorial his advertiser didn't pay him;
thus, I don't deserve to be paid -- not just for the
piece in question, but for any of the pieces
2) I handed some or all of the other pieces in past
deadline, therefore I don't deserve to be paid for
them
3) I left him an angry message when I realized I'd
been lied to about the check arriving; people who
leave angry messages don't deserve to be paid
4) I called his assistant repeatedly in an effort to
contact him, and advised her of exactly why I was
doing so. This makes me "unprofessional" and
therefore, again, unworthy of payment.

He also threatened to warn other publishers against
working with me, told me that I was getting a
reputation around town, and told me that if I wanted
to keep writing I should accept the situation.

I left him a return message pointing out that:
1) He had every right to refuse to publish any piece
that didn't meet his specifications, that was handed
in late, that had typos, etc., but that by publishing
the pieces he implicitly stated that I'd satisfied my
end of the contract
2) During a conversation three weeks ago, HE TOLD ME
HE HAD SENT ME A CHECK.
3) During a conversation about a month ago, he told me
that the subject of one of my profiles was very happy
with it, and that this made him happy with me. He
assured me that everything was OK and that I was a
valued writer, one that he wanted to keep happy, and
that my check would be arriving soon. It was only
because he'd been busy and out of town that he'd
neglected to pay me.

So that's basically it. I would even be willing to
work out a settlement for somewhat less than I'm owed
at this point, just to have this behind me and get on
with enjoying the holidays.

Kind regards,
[SC]

PUBLISHER SENDS MORE INFORMATION

THE PUBLISHER EMAILED WRITERSWEEKLY AND DENIED THE ALLEGATIONS BUT LATER ASKED WRITERSWEEKLY TO REMOVE HIS EMAILS FROM THIS FORUM.

-----Original Message-----
From: [SC]
Sent: Monday, October 09, 2006 7:31 AM
To: Seth Semilof
Subject: Re: Sapir

Seth;

I need to double-check a few points, so the expected ETA right now is
closer to 10am than 8am.

Best,
[SC]

Seth Semilof wrote:
> [SC]
>
THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.
>
> Best,
> Seth Semilof


> -----Original Message-----
> From: [SC]
> Sent: Saturday, October 07, 2006 11:21 AM
> To: Seth Semilof
> Subject: Re: Sapir
>
> Hi, Seth;
>
> I mistook the deadline for Monday, but I see it was actually yesterday.
> I will have it ready first thing on Monday. Sorry for the
inconvenience.
>
> Best,
> SC
>
> Seth Semilof wrote:
>
>> [SC]
THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.
>

>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: [SC]
>> Sent: Tuesday, October 03, 2006 9:12 PM
>> To: Seth Semilof
>> Subject: Re: Sapir
>>
>> Thanks for the clarification; I never got the layout.
>>
>> Best,
>> SC
>>
>> Seth Semilof wrote:
>>
THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.


>>> -----Original Message-----
>>> From: [SC]
>>> Sent: Monday, October 02, 2006 2:12 PM
>>> To: ssemilof@hauteliving.com
>>> Subject: Sapir
>>>
>>> Hi, Seth;
>>>
>>> Alan asked me about including Zina in the article, but I'm pretty
sure the Sapir is a power players pieces, i.e, Q&A...or no? Also, when would
you like it? Thanks
>>>
>>> SC

PUBLISHER SENDS ANOTHER EMAIL

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.


-----Original Message-----
From: [SC]
Sent: Monday, October 09, 2006 7:07 PM
To: Seth Semilof
Subject: Sapir revised

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> *From:* Seth Semilof [mailto:ssemilof@hauteliving.com]
> *Sent:* Monday, October 09, 2006 12:10 PM
> *Subject:*
>
THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.


~~~~~

WRITER RESPONDS

From: [SC]
To: Seth Semilof <ssemilof@hauteliving.com>, Angela Hoy
Subject: RE: COMPLAINT about Haute Living
Date sent: Fri, 8 Dec 2006 06:27:39 -0800 (PST)

He's right about my handing stories in late; that's
not in dispute. He's wrong, however, about the typo
being of my making. As I explained to him in an email,
the typo is in the heading and subhead and is a layout
error, not a writing one.

Again, I concede that I have been late on stories.
He's certainly within his rights to refuse to work
with me in the future if that's his preference.

The issue here, however, is that these stories were
published. And it is the right the use the pieces in
his magazine that he's paying for.

At the moment, he is infringing on a copyright, using
stories I wrote without paying for the rights to them,
and using them to further a money-making enterprise.

SC

~~~~~

WRITERSWEEKLY RESPONDS TO PUBLISHER

From: Angela Hoy
To: "Seth Semilof" <ssemilof@hauteliving.com>
Subject: RE: COMPLAINT about Haute Living
Date sent: Fri, 08 Dec 2006 11:11:41 -0500
Copies to: [SC]

Hi Seth,

Can you send me a copy of your contract that states your publication
does not pay writers for late stories? While I understand she may
have made errors, it is still the editor's responsibility to edit the
piece.

And, her articles were published, and you continued to ask her to
write for you (5 articles total).

Why, after all this, did you continue to tell her the check was
forthcoming?

When can [SC] expect payment of the $2500 you
owe her?

