Report: #776100

Complaint Review: Derek Visconi Sakura Publishing

  • Submitted: Tue, September 13, 2011
  • Updated: Fri, May 25, 2012
  • Reported By: JT — Chicago Illinois United States of America
  • Derek Visconi Sakura Publishing

    United States of America

Show customers why they should trust your business over your competitors...

Derek Visconi of Sakura Publishing Will Cheat You

BewareDerek Visconi is "CEO" of a website called Sakura Publishing that publishes ebooks.

He advertises on craigslist (and other places) for people to work converting PDF / .doc ebooks to Smashwords and Kindle formats.

Derek will come off as a nice guy but will avoid discussing to discuss a firm price. He will claim that payment is "no problem" and then after you complete work and bill him, he will come up with all kinds of excuses to not pay.

He will then insist on a "free sample".  I suggest that IF you decide to do anything for this person, that you demand at least partial payment before doing any work.

You have been warned. This guy wants you to do high quality work for peanuts. If you are willing to do that, fine. Just be aware that this person will change his "nice guy" tune in a moment's notice after getting your work.

He talks about "trust" and then turns around and will not pay even after you submit the work.

I gave this person a steep discount and he still refused to pay.

Just beware and I really would suggest avoiding working with him or Sakura Publishing. There are other ways to make money than working for dishonest people such as this.

Derek Visconi, smashwords, sakura, kindle, amazon, ebook, e-book, epub, publishing, bok, scam, fraud, cheat, dishonest, editing, editor, edit, paypal

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This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 09/13/2011 07:02 AM and is a permanent record located here: The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year. Ripoff Report has an exclusive license to this report. It may not be copied without the written permission of Ripoff Report. READ: Foreign websites steal our content

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#1 Consumer Comment

Derek Vasconi Rated A+ , in my book.

AUTHOR: RJW Business Development - (United States of America)

Hi, I am Rich Wyant, I run a business development firm which has provided some services for Derek Vasconi. We have had no negative issues whatsoever with him regarding disbursement of agreed funds. At times his services have cost in the upwards of thousands of dollars, and we have never had an issue getting paid. We submit the invoice, and he has always paid it BEFORE the due date.  I am going to go out on a limb here and speculate that the services you provided to Mr. Vasconi were perhaps "substandard"?  If there is one thing I can say about Derek Vasconi, is that he expects "perfection" and will settle for nothing less. If you are not willing, nor capable of providing him top notch service, than he is likely to kindly let you know that your work is unacceptable. And in this business, if a consumer is unhappy, they should never be expected to pay a single cent. I really hope that friends, potential clients as well as any customers, take the time to read all comments. I am fully aware first hand of Derek Vasconi's business ethics, and I can speak first hand, that he offers individuals nothing but the best products and services in his niche. This initial report comes as a total shock to me personally, since I know all too well that with Derek, what you see is what you get. He operates in a very ethical and moral manner at all times, but he does want only the best for his business and his customers.I would be interested in hearing more from the original poster of this thread, perhaps he can show us the work he has done for Mr. Vasconi so we can all judge the situation a little better.

In my experience, Derek Vasconi of Sakura Publishing has been a true pleasure to deal with.

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#2 Consumer Comment

Just Maybe..

AUTHOR: vabeaty - (United States of America)

Has it occurred to you (speaking to the original poster) that perhaps you simply did not do the job to the specified requirements?

I have worked with Derek and Sakura Publishing and have never, ever had a problem with payment. Derek is quick to offer both payment as well as feedback for a job well done. Perhaps this is where your problem lies. Maybe you did not do the job as you were instructed to do.

It is not at all uncommon for freelancers to be asked to submit samples or demos to prove that they can handle a job. I sincerely doubt that you were ripped off. If no one else has had an issue with payment, then it falls on you. I think that maybe you expected to be paid for shoddy work or maybe you just completely misread the requirements for the job. Either way, I think it shows extremely bad taste to bring this out in the open and tarnish someone's good name simply because you made a mistake. You give freelancers a bad name.
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#3 REBUTTAL Owner of company

Jake Turner is still lying.

AUTHOR: Sakura Publishing - (USA)

I think it's strange that you have put down such lies and can get away with it. I mean, it's easy to hide behind the computer and say whatever you want. Notice how many people jumped to defend me? Do you know why? Because I do treat everyone with a huge amount of respect. I have all the emails between us. I was very clear as to my terms. I needed to see a demo of your work. Why is that so hard to accept? You are the only who had a problem accepting it and what's more, now you are trudging my name through the muck because it took you longer than you probably expected it would take to do a demo! Guess what? If you knew how to do the work in the first place, the ebook would have taken you maybe an hour tops to do. I know this for a fact because the guy I hired AFTER your whole childish debacle took 55 minutes EXACTLY to do the same edit it took you 6 hours to do. Also keep in mind what you submitted to me was INCORRECT. You did a HORRIBLE job. You keep saying on here you did a great job but I have the proof in my didn't. Anyone who reads this report and would like to see his work I will be MORE THAN HAPPY TO share his extremely amateurish and terrible work. 

