[scribus] A status update from the Managing Director of FLES Books
benjamingoodger at flesbooks.com
Tue Feb 3 01:56:11 CET 2009
2009/2/1 "Christoph Schäfer" <christoph-schaefer at gmx.de>
> 3) FLES Books has a contract with a printer, and the latter failed to live
> up to the contract several times, mostly due to a Byzantine buraucracy in
> connection with what appears to be sheer incompetence. First, we/FLES Books
> have been guaranteed to be able to print in the UK and the USA. Once we
> delivered the PDFs to the printer, it turned out that due to a minor
> bureaucratic error on the side of the printer, we could only use the UK
> plant, which means that shipping costs will skyrocket, thus diminishing the
> revenues for the Scribus project and FLES Books. Next, after delivering the
> customer list as requested by the printer, an account manager invented
> reason after reason as to why the order could not be fulfilled -- again:
> bureaucracy gone mad and red tape all over the place. At the same time, they
> didn't accept a retraction of orders from customers who asked for a refund.
> So we and FLES Books are essentially caught between a rock and a hard place.
> Moreover, the printer refuses to tell us when the books will finally be
> shipped. Please believe us that we're as upset as many of you, to say the
> least. I really don't think that we will allow the next edition to be
> handled by this printer, especially if one considers that the company
> received money in advance to set up this job.
Unfortunately, I can confirm that the above is correct as far as I am aware.
I would like to clarify the reasons for some of the recent actions of FLES
Books. We have indeed been supplied with a number of reasons, separated by
huge delays, as to why the order for the first 165 customers has not been
After completing the setup process and making the initial order on the 12th
of January, we received on the 21st an order spreadsheet populated with the
data we had supplied were asked to complete it with more information,
specifically customers' telephone numbers. When we returned the completed
spreadsheet the day after, we received an email informing us that some of
the country codes we used in the spreadsheet did not match Lightning
Source's range of acceptable codes. This was on a Thursday afternoon; after
this point, regrettably, nobody at FLES Books was available to check the
codes (they were correct; Lightning Source were mistaken) and answer the
email until the Monday morning (the 26th).
Since then, we have received no communication except the reply to an email
that we sent on the 29th asking for a status update, which promised
information from the US branch. No such update has been received and we will
be telephoning the UK branch tomorrow to ask what has happened.
Meanwhile, while we are making every effort to ensure that orders are
fulfilled in the quickest time possible, a small number of customers have
nonetheless requested refunds.
It appears that any attempt to cancel orders, by altering the customer
details spreadsheet sent to Lightning Source, will not be successful.
Therefore, all customers who placed orders before the 22nd of January will
eventually receive a copy of the book (whether wanted or not), at FLES
Books' expense, and for this reason we will not willingly issue any refunds
for orders made before the 22nd of January 2009 unless as a result of having
such copies of the book returned to us.
Orders made on or after the 22nd of January have not yet been submitted, and
so we are able to cancel orders ahead of the next submission to Lightning
Source. We will therefore be happy to issue full refunds to customers who
placed such orders, in the event that they wish to cancel their order until
such time as orders are being quickly and reliably processed by Lightning
Source. Customers who ordered on or after the 22nd should send an email to
refunds.scribusmanual at flesbooks.com if they wish to receive a refund.
Thank you very much for your patience. Please don't hesitate to ask
questions concerning any of this information, by replying to this address
(please CC williambarry at flesbooks.com).
FLES Books Ltd.
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