Writer Monica Gaudio recently discovered that an article written by her back in 2005 was published as part of Cooks Source Magazine’s August 2010 issue—without her permission. When Ms. Gaudio asked compensation for her content, magazine editor Judith Griggs said that Monica ought to pay her.
Griggs replied that the plagiarism was “my bad” (in quotation marks). Yet she also asserted that “the web is considered ‘public domain’ and [Monica] should be happy we just didn’t ‘lift’ [the] article and put someone else’s name on it!” The editor even pointed out that she modified Gaudio’s article, making it “much better now than was originally [sic]” and that “We put some time into rewrites, you should compensate me!”
Reaction online was overwhelmingly negative, as Monica’s story started spreading. The Cooks Source Magazine Facebook page has seen an increase in the number of likes. But people only liked the page to post messages bashing Judith Griggs and the magazine. “Yes, we all read your back-handed apology. This is all that you deserve, Judy. Also, please be more consious of your excessive use of unecessary quotation marks [sic]” writes Christopher Jeffy.
The magazine’s reputation online has clearly taken a hit, while Judith Griggs is now the target for online abuse and scorn. At least three people have started impersonating her on Facebook, portraying her as a serial plagiarist with no understanding of the “public domain”.