Old School Meal: Published!

I was happily enjoying a relaxing island vacation when I suddenly received a SMS from our friendly fabulous baker. Normally, I would have ignored an incoming text message, but since it wasn’t from anyone work-related, I read it. No harm right? Or so I thought!

After a few kan-cheong replies, I found out that my blog article was published on the Sunday Star. “Wow,” I thought. I need to get my hands on it to see for myself. Then it struck me that McCutie and I had left the papers at the restaurant when were out for dinner earlier – and this after an entire day waiting to get hold of the Sunday edition. Talk about having rotten luck. Dammit!

Luckily, McCutie brought along the office laptop (the poor sod had to work during the first day of our vacation). As luck would have it in situations like these, the Maxis 3G connection wasn’t strong enough and only GPRS connection was available. We fired up The Star Online site anyway and began searching. After some 20-minutes of searching at the speed of a kura-kura, we finally found it.


There it was in full glory. My review of Woo Lan Restaurant. I was genuinely happy for a moment. Actually scrap that. I was actually proud to see my comic being published (in colour!). McCutie was obviously happy too – kept on chanting “Ooh, I’m holidaying with a famous blogger“.

However minutes later, after reading the entire article, it dawn on me that I’ve been duped! Albeit being thankful to the writer for the free publicity given on the country’s most popular English-language daily and the attention it has garnered, I was rather taken aback at how it was blatantly ‘stolen‘ almost word-for-word right off my blog without any prior consent (written or verbal)! I mean, is this even legal? Can a publication publish any content that doesn’t belong to them without consent of the owner? Did I click on any pre-approved box that allows my blog contents to be printed automatically?

And even if it was legal to do so (which I’m SURE it isn’t), what ever happened to common courtesy. I would have said “yes,” in a heartbeat if they’ve asked for permission. This monkey can after all be a media whore darling if he wants to. At the risk of sounding ungrateful, I can’t help but feel like I’ve been bullied by the big boys. Sighs. Any one with similar experiences?

So, what’s the moral of the story? Never answer a call or SMS during your vacation. Better yet, leave the phone at home and enjoy yourself.

15 Responses to Old School Meal: Published!
  1. Life for Beginners
    March 30, 2009 | 11:33 pm

    Hmm. I didn’t manage to get a copy of that paper by the time McCutie sms-ed me so I assumed it was a write-up lah, not a wholesale copy-and-paste like this.

    It has happened to other bloggers too, some of my food blogger and lit-blogger friends. What they did was to write in and ask for an apology.

    Still, at least they credit-ed you, which means some publicity as opposed to some of my friends who were ripped off completely with no credit. Also, this happens all the time online too.. I have had content stolen regularly.

    Don’t feel too geram lah… Remember that NO ONE else can do these comic strips quite like you, and with your special wit to boot! :)


  2. Lyrical Lemongrass
    March 31, 2009 | 2:01 am

    When the column was handled by a different person, that person had the courtesy to write and ask for permission (which we readily gave). But when this Renita woman took over, she didn’t bother with permissions, so a number of us are pretty geram right now. Like in all cases, the big boys think they can bully the itsy bitsy kucing kurap. I HATE IT.

  3. fatboybakes
    March 31, 2009 | 2:07 am

    fear not, LFB, i saved a copy.
    yeah, this renita woman ah, dd the same thing to me. AND, to make things worse, misquoted me a bit, AND didnt put the LINK to my blog. ROLL ROLL EYES…

  4. Wandernut
    March 31, 2009 | 3:39 am

    You guys should complain la!
    What nerve of them to do this!
    So much for a journalist’s integrity.

  5. Selba
    March 31, 2009 | 5:52 am

    Hmmm…. at least you have a proof that it’s yours. Definitely should write a complain letter to the publisher.

  6. Bangsar-bAbE
    March 31, 2009 | 7:08 am

    Hmmmm…it just shows how blardy this Renita lady is. Actually, most reporters are these days! @_@

  7. "Joe" who is constantly craving
    March 31, 2009 | 9:02 am

    worse part is after the first time it happened i sent an email complaining, there was no reply!

    then i got another of my entry up on the Star again later on!..

    and in any case, the “free publicity” doesnt really help with the hits..

  8. thule a.k.a leo
    March 31, 2009 | 12:33 pm

    I think the girl just browse on food blogs and then decide to take those interesting ones without asking for consent from its owner.
    Anyway, I thought to myself when I read Metro Sunday…hmmm, this monkey became more famous than he already is…lol!!!
    hope you had fun there… be careful of monkey stalker

  9. CUMI & CIKI
    April 1, 2009 | 3:01 am

    alamak.. lets write and article on RENITA.. and STEALING BLOGS.. see if she posts it.. :P:P

  10. Nic (KHKL)
    April 1, 2009 | 5:00 am

    yeah, i oso wanna sms u but u din give me your number..hmmpphhh…give me next time when we go k, ya! ;D

  11. qwazymonkey
    April 2, 2009 | 4:11 pm

    Hey everyone, I didn't realise that this Renita lady is a serial copy-n-paste journalist. Actually, why's she even a journalist if all she does is just take other people's work and not credit it. OK at least she's credited mine but like Joe have said, there's hardly any difference with the "hit" parade. And I kinda like Cumi&Ciki's idea, why us "kucing kuraps" start blogging about her stealing our work. Expose the copy-cat!

    Now I'm actually more geram. Lemme go find out from some friends at The Star who this woman is.

  12. thenomadGourmand
    April 5, 2009 | 10:03 am

    this has been happening for quite some-time alrei, as in every week there would b a blog featured.(I read the Sun star every week)
    So far there has been diff reactions – cos some bloggers IMMEDIATELY post up on their blog rather PROUDly that their site is featured.
    but its true, she nvr ask 1st – in her mind she prob thinks that those she featured should send her TQ-gifts for the publicity!
    I think the traffic didnt increase cos the readers of the stars would hv just read that one article and that’s it.
    to be honest, (In my opinion laa..) bloggers spend so much time online that they prob read eveything online, so they read newsppr online too…
    newsppr readers wont go online n purposely search for ur blog to read..(oh dear tis msg is gettin too long..) i think u get my drift right?
    Anyways, hope Renita reads this post of urs n all its comments!

  13. qwazymonkey
    April 5, 2009 | 3:25 pm

    thenomadGourmand: Thanks for your ‘long’ comments. Haha. Well I just believe in common courtesy, which I think everyone of us should live be. It’s fine to borrow things, just ask. Not take and then expect it all to be ok. Cos it ain’t. But, I’m over it lah now. I’ll be the bigger monkey and rise above it all. Just hope it doesn’t happen again to me or anyone else in the future.

  14. babe_kl
    April 23, 2009 | 4:52 am

    i was the first blogger whom the previous journalist “stole” the contents from my blog to be published in the star. i wrote a piece of my mind on the blog. luckily the lady read about it and emailed me. i told her be courteous and ask for the bloggers permission if not inform us firsthand before springing us a surprise. thank goodness she kept to her words BUT that’s only informing that your article will be featured like tomorrow!

    it’s too bad she never inform renita about this.

  15. qwazymonkey
    April 23, 2009 | 4:02 pm

    babekl: Sorry to hear that you’ve pioneered the got-ripped-off club. I guess manners101 must be introduced as a subject for any journalistic studies.