Angela Hoy
WritersWeekly.com

~~~~~


PUBLISHER RESPONDED AND CLAIMS HE'S WAITING TO BE PAID BY CLIENTS. HE
DOES NOT STATE HE DOES NOT INTEND TO PAY THE WRITER.

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.


WRITERSWEEKLY SENDS QUESTION TO WRITER

--- Angela Hoy <angela@booklocker.com> wrote:

> He's saying he never told you the check was
> forthcoming. Do you
> have emails where he said it?


WRITER RESPONDS

From: [SC]
Subject: Re: (Fwd) RE: COMPLAINT about Haute Living
Date sent: Fri, 8 Dec 2006 10:09:35 -0800 (PST)


Here's a copy of an email that he sent while we were
on the phone discussing payment. He told me that it
was a note to his assistant asking her to cut a check.
His assistant, apparently, was at
contactus@hauteblog.com. Her name is Stephanie. When I
asked her about it later, she said it was the first
she's heard of it. I'm pretty sure the second email
also belongs to Seth. I sent a return email that said
"Thank you, Seth."

So you can see what I'm up against here.

On 11/13/2006 at 5:23 PM

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.


From: [SC]
To: Angela Hoy
Subject: Re: (Fwd) RE: COMPLAINT about Haute Living
Date sent: Fri, 8 Dec 2006 10:20:32 -0800 (PST)

Sadly, he was very careful to never reply to my
emailed invoices, and all our talks about my work were
by phone, so unfortunately, I can't prove it.

I wrote two pieces for the June issue, one of which
was late, and he paid me for both without incident, so
I had every reason to believe that his policy was to
pay upon publication.

I suspect that he's not paying this time only because
he himself hasn't been paid; that would explain why he
put me off for so long.

He never at any point gave me any reason to believe
that he would not pay me; his response to your note
was the first inkling I had of what was going on his
head.


WRITER SENDS MORE CORRESPONDENCE

From: [SC]
Subject: Here's a note where he asks what me fee is
On Fri, 8 Dec 2006 10:22:58 -0800 (PST)

On Sept. 14, 9:03pm

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.



From: [SC]
To: Angela Hoy
Subject: Our agreement, the Minskoff article
Date sent: Fri, 8 Dec 2006 10:28:08 -0800 (PST)


And this one was NOT late

8/4/2006, 11:56am
Seth Semilof emailed writer:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.



-----Original Message-----
From: [SC]
Sent: Friday, August 04, 2006 11:54 AM
To: Seth Semilof
Subject: Re: Harriet Weintraub

Thanks...and lastly, what are the due date and fee?

Best,
SC

Seth Semilof wrote:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.



> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: [SC]
> > Sent: Friday, August 04, 2006 11:43 AM
> > To: Seth Semilof
> > Subject: Re: Harriet Weintraub
> >
> > Thanks. Is it "Power Players", "Design and Decor",
"Feature Well"?
> >
> > SC

> >
> > Seth Semilof wrote:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.


>> >> -----Original Message-----
>> >> From: [SC]
>> >> Sent: Friday, August 04, 2006 11:29 AM
>> >> To: Seth Semilof
>> >> Subject: Harriet Weintraub
>> >>
>> >> Hi, Seth;
>> >>
>> >> What is the name of the exec I'm asking her
about? Thanks.
>> >>
>> >> SC
>> >>

Seth Semilof wrote:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.


>>> >>> -----Original Message-----
>>> >>> From: [SC] Sent: Wednesday,
>>> >>> August 02, 2006 1:03 PM
>>> >>> To: Seth Semilof
>>> >>> Subject: Re: Hey
>>> >>>
>>> >>> Hi, Seth;
>>> >>>
>>> >>> Yes, I'm definitely interested. I'm still in
NY, so only my cell phone(number removed). Thanks!
>>> >>>
>>> >>> [SC]


Seth Semilof wrote:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.


~~~~~

WRITER RESPONDS TO WRITERSWEEKLY'S REQUEST FOR A CONTRACT

From: [SC]
To: Angela Hoy
Subject: Re: (Fwd) RE: COMPLAINT about Haute Living
Date sent: Mon, 11 Dec 2006 06:38:33 -0800 (PST)

Hi, Angela;

There was never a contract, only an emailed
confirmation of the terms. I can forward you emails
where the fee of $.50 per word and a word length is
discussed, but there's no actual contract. I often
work this way, and it hasn't been a problem until now.
Live and learn.

As for the articles, for the Miami September issue I
wrote "Palaces in the Sky" and "Central American and
Caribbean Haute Spots". He also commissioned the
Minskoff profile for the same issue, but decided to
hold it over for the NY October issue, where it was a
better fit. For New York October, I wrote the Minskoff
article and "Sapir Means Empire". I'm out of town for
the weekend, but when I get home tomorrow, I will
forward you every email I have from him.

Thanks for your help, Angela.

Best,
[SC]


MORE EMAIL COPIES PROVIDED BY WRITER

PUBLISHER PRAISING STORY:

On Tue, 2 May 2006 10:06:56 -0400

Seth Semilof emailed writer:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.


PUBLISHER ACKNOWLEDGING PAYMENT AMOUNT

On Fri, 5 May 2006 22:09:11 +0000 GMT

Seth Semilof emailed writer:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.



PUBLISHER ASSIGNS ANOTHER STORY TO WRITER

On Tue, 8 Aug 2006 11:03:24 -0400

Seth Semilof emailed writer:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.



PUBLISHER CONFIRMING ASSIGNMENT

On Tue, 15 Aug 2006 09:58:26 -0400

Seth Semilof emailed writer:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.



MORE CONFIRMATION

On Tue, 8 Aug 2006 14:44:44 -0400

Seth Semilof emailed writer:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.



WRITER ASKING ABOUT DEADLINE

From: [SC]
Sent: Tuesday, August 15, 2006 2:25 PM
To: Seth Semilof
Subject: Penthouses

OK, thanks, Seth. Is this piece also due August 21?

Best,
SC

PUBLISHER OFFERING TWO MORE DAYS

On Tue, 15 Aug 2006 14:25:21 -0400

Seth Semilof emailed writer:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.