It's people like you that give Craigslist a bad name. You really should consider seeing a psychiatrist given the blatant lies you are spreading. As mom used to say, the Proof is in the pudding. I got the proof, you don't, it's that simple. All you got is a computer and alot of crappy sites like this one that let anyone get on here and lie with absolutely no factual basis to support their claim. It's ok though, I've been enjoying paying people all the money I would have paid you to do the work you would have been doing, had you done the work right in the first place and wasn't such a whiny little kid about everything. It's truly your loss, not mine. I am sorry you have to act out in this manner. I truly am. Anyone reading this, I strongly suggest you DON'T EVER HIRE THIS MAN to do any ebook conversions, given the fact that he can't do it in an efficient amount of time and he also may pull a stunt like this even if you tell him in very clear terms that he agreed to that you HAD to see work from him before you can pay. I would've waived this requirement had you some kind of past portfolio or existing work, but now I can see why you didn't have a portfolio to show me--nobody wanted to hire you lol!!!!!!!!! That might be the best laugh I've had through all of this yet.

 Jake Turner liar, CHEAT, EBOOK FAILURE, poor ebook conversion, chicago loser, chicago abuser, Jake Turner criminal, cheat, dishonest, fired, unfriendly
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#4 Consumer Comment

Sakura Publishing Is The Best!!!

AUTHOR: LdyDay - (United States of America)

Working with Derek Vasconi and Sakura Publishing has been nothing but an enjoyable and rewarding experience. If it wasn't for Derek or Sakura Publishing giving me the opportunity to publish my book, I would have a pretty unsatisfying life. I've been working with Derek for over six months now and not only has he done everything he said he would do, he has gone above and beyond to help me accomplish my dreams. He has been patient, hardworking, understanding, and informative. I was truly lucky to fall into the hands of someone who strives to build his company and even more, building the people around him. I've recieved countless emails from Derek throughout the whole process of publishing my book with week to week updates on the progression of my book, all the way up to my final rough draft. He has also sent me packages including a stack of postcards for promotional purposes...FREE of charge just out of sheer excitement to see people succeed. All the authors under Sakura would agree that Derek Vasconi is none of the things you claim him to be, in fact, he is the exact opposite and I am a testament to that and I have a book to prove it.  
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#5 Consumer Comment

Sakura is great!

AUTHOR: Slg2g - (United States of America)

I am a Sakura author and have worked with Derek vasconi and have been nothing but pleases with his professionalism. Mr Vasconi has always given me fair prices and been nothing but honest. I would recommend his compnay to anyone.

Stephanie Gordon
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#6 Author of original report


AUTHOR: JT - (United States of America)

Simple. I did the work. Sent the completed file and this guy did NOT PAY.

I have ALL the files and emails.

Even after he REFUSED TO PAY (because he then, suddenly "could not afford it") I went ahead and sent this guy the complete file JUST TO PROVE THE QUALITY OF WORK I DID.

(If you cannot afford to pay contractors, you should have stated so up front.)

I even gave this guy a large discount over standard fees for the service.

I only charged DEREK VASCONI $10 an hour when the going rate on the Smashwords site for editing/configuration services (ACCORDING TO SMASHWORDS' OWN USER GUIDE) is MINIMUM $25 an hour.

I couldn't care less what these other responses say.

I am the one who Derek Vasconi DID NOT PAY. Even after I SENT him the work.

He can STILL PAY and the problem will be SOLVED.

You want to "sue" DEREK?. Be my guest.

 I'll be happy to show the work I did and the emails sent.

Your choice. 

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#7 UPDATE Employee

Rebuttal to JT

AUTHOR: KrisCampbell - (United States of America)

The recent ripoff report filed by "JT" is a gross misrepresentation of Derek Vasconi and Sakura publishing.  It is truly a shame when an individual misunderstands or ignores a specified agreement and attempts to smear a company.

Derek Vasconi is a reputable publisher who works tirelessly to support his author clients.  I have been working with Derek on my own novel since March.  From the very beginning, Derek was clear and candid about the price and nature of his services.  The contract was straightforward and understandable.

There is no way I could have written my book without Derek's help and support.  He has gone above and beyond his job as editor/publisher.  I am now working with him on the actual publication and e-book conversion of the book.  Once again, he gave me the pricing information upfront and allowed me to decide which options I wanted.  He also generously allows me to create my own payment plan.

