Did you see that movie Inkheart? In it, a man reads a fairy tale book out loud, and brings its characters, namely the villain, to life. Gives new meaning to the word ‘literally’ doesn’t it? This nice fantasy fiction is adapted from a book series of the same name.
Well guess what: apparently villains do live amongst us.
As Monica, a blogger and blog network owner, learned 2 weeks ago. On election day we were all concerned about those we were sending to Washington, DC to MAKE our laws, when Monica wrestled with someone who was busy BREAKING the law.
Her self-published article, housed on a domain she owned, had been lifted in its entirety and printed in a small Massachusetts magazine with a byline, without her knowledge or permission. Furthermore, when she investigated this encroachment, she was treated to a scolding by the perpetrators’ Editor, Judith Griggs:
But honestly Monica, the web is considered “public domain” and you should be happy we just didn’t “lift” your whole article and put someone else’s name on it! … but you as a professional should know that the article we used written by you was in very bad need of editing, and is much better now than was originally … We put some time into rewrites, you should compensate me! I never charge young writers for advice or rewriting poorly written pieces, and have many who write for me… ALWAYS for free!
YOU SHOULD PAY ME, she says. :::OPINION ALERT:::
It reminds you of the babbling rants of cartoon, comic book, and action-adventure film villains, right? As I tweeted last night, you could almost fill in the end of her rant with “and I’ll steal ANOTHER article, and ANOTHER blog, and ANOTHER poetry anthology! The print magazine world will be minnnnnnnneeee!” complete with maniacal laughter and waving of a trigger switch for the “hero” who is strapped to some CONTRAPTION OF DOOM.
She seemed to assume Monica, who tweets at @illadore, was a “young writer” and proceeded to give her free advice for a presumably long fruitful career of providing free editorial copy for all and sundry.
I understand that in recent times beginning with Enron and proceeding to present day with the convict Navy Vet lobbyist who pocketed $100m, we are uncovering corruption on every level of business. But even these corrupt types try to appear contrite or innocent to the public. This super villain speech-making? Revolutionary, to say the least. Judith Griggs (shall we name her Griggthor?) displayed a complete disregard for decency, morality, ethics, law, and even common sense. She seemed bent on achieving her goal of not being challenged or questioned ever again. I have to admit to being a little excited to see whose crazy we will be gifted with next.
It is also confirmation that business, indeed, IS personal.
Personally dumb, personally erratic, personally sharp, personally fair, and personally justified. Monica’s reaction was to display her disbelief at the NERVE of this editor to — none other than the “public domain” WWWeb. And in response, a tumbling wave of sympathetic and proactive readers, bloggers, vloggers, tweeters, reporters, newscasters and facebookers chipped in to scold Griggthor right back.
In song // In rant // In news // In satire // In blog post // In animation // On Twitter // the consensus (in which I include myself) seems to be: Griggthor: it is NOT ok, you will NOT get away with it, your plan HAS backfired, and you are in for QUITE a lesson.