PUBLISHER ASSIGNS ANOTHER STORY

On Mon, 28 Aug 2006 16:06:52 -0400

Seth Semilof emailed writer:

[SC]

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.



PUBLISHER CONFIRMS STORY DETAILS

On Wed, 30 Aug 2006 14:00:25 -0400

Seth Semilof emailed writer:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.


WRITER UPDATING PUBLISHER

-----Original Message-----
From: [SC]
Sent: Tuesday, September 05, 2006 2:31 PM
To: Seth Semilof
Subject: Haute Spot: Dominican Republic

The other two TK shortly...

Best,
[SC]


PUBLISHER ASKS FOR ARTICLE

On Tue, 5 Sep 2006 17:07:27 -0400

Seth Semilof emailed writer:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.


WRITER RESPONDS REGARDING WRITING FOR THE NEW MAGAZINE

-----Original Message-----
From: [SC]
Sent: Wednesday, September 20, 2006 3:00 PM
To: Seth Semilof
Subject: Sapir Family

Hi, Seth;

Is this still on, or have you already assigned it? Thanks!

SC

PUBLISHER RESPONDS

On Wed, 20 Sep 2006 15:24:19 -0400

Seth Semilof emailed writer:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.


WRITER RESPONDS

From: [SC]
Sent: Monday, October 09, 2006 10:10 AM
To: Seth Semilof
Subject: Sapir text

Seth;

I did what I could with the photos, but need some help IDing some of
them. Thx.

SC


PUBLISHER RESPONDS

On Mon, 9 Oct 2006 12:05:52 -0400

Seth Semilof emailed writer:

THIS EMAIL HAS BEEN REMOVED AT THE REQUEST OF THE PUBLISHER, SETH SEMILOF.



WRITER SENDS INVOICE

From: [SC]
To: Seth Semilof <ssemilof@hauteliving.com>
Subject: [Fwd: Invoice: Haute Living Sep/Oct 2006]
Date sent: Sun, 15 Oct 2006 02:41:33 -0400


Hi, Seth;

Just checking in to see when you think checks for the Sep issue will go
out. I will invoice for November in a separate email. Thanks! Also,
wanted to confirm my mailing address, which is:

(ADDRESS REMOVED FOR PUBLICATION HERE.)

Best,

[SC]

From: [SC]
To: Seth Semilof <ssemilof@hauteliving.com>
Subject: Invoice: Haute Living Sep/Oct 2006
Date sent: Wed, 06 Sep 2006 23:32:33 -0400


Haute Living
September/October 2006 issue

Invoice Date: September 7, 2006

(ADDRESS REMOVED FOR PUBLICATION HERE.)

Article 1: Edward Minskoff, 101 Warren
Fee: 1000 words at $.50 per word--$500

Article 2: Miami’s Top Penthouses
Fee: 1000 words at $.50 per word--$500

Article 3: Haute Spots—Panama, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic
Fee: 1500 words at $.50 per word--$750

Total Due: $1,750


WRITER SENDS WRITERSWEEKLY TIME-LINE OF ASSIGNMENTS:

From: [SC]
To: angela@booklocker.com
Subject: Re: (Fwd) RE: COMPLAINT about Haute Living
Date sent: Tue, 12 Dec 2006 10:16:24 -0500

Hi, Angela;

Sorry for the volume of emails, but I wanted you to get a sense of the
timeline. The Minskoff piece was originally supposed to run in the
Sep/Oct issue. I handed it in on 8/23. I handed the Penthouses piece in
on 8/29. For the same issue, he assigned the infamous Haute Spots piece
on the Wed before Labor Day, 8/30, (after the "late" Minskoff and
Penthouses pieces were both in), due "Friday or Sat", and I handed it on
Tuesday morning, 9/5, and invoiced on 9/6 for Minskoff, Penthouses and
Haute Spots.

On 9/14, he offered me more work for the November issue. The Minskoff
piece was ultimately published in the November issue along with the
Sapir piece.

Thanks for your help.

Best,
[SC]


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: January 17th, 2007, 3:16 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
SK SAYS PUBLISHER SHOULD PAY

From: SK
To: Angela Hoy
Subject: Re: nonpayment/ Haute Living
Date sent: Wed, 17 Jan 2007 13:42:59 -0500

Hi Angela,

Absolutely... if the publication used the article, it must pay. If the
material were substandard, the website should have reassigned the piece
in-house or to another writer. But the publisher used the article, and
assigned the writer more work. Sounds like the publisher thinks it has
found a good patsy who will write for free. The writer should refuse to
do any more work for Haute Living, and should take steps to demand
payment.

My 2 cents, such as they are...

~SK


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: January 17th, 2007, 3:26 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
KS SAYS PUBLISHER SHOULD PAY

From: KS
To: Angela Hoy
Subject: Haute Living Magazine debate
Date sent: Wed, 17 Jan 2007 09:28:51 -0700

I just got done reading the entire Haute Living Magazine saga, and I
definitely think the publisher should pay the writer - in full, no
settlement. I agree with her that by accepting the articles, continuing
to assign her more, and (most importantly) publishing what she turned in,
he was demonstrating approval and an intent to continue doing business with
her. It seems he does not have the money now, and is trying to convince
her, you, himself, and everyone else that the reason he's not paying her is
because she flubbed up, and not because he's incapable of honoring a
business contract.

I was in a similar situation myself about six months ago. The project
had been pushed past deadline several times, and when time came to pay me,
the publisher tried to use that as an excuse. I pointed out that 1) not all
of the extensions were because of me (he had needed several himself, as he
was providing me with the research on the project), and 2) by continuing to
request and accept my work, he was inherently saying that the delays
were not a problem - at least, not enough of a problem to justify canceling
the project. I ended by informing him that I was going to contact you if he
didn't pay me what he owed me. Thankfully for me, it worked, and I got
paid.