I have been so pleased with Derek's performance as editor/publisher that I recently referred an author friend to Sakura.  He informed me that Derek was just as honest with him about contracts and pricing.  Derek knows what he is doing and would never mislead a client.  His reputation means everything to him.

I am already outlining my second book.  I would be more than happy to use Derek Vasconi as my editor/publisher again.
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#8 UPDATE Employee

Actually, it looks like Derek was the one that got ripped off...

AUTHOR: Sarah the Intern - (United States of America)

I am Derek's intern and associate editor. I have worked with him for over six months and have never once had a complaint or problem. When he first took me on, he requested that I perform a simple editing project for free. He did this so that he could better judge my abilities, and at absolutely no point did he lead me to conclude that it would be paid. Since then, he has paid me generously and on time for all of my work. In fact, he will pay me up front and throw bonuses on top of what he has already promised to pay. I never expected this since I was hired as an intern; I was prepared to do all the work for free. But, Derek has gone out of his way to compliment my work, offer his support whenever I need help, and to kick me some cash for jobs well done.

Having been the victim of scams and illegal work practices (I have an outstanding Dept. of Labor claim against my former employer), I am deeply offended that this person has lumped Derek together with the sort of low-lifes that take advantage of people struggling in this poor economy. Because I'd been burned before, I took great care when I was first offered an internship to question Derek about his practices; he carefully and satisfactorily answered my questions and has since proven himself to be a man of his word. Derek is not just an employer but a close friend. He is generous, kind, and extremely supportive. I will gladly go to court for him. And, so will the many professionals and authors that have worked with him, too.
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#9 REBUTTAL Owner of company

completely unfounded and ridiculous

AUTHOR: Sakura Publishing - (USA)

As the owner of Sakura Publishing, I pride myself on the fact that I am very congenial and up front about what I expect from people when they work for me. I was contacted by this individual who claims I ripped him off through an ad I put out on craigslist. The ad specified that I wanted to find somebody to help me with converting the books written by my authors to acceptable e-book formats. I specifically required a demo of the person's service before I would begin to actually work with them in any type of official capacity where I would give payment for services rendered. I am a small publishing company and chose to not throw my money around unwisely, hence, I required a demo of the work they wanted to do for me.
Anyways, I had over 145 responses to the craigslist ad. Not a single person misunderstood that I would require a demo from them before we could engage in a payment for services arrangement. This is the only person who seemed to think he was owed money simply because the demo I asked him to do took him a long time to complete. Not only that, but when I did check his work, it was not right at all and would have actually required him to do even more work. This man became extremely furious with me when not given money he thinks he was owed, called me and yelled at me on my cell, sent threatening emails, and now I see he is going around claiming I ripped him off. Why is it that he did not understand that I needed to see if he could actually do the work I was asking, which he wasn't even able to do properly? 
In any event, I told him I would not under any circumstance use his ebook conversion. I wouldn't anyways because it was wrong but out of respect for him being so upset I wouldn't want to give him a chance to claim what he's claiming. I have saved every email transaction between us and if anyone would care to see them, I would be happy to share them. It clearly states my terms at the beginning and shows it is not my fault that this man decided to change the terms to what he felt they should be. 
As I stated before, I pride myself on what I do and I have hundreds of satisfied customers and also plenty of people that work with me who have no complaints at all about what we do together. I am fair, honest, and the sad part is I would have even given this man something for his efforts anyways, just to be a nice guy, but he became so extremely belligerent with me and went from 0 to a million on the rage meter that I felt it prudent to not talk further with him. Again, I have all the emails as proof of his clear misunderstanding of the terms laid out to him before any work was done on his part. I do think it's my right that when somebody yells at me on the phone, I don't have to deal with them anymore.
Along with this, I should point out that I have found a person who is doing ebook conversions now that is amazing and didn't have a single problem doing for me a demo ebook conversion. He is now enjoying thousands of dollars being given to him for his services.
 I think it's sad when people can just write such a horrendous claim that puts my company in jeopardy simply because they do not have the obvious capacity for understanding basic contract law. I do plan on consulting my attorney for this offensive report made and I will be seeking damages if this report remains up. Thank you. 

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#10 General Comment

About Derek Vasconi and Sakura-Publishing

AUTHOR: Maximus McCullough - (United States of America)

I would like to make a quick little rebuttal. I am the web developer for and I have had NO problems getting my money from Derek. Derek appears to be a nice guy because he IS a nice guy. I feel that this complaint is unjustified and I am willing to go to court with Derek and testify on his behalf that this is a slanderous black-male defamation of character. As for my credentials my name is Maximus McCulllough and my website is and I will encourage anyone that would like to work with Derek to do so with all confidence. Derek is a hard worker and he does pay his bills.  Thanks for reading!
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