Poor Mark Driscoll. First he’s caught plagiarizing repeatedly in his books and now a Christian magazine is reporting that his church paid huge amounts of money to buy up copies of his latest book to make sure that it made the NY Times bestseller list.
Seattle’s Mars Hill Church paid a California-based marketing company at least $210,000 in 2011 and 2012 to ensure that Real Marriage, a book written by Mark Driscoll, the church’s founding pastor, and his wife Grace, made the New York Times best-seller list.
According to a document obtained by WORLD, Result Source Inc. (RSI) contracted with Mars Hill “to conduct a bestseller campaign for your book, Real Marriage on the week of January 2, 2012. The bestseller campaign is intended to place Real Marriage on The New York Times bestseller list for the Advice How-To list.”
The marketing company also promised to help place Real Marriage on the Wall Street Journal Business, USA Today Money, BN.com (Barnes & Noble), and Amazon.com best-seller lists…
The details of the agreement between Mars Hill and Result Source are complicated. Result Source received a fee of $25,000 to coordinate a nationwide network of book buyers who would purchase Real Marriage at locations likely to generate reportable sales for various best-seller lists, including the New York Times list. Mars Hill also paid for the purchase of at least 11,000 books ranging in price from $18.62 to $20.70, depending on whether the books were purchased individually or in bulk. The contract called for 6,000 of the books to be bought by individuals, whose names were supplied by the church. Another 5,000 books were bought in bulk.
This is how a lot of books make the bestseller list, especially books with a political or religious theme. For politicians, companies and PACs buy up thousands of books to give them out to employees or donors. It’s a way of getting around the campaign contribution limits. It’s a pretty good racket.