If a publisher publishes a writer's work, he owes her for it - end of
story. If he feels she cost him money, then he needs to pay her what he owes
her and THEN take her to court over the lost business, rather than trying to
settle the matter himself. However, I think the truth is that he
doesn't have the money - and in any case, I highly doubt a court would award him
anything on such petty complaints.

Sincerely,
KS


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: January 18th, 2007, 7:02 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
SR SAYS HE'S DEALT WITH THIS PUBLISHER BEFORE

Sent: Wed, 17 Jan 2007 14:38:04 -0500 (EST)
From: [SC]
To: Angela Hoy

Hi Angela:

As for Seth Semilof; he's a total flake. Last year he placed
help-wanted ads for writers because he wanted to expand his publication to
include Manhattan. I have all kinds of connections with people
appropriate to his 'zine, and past by-lines in major consumer publications
in the fields he wants to cover.

I sent him an introductory letter and samples. He called me and we
talked for two hours about the NYC scene. I asked that he send me sample
issues, he said he would do so; they never arrived. He asked me to pitch
him five article ideas, and said he was coming to the city the next week
and wanted to meet with me on Tuesday. I wrote up the pitches and sent
them to him. I never received a response. The next week came and went
and he didn't contact me, though I sent him two e-mails and left him a
voice-mail message.

Several weeks later I received an e-mail from him, as though in response
to my first answer to his help-wanted ad, asking me to send my
qualifications (though they were explained in detail in my first e-mailing
to him).

Whatever else might be true of him, he didn't handle me respectfully,
much less professionally.

I haven't thought about the matter in some time but it occurs to me he
could have used my pitch ideas without telling me; I haven't checked Haute
Living magazine.

He does have some professional-quality pieces up on his site, as I
recall.

However, the overall impression I have is that he is somewhat
scatterbrained and refuses to correct that quality even though he wastes
the time of highly-qualified professionals with it.

His total lack of productive follow-up, furthermore, gives an appearance
of a suspicion of a hint of shadiness.

He showed you e-mails where he was asking the writer to get things in
"on time" but did he show you their initial agreement? He could have told
her/him one deadline that was not the true deadline and then badgered
her/him for the articles for an earlier date.

The writer erred in carrying on communications about business matters
with him over the telephone. When there is a dispute, everything should
be documented via hard paper or e-mail.

That bit about not having time to proof something before having to send
it to the printer is a crock. How long does it take to scan a few pages
with your eyes, circle the mistakes in red ink and get them changed?
Printers are used to the last elements of a magazine coming in at the last
minute; he could easily have arranged for a ten minute extension of the
printer's workday.

Also, an advertiser who believes that his ads will be reaching a lot of
the right people through a particular magazine is not going to drop the
magazine because of a single typographical error. The advertiser might
blow his stack and the publisher might have to offer him one or two months
free advertising to continue the relationship, but the advertiser will not
completely abandon a solid venue over a typo.

It certainly is not valid for Seth to commission more articles from the
writer after-the-fact, promise her payment, then tell her she doesn't
deserve payment and carry on all this communication with Writers Weekly
about the matter.

He ran the writer's pieces. If he's unhappy with their relationship, he
should pay her already and then not have her do any more work for him.

And he should apologize to me for wasting my time for hours on the
telephone, with me giving him valuable information about the NYC scene and
then not even having the courtesy to contact me about 1) my pitches; 2)
the interview appointment we were supposed to have and 3) if not an
explanation of what happened, then at least a note saying "I realize I
left you hanging and I apologize for it."

That's what I know about that shnook, Angela!

Aren't you glad you asked?

Hugs,

[SR]

UPDATE

The publisher has denied he did anything wrong when dealing with this writer. However, Seth Semilof did acknowledge the emails exchanged and also states he did "not want to meet" the writer when he was in New York.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: January 19th, 2007, 11:53 am 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
TINA SAYS PUBLISHER SHOULD PAY

Yes! Am new to the business of writing but I wonder why there isn't some
type of 'late' clause in the agreement -- ? Publisher could reduce
writer's fee by a certain % based on how late and when/if ever published. But if he
wants to use the work and keeps on assigning -- he should pay. (and writer
should take care of this and not keep on -- get a late clause before accepting
next assignment -- publisher should have an absolute cut-off date too after which
no fee is due, and work is returned to writer.)

As for the error: isn't that why publisher has an editor? Unless it's some type
of content/research error the editor can't possibly be familiar with...then
writer is responsible...and publisher should make that known/clear up
front.

That's my two cents!

Tina
San Bernardino, CA


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: January 19th, 2007, 12:00 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
WritersWeekly has received a confidential email from one of this publisher's suppliers (who is owed money by Haute Living) confirming that the publisher's company is in "financial hardship."

UPDATE:

The publisher adamantly denies he is in any financial hardship. He claims "most" of the people who are owed money "committed fraud" or "did not do there end of the job." (sic)

WritersWeekly asked by email, "Do you deny that you were sued by one or more of your
suppliers and that you failed to show up in court? Our source claims otherwise."

His response was to ignore that question and to once again demand we remove his emails from this forum. This afternoon, one of our readers sent us this link, which concerns Haute Living being sued for "contract and indebtedness."

http://www.miami-dadeclerk.com/civil/do ... HAAAinAAAY


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: January 23rd, 2007, 12:53 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
BIZARRE DEVELOPMENTS

After we emailed Seth Semilof the name of the writer [SR] who complained about being stood up by Seth for a meeting in New York, Seth started an email debate with the writer. He then called the writer and allegedly launched into a screaming tirade. Here is the email sent by [SR] about the phone call:

From: [SR]
To: Angela Hoy
Subject: Mr. Semilof
Date sent: Fri, 19 Jan 2007 17:26:06 -0500 (GMT-05:00)

Dear Angela:

Mr. Semilof just called me in a hysterical tirade over the telephone.

