Adage demands apology from Huffpo for stolen journalism as a system


Simon Dumenco wrote an AdAge article: Thanks for the Apology, Huffington Post. Now Please Apologize to the Writer You Suspended, and cuts HuffPo down to size. Their habit of regurgitating, oh sorry, "aggregating" news articles from other sources while hiding the links to the original article way down at the bottom hasn't gone unnoticed by those who provide original content, and Simon's demand of an apology is both informative and seriously sarcastic. I can't find a word to disagree with. I'm dying to see this AdAGe article re-aggregated by HuffPo.

I have to say, though, that I'm disheartened by your decision to indefinitely suspend the writer who "over-aggregated" (in the words of Steve Myers at the Poynter Institute's Romenesko blog) my post at I'm certainly not alone in feeling this way. I imagine that, like me, you've been reading the reactions that have been rippling across the media blogosphere, and you're finding that there's general unanimity that HuffPo is singling out -- indeed, scapegoating -- a young writer for engaging in a style of aggregration long practiced, condoned and encouraged by Huffington Post editorial management. If you haven't already seen it, Ryan Tate's Gawker post titled "HuffPo Suspends Writer for Doing 'What We Were Taught and Told to Do'" is definitely worth reading, as is Choire Sicha's brief but delightfully over-the-top post at The Awl, in which he writes that HuffPo's suspension decision is "along the lines of arresting hookers instead of johns, or drug users instead of drug importers, or something" (not that Choire has firsthand experience with any of those things).

You've surely been noting a theme in the critiques of your decision: Tons of people in the media world have witnessed -- and have been victims of -- HuffPo's casual editorial muggings over the years. For instance, consider the first line of Kevin Roderick's post yesterday at LA Observed: "What the Huffington Post does with many stories it picks up from others (including LA Observed) is have a junior writer rewrite them without adding new facts or smart observation, then not hint until the end that the story actually came from somewhere else." Or Dennis Romero's post at LA Weekly, in which he blasts HuffPo's "hypocrisy," writing, "Seems to us that every other time we tune in to HuffPo we see such aggressive aggregation, e.g. other peoples' stories rewritten with substantially buried links toward the end."

about the author

Dabitch Creative Director, CEO, hell-raising sweetheart and editor of Adland. Globetrotting Swede who has lived and worked in New York, London, San Francisco, Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Stockholm.

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