Rick Olney’s at it again. Because I’m convinced this vile person
gets some perverse pleasure from his name being mentioned in even
the most unflattering of terms, I hate writing about him. But, in
a comics community that includes too many good and trusting souls,
guys like him have to be exposed.
I’ve been writing about Olney for several years, but I don’t need
to refresh your memories as to his many past assaults on comicdom.
You can learn everything you need to know about him by just doing
a Google search on him. I can pretty much guarantee that you will
be horrified by what you find. He’s been doing bad stuff for too
long and people haven’t been shy about reporting it.
Google Rick Olney. In fact, do Google searches on anyone who wants
something from you or to do business with you or who seems to be
offering you the opportunity of a lifetime. Now that we live in an
era where such information is found easily, doing Google searches
should be considered simple due diligence for anyone who considers
themselves a comics industry professional. I have dodged several
bullets through such due diligence.
Olney currently claims he will be putting on a comics convention on
Veterans Day weekend. It’s called the Adirondack ComicFest. He’s
constantly changing the details of this almost certainly imaginary
event, but his claims have included partners he’s never identified;
charities that have not given him permission to use their names and
good reputations; and, of course, the usual threats to sue those of us
who warn prospective guests about Olney’s past transgressions.
Digression. I never kept track of when Olney first threatened me
with legal action or physical violence, but in all the years that
he’s being making these threats, he’s never been able to pull the
trigger on either threat. There’s two reasons for this. One, he has
no legal representation; he’s lost a number of lawsuits with nary an
attorney in sight. Two, he has no balls. He’s a bullying coward.
I stopped being afraid of his kind in grade school.
End of digression.
Olney has signed several guests to his alleged convention. He had
them sign a contract he found online and which he tried to alter to
fit his needs. It’s a contract created by a band for the venues in
which they perform. It’s almost totally one-sided in favor of the
band. There are no penalties if the band fails to live up to its
various obligations. The only obligations carrying any weight are
those of the venue to the band. The band can pretty much walk away
when they choose. Surprise, surprise, as some of Olney’s announced
guests learned more about his past, they canceled their appearances
at his imaginary convention.
Equally imaginary is the company/corporation/organization/whatever
which is named in these contracts. Just as no one has been able to
find any evidence of Olney’s partners in this convention, there is
no evidence that Olney’s supposed company - one of its recent names
was “Adirondack, LLC” - actually exists. There is no record of any
filing for the company within the state of New York.
In typical Olney fashion, he has refused to remove from his guest
list those who have canceled their appearance. He’s trying to use
their good names and reputations to lure others into his imaginary
convention. However, given the contract itself, the dubious status
of the alleged organization running the event, and the likelihood
that Olney still doesn’t have any actual legal representation, the
guests are not only within their rights to withdraw from the event
but risk no penalties for doing so.
Rick Olney. Legal genius.
By the way, lest my readers assume I make any claim to such legal
genius, let me set me you straight. Some of the guests and some of
us who warn folks about Olney have had these contracts evaluated by
actual lawyers. What I’ve reported above is based on the summaries
we’ve received from these good people.
How is Olney recruiting guests for this alleged event?
Olney is offering his guests a sometimes hefty appearance fee along
with airfare, hotel, and meals. It would be a good deal for these
guests if Olney’s long and unpleasant history didn’t put the smart
money on his inability or unwillingness to deliver on his promises.
His debts are considerable and he expresses no sincere interest in
paying these debts. Indeed, he often mocks those to whom he owes
money, even when they’ve won judgments against him.
Olney is also appealing to the desire of his guests to do something
for our military veterans. However, as with previous Olney events,
real and imagined, he doesn’t contact legitimate charities to get
their permission to raise money for them nor is there any evidence
that the various charities, whose good names and reputations he has
used, have ever received money from him. In the case of this new
convention, he’s named several veterans organizations as recipients
of his largess. So far, not one has verified that he has contacted
them or that they have given him permission to use their names and
symbols. He currently claims his event will benefit “non-specific”
veterans charities. I’m not buying it. Are you?
At this time, the venue where Olney claims his convention will take
place doesn’t show his event on their calendar, though there is one
conference room booked for one evening of the alleged convention at
another venue and by a different company name: Olney Enterprises.
More reasons to be wary.
I’ll end by repeating a warning I’ve given often:
If you’re approached by Rick Olney or a representative of this man,
if you are approached by Olney or anyone else representing entities
known as The Mighty Mini-Con, TightLip Entertainment, ORCA, or any
other Olney event or organization named in this blog, I strongly urge you
to run in the other direction.
Run like the very wind.
I’ll be back tomorrow with more stuff.
© 2011 Tony Isabella