A suit by author David Goggins says Amazon knowingly allowed the sale of bootleg copies of his self-published books. (Amazon Photos)

Amazon has been sued by David Goggins, the author, endurance athlete, motivational speaker, and former Navy SEAL, on allegations that the company knowingly allowed the sale of fake versions of his books and other products.

The lawsuit, filed Feb. 23 in U.S. District Court in Seattle, alleges that Amazon failed to take action despite hundreds of messages from Goggins and his representatives asking the company to stop allowing third-party sellers to offer counterfeit copies of his best-selling, self-published books, “Can’t Hurt Me” and “Never Finished.”

“Despite Amazon’s full knowledge of these bootleg book sales, Amazon continued to allow them on its websites and marketplaces,” the suit says. “Amazon did not care. It continued to make money from each bootleg item sold.”

Amazon did not respond to a request for comment. The company has launched initiatives including “Project Zero” and an internal Counterfeit Crimes Unit as part of a broader crackdown on counterfeit products on its site. The company has also filed numerous suits against counterfeiters in partnership with a variety of brands.

Among other assertions, the lawsuit from says the sale of fake copies of Goggins’ books has damaged his reputation, as many of the counterfeit books arrived with major production errors and flaws.

At one point, the suit says, Goggins was compelled to knowingly sign 125 bootleg books at an event because one of his clients had bought them on Amazon, and he didn’t want to disappoint his fans.

Goggins, frustrated by the lack of action by Amazon, took to Instagram in October 2023 to bring attention to the issue. After this post, the suit says, Amazon shut down bootleg sales by limiting sales to authorized sellers.

“Amazon could have prevented the listing, sale, and distribution of bootlegs at any time,” the suit says. “Only after Goggins’ post exposed Amazon to public scrutiny did it decide to. But the harm was already done.”

The suit alleges infringement of personality rights, false advertising, tortious interference, unjust enrichment, and contributory and vicarious copyright infringement, in addition to violation of the Washington Consumer Protection Act. It seeks unspecified financial damages and an order to destroy all unauthorized copies of Goggins’ books.

Read the full text below. Bloomberg News was first to report about the lawsuit.

David Goggins vs. Amazon by GeekWire on Scribd

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