I asked why he was calling.

He said I had told you he should.

I said I specifically said that so he could confirm that my message to you
was from me, and authentic, not invented by you. I said "Consider that
confirmed" and he made no response to that, he kept on screaming at me.

Among other things he screamed was that he had talked with a "major
figure" in New York publishing and that that unnamed person had said "the
guy is a cancer, stay away from him."

Regarding Le Cirque, he told me that I did not even know that Susan
Magrino's PR agency was the contact for the restaurant. I asked if he
wanted me to send him e-mails I have received from four executives at
Susan Magrino's agency. He screamed at me: "It doesn't matter!"

I told Mr. Semilof that any further communication had to be documented in
writing and that I was hanging up.

He screamed at me that he was only calling to tell me that I am "a loser."
As I placed the receiver down I heard Mr. Semilof's hysterical voice
screaming "Loser! Loser! Loser!"

Please, Angela, when you run this message along with the others regarding
this matter, include the following URL:
http://www.yachtchartersmagazine.com/read/160832.htm

It contains my profile of the megayacht Mia Elise, used as a cover story
by International Yacht Vacations magazine, for which I am a regular
writer.

Many thanks,

SR

AND THEN

Oddly enough, on Friday night, two false ads appeared on Craigslist.com. One was for cheap super bowl tickets and listed SR's name and home phone number. The other false ad was for a Playstation 3, and that one listed SC's cell phone number (SC is the first writer who complained above). Both SR and SC then started receiving phone calls.

The fake ads were later removed by the poster, according to Craigslist.com. Incredible coincidence, wouldn't you say?


I received copies of numerous emails being sent from and to Seth and SR, but this is what SR asked me to publish after the dust settled:

From: SR
To: Angela Hoy
Date sent: Sat, 20 Jan 2007 19:52:22 -0500 (EST)

Dear Angela:

Below is another ridiculous message from the whack job Mr. Semilof, one he
did not cc to you but that I want you to see as you are following the
case.

He appears delusional.

I repeatedly stated to him that the reason I related my experiences with
him to you was that he had stood me up for an appointment, not replied to
intellectual property he solicited from me, and then never contacted me
with an explanation or apology.

I saw [SC]'s complaint against him on WritersWeekly and wanted you to
know that he had also played a dirty trick on me.

He now writes "The best part of all this is how I wouldn't give u the time
of day, and how mad u are that u can't write for my mag."

I am not mad that I'm not writing for his magazine. Until I saw [SC]'s
complaint on the site, I hadn't seen or thought about Haute Living
magazine in at least six months. I never said I was mad about not writing
for the publication, and indeed I have made mountain stream water clear
that the center of my complaint against Mr. Semilof was and is his
discourtesy in not calling me to say he had decided he didn't want to meet
or work with me. He wrote this message in response to a previous one I
had sent to you and cc'd to him. In it, I said nothing whatsoever about
being "mad" over not writing for his magazine or anything else for that
matter. I did point out that at the bottom of the accumulation of e-mail
messages was to be found the corrections of typographical errors I had
found on the Haute Living web site and sent to him. I also said that I
had never received a thank you from him for that. Mr. Semilof has
deplorable character and that fact is evidenced in his making up that I am
"mad" over "not being able" to write for his magazine, in response to an
e-mail message in which I complained that he had never thanked me for a
useful service provided.

Then he says: "To waste all this time on complaining on a meeting (which
u were only going to get 10 min of my time) and I wouldn't even give you a
shot."

Again, he appears delusional, and not recognizing the issue. I am not
complaining that I didn't have a meeting with him. My messages make as
clear as can be that I am complaining that having set a time and day for a
meeting with me, and then having decided he would not make the meeting, he
did not communicate that decision to me. He could so easily now steer me
towards not continuing in any complaint against him by writing me
something like "I've thought about it and now recognize that it was
inexcusably rude of me not to contact you to inform you of my decision.
Please accepted my belated apology." Of course, he has of late added to
the offenses for which he owes me an apology, among them, calling my home
number and delivering a hysterical screaming tirade. People who would
consider associating with him, for however brief or long a time, should
know that he is capable of doing that to them. That I have not received
such a short, pacifying note, one that I deserve, and that I have instead
received from him many abusive, antagonistic notes and been the victim of
other harassment from Mr. Semilof speaks volumes about his character. He
is so out to lunch that he will read a statement like that, and then,
instead of writing me the little apology I formulated above, or something
similar, will say that I have "slandered" him. If he doesn't want people
saying that he has bad character then he should try exhibiting good
character.

Next he says: "At least u get to write for the acclaimed yacht charter
international, not boating or showboats, but yacht club international."

He doesn't correctly reproduce the title of the yachting magazine for
which I'm a regular contributor, though it is found in every major marina
in the world. He thinks he is getting a significant dig at me by saying
that I don't write for Boating or Showboats. I should worry and lose my
figure. Beyond that, what does it say about him that he fatuously tries
to belittle my accomplishments by saying that I write for one magazine
rather than another? How is this point relevant to the complaints against
him, and what does it have to do with my displeasure with him over his
having led me on and stood me up without communicating to me his decision
not to work with me? Mr. Semilof is astonishingly petty and megalomaniacal. He thinks he has scored a great zinger with the above remark, and does not even realize how
trite and risible it makes him appear.

