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From:ext_324364
Date:November 17th, 2010 06:55 am (UTC)

Thank You, Monica - Part I

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Monica,

Thank you for your grace, professionalism and determination in handling this theft of your intellectual property. You are not a "meanie". You are an outstanding example for us all.

The following is a letter I sent to Judith Griggs:

Ms. Griggs,

I have been following the recent events regarding you and your magazine, Cooks Source, with interest for the past few weeks. At first, I was amused by your apparent cluelessness regarding copyright law and your haughty behavior. More recently, I have become appalled at your hubris, ignorance and complete lack of character. Not only do you refuse to take responsibility for your reprehensible actions, you now have the audacity to blame the victim.

Monica Gaudio was not the cause of your problems. The cause of your problems was the criminal enterprise that you called, “Cooks Source.” Yes, I said criminal enterprise! There is no other term that describes a business strategy that uses stolen content to enrich a publisher of a magazine. You have brazenly and unrepentantly engaged in a consistent pattern of purloining copyrighted articles and publishing them without permission of the authors or providing compensation to the same. “Lifting” Ms. Gaudio’s article was not an isolated instance. There have been over 160 documented instances in which you have taken copyrighted articles from the Internet and published them in your magazine. I am sure that you received permission to reproduce these articles from very few of the authors. Indeed, it has been reported that National Public Radio has sent you a cease and desist letter and the Food Network is investigating your theft of articles they originally published. Don’t be surprised to see an onslaught of letters from attorneys in the coming weeks.

You are delusional if you truly believe that your conduct is “helping people.” You have preyed upon authors, photographers and other providers who work very hard to produce their content. Rather than compensate these content providers fairly, you have consciously chosen to steal their work; depriving them of the income deserved for their hard work. I would certainly hope that you would not think it your right to steal a product from a store’s shelves. Why then would you think it right to steal another’s intellectual property for your own profit?

You have also preyed upon your advertisers and readers. Your advertisers deserve to be associated with an honorable and honest publication. Instead, you have tarnished their good names by including them in your criminal enterprise. Your readers deserve original content or content in which the authors have been fairly compensated and credited. You have provided neither. Instead, you seem to be an advocate of slavery – expecting others to work for you for free so that you may profit.

There are no excuses for your consistent pattern of criminal activities. You have not even suffered the sanctions you so richly deserve. It appears that you will only lose your so-called magazine. Other thieves would most certainly be looking at an extended stay in their local penitentiary.

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