I recieved letters in November 2007 saying that they wanted to Publish my poem in "Immortal Verses". Well, Upon saying that it was my original work I could recieve a "discounted price" for the anthology that my work appeared in. Yeah, some discount. I would have payed $60 or something around that. Why exactly do I pay for my own work? Any ligitament contest would supply each winning poet with a complimentary copy.
I also recieved letters saying that I was selected for "The Best Poems and Poets of 2007" and needed to send in another poem. So I did and the letter I got back said the same thing the first letter said. This one also had "hand written" (which I don't know if it actually hand written) on it 'Wonderful verse! select for "The Sound of Poetry" -MSM'.
So my next email from them I ignorantly gave them my permission to use both poems in the Sound of Poetry. (Out of millions of submissions what are the odds that they would use 2 poems by the same poet when they only choose 30 poems.)
The only reason I even submitted a poem was to get to a website about Napoleon for a school project. I couldn't get to the site with out saying I would like to do one of the suggested sites. That should've been a big clue that even the Napoleon site was a fake!
So upon doing research I came upon this site. Big scam. It seems that everyone who posted somthing on here about Howard Ely or Poetry.com was awarded the "Editors Choice Award." Well join the club. I guess everyone who entered the contest falls into the "15% who win the award..."
They also send the same emails to you over and over. Then at the end say "If you have already ...... (payed, given permission, editted your poem, etc.) then ignore this email."
If you want your poems off their site, then good luck. If you hav successfully done so already, then all the power to you. There is nothing you can do to remove your poem from their site on your own. If you email them back with the email adress they use, you only get an email back to you with a customer service phone number. If you choose to call them, then good luck getting a person to talk to. If you get a person, then check to make sure your poem gets off the site and make sure it doesnt magically appear again.
I believe that Howard Ely (If this is a real person...) and Poetry.com just build you up to make you believe you are a good poet. Don't get me wrong. There are many good poems on that website, but also some that don't deserve to exist. When they get good poems, they use them for their own money. No royalties for the poets.
I put my story on here to try to get a lawyer involved. We deserve better than somone stealing our work and making money off it. If anyone reads this and is affected by Poetry.com/Howard Ely, then write a report. We need to take a stand and have that website shut down before even more people are affected by it.