He closes his e-mail with: "Your time wasted complaining about me is the
ultimate form of flattery"

If in reporting my experience with Mr. Semilof to you I can 1) assist in
getting [SC]'s complaint resolved and 2) prevent other freelancers from
being victimized by him, then I will not have wasted my time. If Mr.
Semilof takes that as "the ultimate form of flattery," that is one more
example of his being out of touch with reality.

Angela, it could very well be that Mr. Semilof is unimpeachably honest,
fair and considerate with all of the writers he has had work for Haute
Living except for [SC]. But it would be reassuring to discover that such
really is the case by having Mr. Semilof produce for your inspection
canceled return checks to writers for every article he has published in
Haute Living, and also by comparing the contract terms to the actual
payments and conditions of publication.

We already know, don't we, that when Mr. Semilof is asked to document his
claims, he does not produce the relevant documents and instead undertakes
petty diversionary attacks.

I have expressed in several messages to him and to you that I have empathy
for him because I recognize the class of difficulty he is suffering. I
have said that I wish him well, that I hope he will reflect with some
degree of maturity on the importance of being decent to all people one
contacts in the course of doing business, and I have pointed out to him
that he could easily choose to resolve the complaints against him through
honesty and diplomacy instead of exacerbating the case against him through
dishonesty, refusing to produce documents that would prove or disprove his
contentions, and a refusal to admit he was wrong and then to apologize for
it.

What I've gotten from Mr. Semilof in return is fatuous megalomaniacal
abusive arrogance.

If he wants to claim that is untrue, he should produce the e-mail message
in which he gave me the apologies I deserve from him.

When he complained about my complaint against him which
appeared on your site without my name, I subsequently confirmed to him
that I had written the complaint. He did not apologize to you for having
made that false accusation, nor did he apologize to me for having made my
confirming authorship of the complaint to him necessary. He does not even
understand that he again inconvenienced me by making it necessary for me
to confirm my authorship of the complaint. Again, bad character, and in
this case, stupidity. You run Whispers and Warnings in order to serve as
a mediator between writers and publishers or editors in the case of a
dispute. If he wants his name cleared in your forum, he isn't going about
it the right way.

I hope that within the limits of honesty he makes a great fortune through
Haute Living. I am not writing these things to you, Angela, out of any
rancor towards Mr. Semilof. I rather want my fellow freelance writers to
know that while Mr. Semilof is publisher of Haute Living magazine, he is
capable of very low class behavior when dealing with writers.

Many thanks,
[SR]


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: January 26th, 2007, 2:03 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
FOUR MORE VICTIMS

From: [PL]
To: Angela Hoy
Subject: Haute Living Magazine
Date sent: Fri, 26 Jan 2007 08:52:26 -0800 (PST)

Dear Angela: I read your article on Seth Semilof and I, too, am a victim of
Semilof. I was his Yachting Director and brought in the yachting ads which
he so desperately needed in his publication. To this day, he has not fully
paid me for my commissions nor my expenses. When I asked if he would
please send me a check I was told it had been mailed.

Two weeks later I e-mailed him and once again requesting
my commissions but this time I asked if he would please
wire the monies owed as I was in need of it. He
e-mailed me back saying that he wanted to keep a paper trail and the check
was sent out that morning via USPS. How stupid was I as everyday I would
go to the mailbox in hopes of receiving his so-called mailed check but, of
course, it never came.

My attorney sent him a letter which he so boldly replied to
saying he owes me nothing and that I am just a desperate person
and that I am not honest. Well, needless to say, I have proof plus I have
saved everyone of his e-mails. My attorney is now preparing
papers to take Semilof to court. That's when we will see exactly
who the desperate, dishonest individual is!!

He had asked me last October if I would hire two girls for him to hand out
magazines at the Fort Lauderdale Boat Show. Which I did. Two very lovely,
classy 20 year olds that worked very hard for us and 2,000 magazines were
distributed thanks to them. We had an agreement that Semilof would pay
them $10/hr and take care of their lunch. The total amount between the
girls came to $365. Unfortunately he stiffed them, too. I have a very dear
friend of mine that wrote an article on yacht chartering. The editorial
was printed in the Oct/Nov issue but the writer to this day has not been
paid.


I hope that Semilof gets exactly what he deserves before he rips off
anymore unsuspecting souls. To anyone out there that is approached by
Semilof to write or sell ads for his magazines....run as fast as you can
in the other direction and don't look back.

Sincerely
PL


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: January 26th, 2007, 6:03 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
EE SAYS PUBLISHER SHOULD PAY

From: [EE]
To: Angela Hoy
Subject: reply on Haute Living comments
Date sent: Wed, 24 Jan 2007 13:53:11 -0500

Angela,

It would seem that this guy is very shady. I think it would be
interesting to see how many other writers he has working
for him have experienced the same problems. I know they
think they are alone but it would be interesting to see that
the complaints are justified from more than one source. I'm
not saying that SC doesn't deserve to be paid, but I'd like to
know how many of his other writers have gone through
the same complaints.

I'd love to see more of his writers speak up against him (unless of
course now he has threatened them all that if they do speak up, he will do
whatever to them as well) just because I have a feeling that these writers
working for him now will no longer be able to receive any work with other
magazines or other venues if they associate themselves with his magazine.

He obviously has made a name for himself now and it isn't a good one. Your
communication to him was very clear that all information could and would
be published on the "Whispers and Warnings" portion of your website.
Freelance writers have to protect themselves and you are looking out for their
best interests by posting these warnings. I am sure the freelance community
thanks you for this.

