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21 Jun 2017

Danuta Kean, The Guardian

Major publishers move to defend Greenpeace in dispute with logging firm

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The world's biggest book publishers have been dragged into a bitter dispute between a US logging company and environmental campaigners Greenpeace...Publishers, including Penguin Random House and Murdoch-owned HarperCollins, became involved after a petition signed by more than 100 authors in support of Greenpeace was handed in at US publishing trade show BookExpo. The petition called for publishers using Resolute products to use their clout to pressurise the company into dropping the lawsuit and addressing alleged logging practices.

Hachette Livre...expresseds concern that the Rico action poses a threat to free speech and could be used to silence environmental organisations at a time when the US government has stated its intention to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement on climate change...Other publishers have expressed frustration with the way the dispute has escalated, with several describing it, off the record, as a mess.

It is unlikely that the case will come to a swift conclusion...But publishers may be forced to take economic action to end the row.