By Sam Foster
I see the blogs are abuzz with news of Glenn Beck's content theft.
A number of conservative activists and bloggers say they’re furious at media magnate Glenn Beck for what they call content theft. Over the past several years, Beck has relied on video, audio and written content from others to fill his radio and television shows, as well as his websites. Often he has credited his fellow conservatives for their work. Yet in many other instances say dozens of conservative journalists who spoke to The Daily Caller, he has not, often taking elaborate steps to cloak the origins of the material.
Jimmie at Sundries Shack was a victim and he opines:
Though the author didn’t contact me, I’ve had a post stolen by Beck as well. The only attribution I got was a context-free link on his web page, which Beck’s staff felt was appropriate. That was more than I expected, actually — I’d heard plenty of stories from other bloggers about Beck — and I was sure to thank him for the little credit he did give me. What else was there to do? Beck is a big media guy, which means he pretty much gets to do what he wants. Out here in the world of new media, the first law is the Law of the Jungle, and, as Jeff Dunetz notes with several personal examples, my experience was far from unique.
At least Jimmie was linked at GlennBeck.com, we never received any such linkage ourselves. RightKlik and I have also been victimized by Glenn Beck content theft. Last July, Left Coast Rebel featured a story about a scurrilous video made by Think Progress. Our work forced a retraction at Think Progress. We obtained our own thread at memeorandum and were linked by a number of large blogs.
The next day, Glenn Beck did a segment using the content and meme we featured:
Stacy McCain points out that the blame might not fall specifically on Glenn Beck. However, though it appears that we were victimized, I really couldn't care less and ultimately don't understand the outrage. TV just doesn't make a good venue for hat tipping left and right. I've never heard him attribute to the NYT, Washington Post, LA Times, WSJ, etc..., but I'm sure that he gets material there as well. Even though I love bloggers and do trust well-researched articles, I'd be skeptical of any news host who was regurgitating so much content off the internet. I mean, you just can't believe everything on the internet *Cough Alaska liberal Bloggers Cough*
So Glenn, you are absolved as far as I'm concerned.
But, if there is any doubt that attribution is boring, it doesn't seem so over the radio. Contrast Beck to Rush Limbaugh who is pretty good about attribution, although he never seems to credit Robert Stacy McCain. Rush did credit Bungalo Bill and Left Coast Rebel online before.
Quite frankly, I see my content theft from Beck as a badge of honor. Especially since Glenn Beck seems to have been using content from some really great blogs and apparently we were a equally great in having our own content lifted. Like a link from Media Matters.
Commenters seem to agree with my position, that attribution from Beck is small potatoes.
I started doing this purely to do my part in waking people up. To educate people in what little I have been able to learn from studying and to learn more myself. IF someone like Rush or Glenn Beck lifted content from us (and I have wondered before) then super duper. That is why I DO it.
I think the fact that Glenn Beck or whomever among his staff is lifting information from conservative bloggers is a good sign. Think about it, this is proof that Beck is paying attention to bloggers and thinks that we're important and doing a great service in educating others. More power to him and his staff.
John Points out:
Are we not all Patriots working towards Freedom?!
However, I understand why many bloggers, trying to make a living blogging are interested in getting credit. I myself do this as a hobby, others for their livelihood. So, for my part, I don't mind not getting a shout out on Beck's TV show. But, I wouldn't complain if I did.