Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 16th Dec 2009 00:13 UTC
Gnome In the item we ran yesterday about GNOME and the GNU Project, one aspect got snowed under a little bit. It turns out a claim made in the iTWire article about the role a blog post by Miguel De Icaza was false, and even though the claim wasn't ours, I did repeat it, and therefore, should correct it too. I also need to offer apologies for not framing the opening of the article clear enough - had I framed it better, a lot of pointless discussion and name-calling could've been avoided.
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RE: Be very careful
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 16th Dec 2009 08:12 UTC in reply to "Be very careful"
Thom_Holwerda
Member since:
2005-06-29

Someone from the GNOME Foundation has made a counter claim - that is all you can say. Has this Esfahbod chap offered you incontrovertible proof that the post that led to Lucas Rocha's initial mail was something other than De Icaza's post? Do you have that proof? You may be needing it soon unless you retract your accusations about me.


This is an issue of trust. You provide no proof in your article about the claim - if you had, I'm sure you would've. I trust someone like Esfahbod, that much is true. However - people are free to make up their own minds. That's the whole point: in articles on OSNews, I state my own opinions. My readers are clever enough to agree or disagree with me, to make up their own minds about who to believe - your claim, or one of a noted GNOME developer.

I am free to state that I find Esfahbod's claim trustworthy, just as much as you are free not to.

you plagiarised it. The source was public and I had provided all the links but the proper thing to do was to link to my story, even if you wrote your own. You wanted to be a star.


My story was entirely based on posts made to public sources - in this case, blogs on PGO and emails to the Foundation list, a number of them which had no place in your article at all. You wrote a story based off the same sources - that's what happens. Are you seriously going to argue that if we were to both write about a Steve Jobs keynote, I'd be plagiarising you because you covered the same public content?

On top of that, as explained, my article wasn't supposed to focus around GNOME-GNU at all - but about the second half of my article. I apologise here for not framing that well.

Now someone from GNOME seems to be putting pressure on you and you don't appear to have the guts to stare them down. Or are you trying to suck up to them?


No, I am trying to be as honest as possible. If this story only had 5 comments, I wouldn't have cared. However, this story generated over 300 comments, and this means that it might have had negative consequences not based on actions of GNOME developers or Miguel, but based on MY presentation of it - including the claim about Miguel, which served as a major hot iron in the comments.

Contrary to many other bloggers, I like to be held accountable for my words, so if it turns out that I'm spreading nonsense (other than nonsense opinions of course) that can have negative effects, I'd like to offer apologies and clarify matters. I've done it before, and I'll do it again.

Develop some guts. Else stop calling yourself a journalist. The way you have handled this whole thing shows that you haven't a clue about journalism.


I'm not a journalist, I'm a blogger. On top of that, if "having a clue about journalism" means standing by claims even though you personally believe them to be nonsense, the I'd rather NOT have a clue about journalism.

Edited 2009-12-16 08:13 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 3

RE[2]: Be very careful
by ansidotsys on Wed 16th Dec 2009 09:40 in reply to "RE: Be very careful"
ansidotsys Member since:
2008-08-15

I'm not a journalist, I'm a blogger. On top of that, if "having a clue about journalism" means standing by claims even though you personally believe them to be nonsense, the I'd rather NOT have a clue about journalism.


Yeah, it's convenient to switch on the blogger switch when things get nasty isn't it. Again, from your so called "Clean Slate".

"OSNews is not Thom's blog

With just me doing the longer items, OSNews was moving dangerously close to just me spouting opinions, which is of course not desirable. That's why from the moment I started doing the longer items, I started a very strong push towards getting more dedicated editors on board, with opinions that differ from my own, so that they can bring balance to the site as a whole."

That sounds to me like you are trying to become editor of a few writers. Hell, you don't even call yourself a blogger on your Profile page:

"Title: Managing editor"

http://www.osnews.com/user/uid:5/

Reply Parent Score: 0

RE[3]: Be very careful
by Thom_Holwerda on Wed 16th Dec 2009 09:44 in reply to "RE[2]: Be very careful"
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Yeah, it's convenient to switch on the blogger switch when things get nasty isn't it.


Point me to ONE instance where I claim to be a journalist. ONE.

"Title: Managing editor"


Yup. Editor OF A BLOG.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: Be very careful
by chully on Wed 16th Dec 2009 11:45 in reply to "RE: Be very careful"
chully Member since:
2009-04-23

This is an issue of trust. You provide no proof in your article about the claim - if you had, I'm sure you would've. I trust someone like Esfahbod, that much is true. However - people are free to make up their own minds. That's the whole point: in articles on OSNews, I state my own opinions. My readers are clever enough to agree or disagree with me, to make up their own minds about who to believe - your claim, or one of a noted GNOME developer.


I do not have to provide any proof in my article - and your claim that I have to shows how ignorant you are. iTWire is a registered Australian company operating under Australian media laws and you can take us to court to show proof.

This is what you have written: "It turns out a claim made in the iTWire article about the role a blog post by Miguel De Icaza was false,"

That is potentially defamatory.

You can state your opinions but if you start calling me a liar then you had better show proof, else it may turn nasty.

I am free to state that I find Esfahbod's claim trustworthy, just as much as you are free not to.


You can state that he has denied my claim and give his designation to add weight to that. But if you say my claim is false, then you have to prove it. I have my own sources for my claims and we can match sources when we meet in court.

My story was entirely based on posts made to public sources - in this case, blogs on PGO and emails to the Foundation list, a number of them which had no place in your article at all. You wrote a story based off the same sources - that's what happens. Are you seriously going to argue that if we were to both write about a Steve Jobs keynote, I'd be plagiarising you because you covered the same public content?

On top of that, as explained, my article wasn't supposed to focus around GNOME-GNU at all - but about the second half of my article. I apologise here for not framing that well.


My story was the very first one and your post is startlingly similar. Additionally, you were careful not to link to my story because people would then have seen the similarities. I am not a fool to make a claim about plagiarism - I have seen people of your ilk for the last three decades.

I note that I am not the only person accusing you of plagiarism - you seem to have a history of doing this kind of thing.

No, I am trying to be as honest as possible. If this story only had 5 comments, I wouldn't have cared. However, this story generated over 300 comments, and this means that it might have had negative consequences not based on actions of GNOME developers or Miguel, but based on MY presentation of it - including the claim about Miguel, which served as a major hot iron in the comments.

Contrary to many other bloggers, I like to be held accountable for my words, so if it turns out that I'm spreading nonsense (other than nonsense opinions of course) that can have negative effects, I'd like to offer apologies and clarify matters. I've done it before, and I'll do it again.


You can do what you like. But when you call someone a liar, you need to have proof. If you'd rather have lawyers deal with this, that's your choice.

I'm not a journalist, I'm a blogger. On top of that, if "having a clue about journalism" means standing by claims even though you personally believe them to be nonsense, the I'd rather NOT have a clue about journalism.


Your title is managing editor - it is not blogger. If we go to court, you will have a big problem claiming that you have told the public who read this site that you are a blogger.

Sam Varghese

Reply Parent Score: -1

RE[3]: Be very careful
by SReilly on Wed 16th Dec 2009 12:36 in reply to "RE[2]: Be very careful"
SReilly Member since:
2006-12-28

Do you have any backup from ITWire or are you just bluffing? Frankly, you'd have a very hard time proving either plagiarism or defamation. Why don't you ask the army of lawyers at your disposal just how valid your claims are before you start running at the mouth.

Do yourself a favour. Suck up the embarrassment and crawl back under that stone you came out from.

Reply Parent Score: 5