Apple Pie: As American As...Plagiarism?

What started out as a fairly routine morning ended up lighting a fire under my proverbial rear end.

As a journalism graduate, there are few things that really anger me more than plagiarism. Someone taking something you worked like crazy on is the ultimate wrong in the writing world, and there are people out there who will try to make you believe that you shouldn't have made it available for the world to see if you didn't want it stolen.

Case in point: Judith Griggs. For those of you that don't know the story, Judith, the editor of Cooks Source magazine, published an apple pie recipe by Monica Gaudio in their magazine without Monica's permission. Monica didn't know about it until a friend e-mailed her to tell her about it. Monica contacted the magazine and asked that they print and publish an apology on the web and in the magazine and donate $130 to the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

The gist of Judith's reply is this: "Honestly, Monica, the web is considered 'public domain' and you should be happy we didn't 'lift' your whole article and put someone else's name on it...We put some time into rewrites, you should compensate me!" (The full e-mail from Judith can be found here.) 

The magazine requires a subscription, and they are making money off of subscriptions and advertisements, which also means they are making money off of Monica's hard work. Now they are telling her that she basically deserved to have the article stolen because she posted it on a "public domain." While I agree that the internet is considered a "public domain," I do not agree that Judith thinks she can steal whatever she wants for whenever she wants it. Then to add insult to injury, Judith had the balls to tell Monica she should be paid for the time she spent editing her recipe! Un-freaking-believable.

If someone had told me that my blog posts were published without my knowledge in a magazine that is making money, I would be livid. The first person I would contact would be my lawyer - I wouldn't even wait for an explanation, or for some Judith-esque idiot to tell me I deserve it.

What makes me smile about this whole situation is the glorious Food Network. Apparently, several of the recipes seen in Cooks Source are also available for viewing on FN is now doing extensive research into the source of these recipes. If FN sniffs out anything that isn't kosher, I can't wait for their legal team to kick the proverbial apple pie right out of Judith Griggs and her crappy magazine. 

On their Facebook page, Judith wrote the following:
"Hi Folks!

Well, here I am with egg on my face! I did apologise to Monica via email, but aparently it wasnt enough for her. To all of you, thank you for your interest in Cooks Source and Again, to Monica, I am sorry -- my bad!
You did find a way to get your "pound of flesh..." we used to have 110 "friends," we now have 1,870... wow!

Best to all, Judith"

My response to that:
"Dear Judith, 

Please write more on here, so we can edit it and you can pay us all.

Much appreciation."

For those of you who aren't familiar with how Facebook pages work, you have to "like" or "become a fan" of a page you want to write on. It's just like friending someone else, you can't write on their wall until you become their friend. So, for Judith to say their fan base went up by that much, it really only means that people were pissed off enough to like them so they could say something hateful about her antics. I had to like the magazine in order to comment, and I can tell you, I will be unliking it when I am finished with this post. 

As for you, Judith Griggs, your name is now in history. I have a Bachelors of Science degree from Illinois State University, and I wouldn't even need it to know that what you did is wrong. Good luck finding a job from here on out.

Image courtesy of THANK YOU!


  1. Hi I'm Mary's mom (Adventures in Mommyhood) and I love you blog! This Judith woman is a disgrace! Thank you for putting this out there. I love it!

  2. Hi Barb!

    Thanks for reading! Your daughter's blog is hysterical, so I'm really glad I got to be friends with her.

    Thanks again for taking some time to comment! I agree, Judith needs a good swift kick in the behind.

    Have a great weekend!

  3. (first of all I know I commented on here but for some reason it didn't go through. Anywho, all I have to say is WOW! She really is a piece of work! Great Blog Kristen!!


Post a Comment

Popular Posts