Bottom line is this - the publisher has to pay if he printed the work
and whether he likes it or not, he is not a good person. He is definitely
deluded - reminding me of my ex-sister-in-law in that she is a chronic
liar and so wouldn't know the truth when it hit her in the face. This sounds
like the same scenario. He can tell you he has x number of writers
working for him but in reality he probably has very few, none who would be repeat
if they received the same treatment SC did. - So, pay up mister. You owe
the writer for services rendered since you used her work in your publication.
--
[EE]


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: February 1st, 2007, 6:38 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
This publisher also owns:

http://www.hauteblog.com
http://www.hauteportfolio.com


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: February 3rd, 2007, 11:00 am 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
Kamal Hotchandani, Seth's partner, had agreed to look into these matters and come up with an equitable settlement. However, one of the writers isn't impressed (apparently she head this same promise before) and still plans to pursue action against Haute Living.

Here is the information [SR] found online about Kamal Hotchandani. Do you think it looks like his company can't afford to pay writers a few measly thousand bucks?

~~~~~

Kamal Hotchandani Joins Publisher Seth Semilof as Partner

Miami, FL (PRWEB) October 5, 2004 -- Kamal Hotchandani has joined publisher Seth Semilof as partner for the Miami-based Haute Living magazine. Hotchandani is currently the CEO of AMG International, a technology holding company, and has numerous business ties all over the world.

“As a successful entrepreneur, Hotchandani is expected to bring immediate value to the magazine,” notes Semilof. “He is widely recognized and respected by many South Florida developers. He will be a wonderful asset to the final phase of Haute Living, as we are working hard to becoming a respected media outlet to the Miami community.”

Haute Living magazine, a new luxury real estate magazine geared toward Miami’s most affluent real estate investors, promotes elegant properties in South Florida with impressive layouts and vibrant color reproduction. The publication supports Miami’s booming residential real estate market by distributing 30,000 magazines in more than 500 prestige locations, 300 luxury buildings and 50 exclusive residential communities throughout Miami.

After much success with the first issue, released in July, the magazine gained 17 new clients for the 72-page second issue, which will be released in late September, featuring commentary from the presidents of Esslinger-Wooten-Maxwell and Coldwell Banker Miami-Dade. A third issue, comprising 96 pages, is currently being prepared and is due out in late November. The issue will feature a three to four page feature on top developer Ugo Colombo and the exclusive, “by-invitation-only” Haute List, a guide to South Florida’s leading realtors in the luxury market.

~~~~~

Don't miss Kamal Hotchandani's bio on this page:
http://amginternational.com/content/management_cnt.html


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: February 13th, 2007, 1:49 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
From: Angela Hoy
To: ssemilof@hauteliving.com, newyork@hauteliving.com, florida@hauteliving.com, kamal@hauteliving.com, soniatita@hauteliving.com
Subject: ANOTHER COMPLAINT about Haute Living
Date sent: Wed, 07 Feb 2007 16:44:51 -0500

December 7, 2006

Haute Living Magazine / HauteLiving.com
Seth Semilof - ssemilof@hauteliving.com, newyork@hauteliving.com,
florida@hauteliving.com
Kamal Hotchandani, Publisher - kamal@hauteliving.com
Sonia Tita Puopolo, Communications Director - soniatita@hauteliving.com
201 Alhambra Circle, #501 / 1101 Brickell Ave., Suite 1701 / 104 Greene
Street, 1st Floor
Coral Gables, FL 33134 / Miami, FL 33131 / New York, NY 10012
P(305)373-0354 / P(646)415-8850

WritersWeekly.com has received another complaint about:
Haute Living Magazine / HauteLiving.com

WritersWeekly.com is a publication that publishes information for and
about freelance writers. The publication is the largest-circulation
freelance writing ezine in the world.

As part of that information, WritersWeekly.com publishes a Warnings
section on its website and in its newsletter. This warning section
contains reports about publications that are unprofessional in dealing
with writers, have refused to pay writers money owed to them, who have
not abided by their contracts, or who have unfair contract terms. These
reports are used by WritersWeekly.com's subscribers to decide which
publications they should and should not work with.

Your firm has been submitted to us for inclusion in the
WritersWeekly.com Whispers and Warnings section.

Step one of our investigation of this report is to gather all relevant
correspondence between your publication and the person submitting the
complaint so that we can piece together that person's side of the story.
Step one of our investigation has been completed.

[LB] (name not published here but was, of course, provided to
the publisher) alleges you owe her $750.00. See complete
allegation under my signature.

-----------------
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT
-----------------

The second step in our investigation is to send this communication to
your firm to get its side of the story. If you have evidence disputing
these allegations, or would like to make your own statement about these
allegations for publication in our report, please email
angela@writersweekly.com within two business days.

***All correspondence for our investigations must be in writing and is
subject to publication.***

If you do owe this person money, we strongly suggest you read
this article before responding:
http://www.writersweekly.com/the_latest ... 32006.html

Our report on your firm is scheduled for inclusion in our publication
next Wednesday.

If there is no response to these allegations, WritersWeekly.com will
still publish this complaint, but our readers will not be able to read
your side of the story.

We appreciate your prompt response in this matter.

Angela Hoy
Publisher
WritersWeekly.com

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
THE COMPLAINT
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Please count me in among the editorial freelancers who got
screwed by Seth Semilof at Haute Living. Seth hired me in
mid August to copy edit his magazine, which was going to
press the first week of September. In the two miserable
weeks I worked for him he patently refused to give me a
schedule of deliverables, or slate of incoming stories.
Further, he sent stories that needed more than
copyediting--they required full rewrites. He also expected
me to fact-check and then proof in final layout.

