Milo Yiannopoulos to represent himself in lawsuit against Simon & Schuster
Milo Yiannopoulos has fired his attorneys and decided to represent himself in a lawsuit against Simon & Schuster.
The controversial figurehead of the right made the decision to act as his own counsel as his attorney cited that there were “irreconcilable differences” between himself and his client.
Yiannopoulos is suing the publishing house Simon & Schuster for cancelling his book deal.
The publisher gained the rights to his book for an advance of $255,000 (£200,000), before cancelling the deal in February after a recording emerged that appeared to show Yiannopoulos endorsing sex between “younger boys” and older men.
The relationship between Yiannopoulos and his former lawyer reportedly became “untenable” after the pair had a “fundamental disagreement”.
A statement read that Yiannopoulos’ “lack of cooperation rendered his attorney’s representation “unreasonable difficult to carry out effectively”.
Yiannopoulos, who was a former editor at Breitbart, claimed that the source of “disagreement” between him and his attorney’s stemmed from Simon & Schuster’s discovery tactics.
“We asked that all pertinent documents be open to the public record,” Yiannopoulos wrote. “But Simon & Schuster demanded that virtually all of the documents in the lawsuit remain confidential, and had them classified “attorney’s eyes only”.
This meant that he could not know the contents of the evidence being brought against him in the lawsuit.
“S&S has persuaded the court to withhold from me the documents I need to read in order to properly assess my own case.
“Therefore, I will now be representing myself pro se, so I can directly see the material, and I look forward to revealing Simon & Schuster’s perfidy in court,” he added.
Among the scathing criticisms, the publisher’s notes Yiannopoulos needed a “stronger argument against feminism than saying that they are ugly and sexless and have cats” and that another chapter needs “a better central thesis than the notion that gay people should go back in the closet”.
Editor Mitchell Ivers doesn’t hold back in his criticisms of the alt-right writer.
“Throughout the book, your best points seem to be lost in a sea of self-aggrandizement and scattershot thinking,” and adds: “Careful that the egotistical boasting … doesn’t make you seem juvenile.”
Another comment in the manuscript reads: “Add something like this – only less self-serving”.
“The use of phrases like ‘two-faced backstabbing bitches’ diminishes your overall point,” reads one comment.
“Too important a point to end in a crude quip” is another. “Unclear, unfunny, delete,” reads another.
The publishers argue that it had an absolute contractual right to not publish Yiannopoulos’ work
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According to papers filed by Simon & Schuster, Yiannopoulos did not immediately return an $80,000 advance, which they say represented a “full satisfaction and discharge of Simon & Schuster’s obligation under the [Publishing] Agreement.”
They also labelled the lawsuit a “meritless publicity stunt.”
“Yiannopoulos accepted the payment without protest, thereby sealing the accord and satisfaction and barring this lawsuit as a matter of centuries-old law,” their lawyer writes.
“That should have been the end of this contractual matter.
“Instead, Yiannopoulos waited approximately five months to file this lawsuit, in a naked attempt to drum up publicity for the publication of his book,” states court papers.