What in the Whirled?

| | Comments (6) | TrackBacks (0)

OKDemocrat.com is a very old-school message board, mainly about struggles within the Oklahoma state and Tulsa County Democrat organizations, but also touching on broader local political issues. If you want to find out which local Democrats don't like each other and why, this is the place to go. Sometimes there are rumblings of stories and scandals weeks before they emerge in the mainstream.

The tone of the board is set by its proprietor, Rusty Goodman, a Vietnam veteran and long-time Democrat operative. Rusty and many of the regulars on the board are old-fashioned, pro-military, pro-traditional-values economic populists who are frustrated with the anti-military, anti-traditional-values liberals who dominate the state and county organizations and, according to the OKDemocrat regulars, are running the Democrat brand in Oklahoma into the ground.

(An aside: I don't understand my fellow Republicans who wish our side had a message board like this. It's fine for the Democrats to air their dirty laundry for our amusement; why should Republicans return the favor?)

All that to say that Rusty Goodman and the OKDemocrat board have had a run-in with Tulsa's monopoly daily newspaper. On February 9, a message was posted on OKDemocrat, apparently by Tulsa World web editor Jason Collington, saying that an OKDemocrat post "contains a copyrighted story from the Tulsa World and it is printed in full on your website, which is a violation of the copyright,' and that the story had been altered, which "makes your website subject to civil action."

The post apparently from Collington went on to ask for the deletion of the offending post "and any other posts that contain complete versions of our copyrighted stories."

The next sentence tickled me: "You are welcome to excerpt our stories and provide a link back to the story." It was six years ago this week that Tulsa World VP John Bair sent me, Chris Medlock, and two other websites a letter saying that we were not at all welcome to do that, that the act of linking and excerpting constituted a copyright violation. (The Whirled made no effort to follow through after the threat received national attention and ridicule.)

I confess I have sympathy for the World's position. I love it when someone excerpts and comments on a BatesLine post, with attribution and a link to the post. I don't like it when someone posts the entire entry, particularly if there's no attribution and no link.

A newspaper needs money to hire reporters, editors, and webmonkeys, and that money mainly comes from advertiser dollars. If you put a complete newspaper article on your website, the reader has no reason to go to the newspaper's website to read it, where his presence boosts readership numbers which in turn can be used to sell ads, so that the reporters and webmeisters can be paid. If you don't even provide a link or attribution, the reader doesn't even know where to go if he wants to read more stories of that sort. The right thing to do is to excerpt a few sentences to provide the context needed for your comments, cite the source, and provide a link to the source if it's on the web.

That said, it appears that the Whirled is taking an odd route to defending its copyright, using people on the content side of the house to pursue the matter, instead of someone on the legal or corporate side of the company. According to statements on OKDemocrat, the paper's state capitol reporter posted a request on Facebook for contact information for OKDemocrat. Web editor Collington submitted his message to an OKDemocrat feedback form and, when that got no response, posted to an OKDemocrat topic.

In reply, Goodman stated, "I have copies of over 30 stories that broke here first and a few days later showed up at the Tulsa World. Some of them almost word for word were printed in the Tulsa World from this site. Yet no credit was given to this site for breaking the news first."

I'll be watching OKDemocrat to see how all this works out. Should be interesting.

0 TrackBacks

Listed below are links to blogs that reference this entry: What in the Whirled?.

TrackBack URL for this entry: http://www.batesline.com/cgi-bin/mt/mt-tb.cgi/5911

6 Comments

...old-fashioned, pro-military, pro-traditional-values economic populists who are frustrated with the anti-military, anti-traditional-values liberals who dominate the state and county organizations and...are running the Democrat brand in Oklahoma into the ground.

I can't tell you how many people I've run into that fit this description to a "T." I think they're right: the hard-leftists that seem to be running the Democratic train are running their party into the ground. Andrew Jackson wouldn't recognize 'em. Shoot, John Kennedy probably wouldn't recognize 'em.

'Course, it's fair to say that Abraham Lincoln probably wouldn't recognize today's Republicans, either...

Anon said:

I'm with MotW.
A Democrat, in Oklahoma, and from your own description of Mr. Goodman, could be considered a liberal Republican. The side he/they tangle with is more of the national average Democrat, who is a liberal, at least socially. Sprinkle in a few Washington Democrat types, who are downright irritatingly liberal and the smoke rises.

You're right, though, why would Republicans want to do that to themselves, or for Democrats' entertainment.

The Whirled has a point, something their editorial board seldom can claim.
The cribbing from OKDem claim sounds about right, too.

This sould be getting entertaining any minute now.

The A Team said:

I'd say the nanny state, crony capitalist, corporate welfare queen, caviar conservative, chamber of commerce(corruption), publicly subsidized for private profit plutocrats who lead the Republiban party kleptocracy are doing a pretty good job of running the GOP brand into the ground.

There seem to be plenty of "nanny state, crony capitalist, corporate welfare queen, caviar conservative, chamber of commerce(corruption), publicly subsidized for private profit plutocrats" in both parties, but I'm happy to say there's a good deal of resistance to that way of thinking in the grassroots leadership of the Oklahoma Republican Party.

Anon Demo said:

The issue was mostly not the fact that the story was linked, I believe, it's that it was ALTERED to turn it into a partisan attack piece, with no change to the byline or mention that it was altered.

How is that okay, in any fashion? It's unethical to the extreme.

I think there's a little reading comprehension problem here. The fact that OKDemocrat linked the story wasn't a problem at all in this case. (It was a big problem six years ago.)

The World's web editor cited both the use of the entire story and its alteration as violations of the World's copyright. I don't think anyone here suggested the alterations were OK. I certainly didn't.

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on February 11, 2011 11:58 PM.

School election 2011 results for Tulsa County was the previous entry in this blog.

Tiffany Transcriptions website updated is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Contact

Feeds

Subscribe to feed Subscribe to this blog's feed:
Atom
RSS
[What is this?]