When I told him I wouldn't sign a contract until he
specified the deadlines and deliverables, he refused to
append and then refused to pay me for more than half the
work I performed. Further, he accused me of stealing his
software and complaining about the amount of work unjustly.
In fact, I complained that I had to cancel a long-planned
for trip at a penalty because he could not--or would
not--deliver a production schedule to me. At no time did I
have any idea what was coming and when.

Within a matter of hours he praised me, then fired me. He
then called me at home at 9:30 on a Friday night to berate
me. He afterwards told several staff members I walked out
on the job, and for 3 days thereafter continued to send me
harassing emails (all of which I have). He also yanked a
major story that I was commissioned to write--without a
kill fee or any other compensation for work that I turned
down in order to accommodate his work.

I sent a letter to him and his partner Kamal with an
invoice, explaining the costs incurred and asking for
payment. I included documentation of my canceled trip, the
alleged "stolen" software, which was in fact copies of
software--and for which he did provide not a correct
registration number. I never heard back from either of
them.

To this day he owes me half to the contract amount to which
we verbally agreed, plus the cancellation fee for my air
ticket.

I have all the emails pertaining to this matter--am happy
to post.

Please let me know if you have any questions or would like
evidence of this denouement. In my opinion, this is a
person who not only doesn't understand
how to manage a magazine, but he doesn't recognize talent when he sees it,
abuses the talent that he does have, and has enough hubris to
think he can push veteran writers around just so they can
have a byline in his magazine. And MAYBE get paid for it.

At this time I was a business-side editor for New York
magazine, editing one of the most-read real estate pages in
the magazine. In this job for nearly five years, I was
responsible for producing hundreds of pages of advertorial
content and all the back-office tasks associated with such
production. In other words, I was no slacker and no
stranger to the business. But I had never experienced
anything stranger than the short time I worked with Seth,
who sees himself as untouchable by the respected members
of the working media. I've been meaning to find an outlet
for warning others about this operation and am glad to find
WritersWeekly full in force.

Sincerely,
[LB]

As of today, February 13, 2007, the publisher has not responded to our inquiry.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: October 8th, 2007, 12:32 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
See:
http://www.miami-dadeclerk.com/public-r ... p=1&page=1

or, go here:
http://www.miami-dadeclerk.com/public-records

Click: Standard Record Search

and search for
Haute Living (and see other cases against them, too)

First Party (Code): STATE OF FLA (D)
Second Party: HAUTE LIVING INC
Clerk's File No: 2007 R 828106
Rec. Date: 8/21/2007
Entry Date: 8/21/2007 11:46:01 AM
Pages in Document: 1
Group ID: 1
Doc. Type: NTL - NOTICE OF TAX LIEN
Rec. Book/Page: 25871 / 3090


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: October 8th, 2007, 12:38 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
http://www.miami-dadeclerk.com/public-r ... p=1&page=1

or, go here:
http://www.miami-dadeclerk.com/public-records

Click: Standard Record Search

and search for
Haute Living (and see other cases against them, too)

First Party (Code): LANKINA, MARIA (D)
Second Party: HAUTE LIVING INC
Clerk's File No: 2007 R 965006
Rec. Date: 10/2/2007
Entry Date: 10/2/2007 11:12:38 AM
Folio No: Pages in Document: 1
Group ID: 1
Doc. Type: CVP - CIVIL COURT PAPER
Rec. Book/Page: 25963 / 4853
Misc. Reference: 07001328SP24 FJUD


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: October 8th, 2007, 12:41 pm 
Offline

Joined: August 1st, 2003, 9:52 am
Posts: 1876
http://www.miami-dadeclerk.com/public-r ... p=1&page=1

or, go here:
http://www.miami-dadeclerk.com/public-records

and search for
Haute Living (and see other cases against them, too)

First Party (Code): ST IVES INC HOLLYWOOD (D)
Second Party: HAUTE LIVING INC
Clerk's File No: 2007 R 778141
Rec. Date: 8/7/2007
Entry Date: 8/7/2007 7:51:11 AM
Folio No: Pages in Document: 1
Group ID: 1
Doc. Type: CVP - CIVIL COURT PAPER
Rec. Book/Page: 25837 / 2950
Orig. CFN No:
Orig. Book/Page:
Plat Book/Page:
Misc. Reference: 05024535CA01 ORDR

~~~~~

First Party (Code): ST IVES INC HOLLYWOOD (D)
Second Party: HAUTE LIVING INC
Subdivision Name:
Legal Description:
Clerk's File No: 2007 R 1177
Rec. Date: 1/2/2007
Entry Date: 1/2/2007 9:48:29 AM
Folio No: Pages in Document: 1
Group ID: 1
Doc. Type: JUD - JUDGEMENT
Rec. Book/Page: 25241 / 349
Misc. Reference: 05 24535 CA 11

~~~~~


First Party (Code): ST IVES INC HOLLYWOOD (D)
Second Party: HAUTE LIVING INC
Clerk's File No: 2006 R 1346690
Rec. Date: 12/19/2006
Entry Date: 12/19/2006 11:16:15 AM
Folio No: Pages in Document: 1
Group ID: 1
Doc. Type: CVP - CIVIL COURT PAPER
Rec. Book/Page: 25205 / 1184
Misc. Reference: 05024535CA01 ORDR

~~~~~

First Party (Code): ST IVES INC HOLLYWOOD (D)
Second Party: HAUTE LIVING INC
Clerk's File No: 2006 R 1254278
Rec. Date: 11/27/2006
Entry Date: 11/27/2006 11:14:59 AM
Folio No: Pages in Document: 1
Group ID: 1
Doc. Type: CVP - CIVIL COURT PAPER
Rec. Book/Page: 25126 / 758
Plat Book/Page:
Misc. Reference: 05024535CA01 DJUD


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 20 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours [ DST ]


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Exabot [Bot] and 0 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group