Posted on | December 28, 2012 | 60 Comments
Back in the Day: Andrew Breitbart was a guest on Glenn Beck’s Fox News show
In April 2011, Matthew Boyle of the Daily Caller reported that Glenn Beck had been accused of using bloggers’ content without attribution:
Mandy Nagy, a conservative blogger known online as Liberty Chick, spent untold hours last fall creating a chart that tracks left-wing billionaire George Soros’s influence over media organizations, only to see it appear, in its exact form and without any attribution, on Beck’s famous chalkboard. “We were laughing that he went to all the trouble of [recreating] the visual on the blackboard,” Nagy said, not sounding entirely amused.
John Sexton, who blogs at VerumSerum.com, has provided Beck with material several times, and has sometimes received credit for it. But in several other cases, Sexton says, “he’s used our stuff without any hat tip at all. I don’t understand that.” According to Sexton, in one instance even famously liberal CBS News credited VerumSerum.com for content it used, while Beck, who lifted the same material, did not.
Pamela Geller of AtlasShrugs.com recalls watching Beck use a story she wrote about campaign contributions the Obama campaign received from donors in Gaza. Many other publications referred to the story, Geller says, but only Beck refused to give her credit for it.
“I went through thousands of pages of FEC documents and it was an enormous task to uncover the campaign contributions from Gaza, a Hamas-controlled area, to President Obama,” Geller says. “It’s in my book and it wasn’t a secret that I wrote the story. I don’t know how to describe such outrageous and proud thievery. I like his work, but he’s a thief.”
You can read the whole thing. Let’s be clear that Glenn Beck is certainly not the only broadcaster or journalist who has been accused of failing to give adequate credit to the work of others, and bloggers especially get used to being shortchanged by the big shots.
That April 2011 article, however, was sort of an Empire Strikes Back episode in what became a widespread backlash against Beck after he had a falling-out with Andrew Breitbart. And this is relevant now because, as I reported Christmas Eve, “people are telling me that it was Glenn Beck who wanted to hire Dana Loesch away from Breitbart.com,” and Dana has filed a federal lawsuit against Breitbart.com.
Let’s be clear (a) there’s a whole lot of backstory to this, which may never be entirely known, and (b) I cannot verify that there were actually any negotiations between Dana and Beck — it’s just what “people are telling me.” Obviously the plaintiff in a lawsuit can’t talk about it, and nobody at either Breitbart.com or Beck’s operation has said a word about it. Then again, I haven’t gotten any angry e-mails denying it, so . . .
In order to understand why Breitbart.com might take especial umbrage at the idea of Dana Loesch leaving to join Glenn Beck’s rival New Media operation, it helps to listen to a podcast interview Andrew Breitbart recorded in December 2011 with Stephen K. Bannon.
Because Bannon is now executive chairman of Breitbart.com, this is a very important interview. Becca J. Lower and Danielle Saul have provided a full transcript, which I briefly excerpt here:
Breitbart: [T]here are a lot of Beck supporters. In the past, Beck has made a lot of mistakes and his supporters come out and try to defend him, because Beck is a coward and will not defend himself when he makes a mistake or lies about a person or steals content –
Bannon: Hold on, I want to go back over this: you’re saying that Glenn Beck’s a coward, Glenn Beck’s a liar, and you’re saying that Glenn Beck steals material from people?
Breitbart: Oh yes, and this is well-documented. And whenever he does it, he never answers to the charges. He’s a coward. He won’t have me on the radio show, he won’t have himself [and] me on GBTV, refused to have me on Fox when he threw me under the bus. During the Sherrod thing, I asked to be on TV or radio to explain why he had it wrong. Months later, we found out why he wouldn’t have me on is because he lied to his audience on television that he didn’t do the Sherrod story. . . . In order to rectify the situation, he went on TV and tried to pretend like he was above the fray and told O’Reilly, to his face, a lie . . .
He also has historically been found to take countless bloggers’ content, to turn it into book gold, to turn it into chalkboard gold . . .He will not answer to the charges, and his minions online like to defend him. . . .
- Dec. 24: Memo From the National Affairs Desk: Chains Rattling, and Who’s That Ghost?
- Dec. 22: Newsroom Management Training Video
- Dec. 21: Dana Loesch, Indentured Servant?