“Naked Rhino and NR Media have, with great fanfare, announced their motion to amend their complaint in the lawsuit pending against Too Much Media in federal court in New Jersey,” TMM said it in its statement. “They have obviously sought to gain from publishing false statements what they have not been able to gain after a year and a half of litigation.”
The statement called observers to “consider the source” of the claims made in the NRM motion, and said that TMM’s attorneys will “vigorously oppose the motion to allow its filing.”
The statement also included a list of items that TMM asserts are facts that have come to light through NRM’s litigation to date, including:
- “Chris Petoski, the president of NR and NRM, in testimony has admitted cursing and hanging up on John Albright after John Albright telephoned him to find out why affiliates have not been properly paid.”
- “NR’s former technical director has testified that the accounting for affiliate rebills was flawed, not because of a problem with NATS, but because of his use of an erroneous password. Petoski was aware of this but refused to make required corrections.”
- “Until this day NR and NRM have not correctly paid affiliates what was owed them for rebills since well before the lawsuit started in August 2006.”
- “NR and NRM have not set aside money to pay the affiliates when the litigation ends.”
- “NR and NRM, in transferring its affiliate tracking software from NATS to Epoch’s Hosted MPA solution chose not to pay what Petoski testified was $5,000-$10,000 for the software necessary to keep track of its obligations to affiliates and sales generated prior to the transfer.”
The statement also noted that the attorney who is now seeking to represent NRM in the case, Charles Carreon, is also counsel for Mansion Productions, the maker of the primary competing product for NATS, MPA3, and followed that observation with the question “coincidence?”
With respect to the much-publicized NATS security breach, TMM’s statement asserted that the breach “has not, apparently, continued, as TMM has received no related complaints since December.”
“TMM is very much aware of its obligations to the industry,” the statement said. “It was that feeling of obligation which led to John Albright’s call to Chris Petoski in August, 2006. Think of it – what did John Albright or TMM have to gain by picking a fight with NR, NRM or Petoski? It’s that same feeling of obligation which has caused TMM, on a monthly basis, since 2005, to deliver a CD containing the updated NATS source code and a list of current clients to its attorneys for safekeeping. In the unlikely event anything happen to TMM, its NATS customers are protected.”
The statement also took NRM to task for, in effect, trying its case in public view.
“Lawsuits are meant to be tried in courts,” TMM said in its statement. “Because, however, NR, NRM and their friends have sought to use various media outlets to try to harm NATS and Too Much Media, a response was required. We can only hope and request that you be objective and fair in considering all related communications.”
In response to the statement, Carreon, the general counsel for NRM that was referenced in TMM’s statement, told XBIZ that what he found most interesting about TMM’s statement is what it did not say.
“It is TMM’s contention that NRM is at fault for under-reporting the rebills at issue,” Carreon said. “In order to assert that, they have to argue that NRM circumvented NATS, and overcame its ‘shave-proof’ nature in order to intentionally shave rebills — but nowhere in this statement do they say that.”
Carreon described as “kind of a hoot” TMM’s assertion that the rebill accounting was flawed due to “erroneous password” use by Petoski.
“What kind of processing software starts miscounting rebills because of a user putting in an incorrect password?,” Carreon said. “I’ve used a lot of software and a lot of websites that require a password, and never have I entered my Bank of America password incorrectly, for example, and seen ‘you have punched in the wrong password — here, have someone else’s money.’ It just doesn’t make a whole lot of sense.”
Carreon brushed off the implication that he was biased against TMM, or otherwise affected by the fact that Mansion Productions is another of his clients.
”If you represent one lawn mower company, the chances are pretty good that a third party suing another lawn mower company might retain you, on the idea that you might have some specific knowledge about lawn mowers,” Carreon said. “Mansion is simply a good client that does a good job of providing a service that TMM also provides. That’s the only connection and relevance here — I’m reasonably well-informed about the kind of service that TMM provides.”
Carreon did concur with TMM on one point made in its statement, however: the facts of the case, whatever they are, will eventually come to light in court.
“They [TMM] are in possession of the information that would answer the questions that are implicit in their [statement issued Monday],” Carreon said. “The innocent have nothing to worry about. If they are correct that they have done nothing wrong, then they have no cause for concern.”
Mansion Productions released a one-line response to the TMM statement, stating simply "Mansion is focusing on providing excellent service to its growing list of clients, and is not involved in any litigation."