As the MSM Pull More Stories from the Blogosphere and Internet-only News Sites, It's Time to Revise Their Policies for Crediting Original Sources
It's Not About Ego or Even Plagarism...It's About Credibility and the Truth, Stupid
In case you missed it, AP recently lifted an article as researched and written by RAW STORY and published a version of it as their own. Along the way, they seem to have forgotten to give RAW the attribution they deserved for the many hours of research and work they put into the story in order to file the piece in the first place.
RAW's Larisa Alexandrovna originally discovered the gem after plowing through a bunch of Bush Administration policy statements on National Security Clearance policies and comparing the most recent version to previous versions of that same policy side-by-side. One of the RAW researchers confirmed her work and the subtle, but important changes she found, and then Larisa, along with RAW's Executive Editor John Byrne finally filed the piece at RawStory.com.
After all of that hard work, a human rights group shared RAW's story with AP who eventually filed their own very familiar story using the work as originally unearthed by RAW. They've since admitted to being given RAW's article and using it as the starting point for their own work, which walks a dangerously close line towards plagarism.
But even as they now admit that their story originated with RAW's reporting, they still refuse to give credit where credit's due. They've now given several lame and still-changing reasons for failing to acknowledge the "oversight" including "we do not credit blogs" and later, "we only credit blogs we know."
Larisa writes about the matter at Huff Po here and here, and John Byrne wrote an article covering AP's comments and comparing both articles directly for RAW here.
Setting aside the fact that RAW STORY is NOT EVEN A BLOG --- apparently any independent news source which originates on the Internet is now considered a "blog" by some in the MSM...all the easier to dismiss them by, we suppose --- The BRAD BLOG is a blog and yet we find the practice of failing to give us due credit equally objectionable for the many stories we have broken which were later picked up by the MSM as well.
Though most "blogs" do not do the sort of original reporting that we do here, it's certainly harder to argue that we're not one --- what with the word "BLOG" in our name and all. And yet, I'm forced to ask: What the hell does the word "blog" have to do with anything anyway?
Journalism is journalism is journalism. The quality of the reporting and the journalism therein is what matters no matter the name given to the media originating the work.
The reason that all of this matters is not so that Larisa or RAW or even myself or The BRAD BLOG receives some form of personal adulation or ego stroke for our hard work.
So if not for the good of our own personal self-esteem, why does proper credit to such sources really matter?...
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