Do you ever get the feeling that Tea Party Republicans see the phrase “Ignorance Is Bliss” as a Mission Statement?


Arianna Huffington thinks that her writers should be grateful for the exposure?

I stopped paying any attention to Arianna and Huffington Post over a year ago.  I have always felt that Arianna blows whichever way the wind or money blows!-Mem

Sat Apr 02, 2011 at 11:16 AM EDT

Why I'm Boycotting The Huffington Post, And I Hope You Will Too
by djtyg for Income Inequality Kos

As of late, thankfully, the issue of labor has once again come into the forefront of political discourse in this country.  As we watch the GOP declare their own political war against organized labor at all levels, the left has begun to stand up and fight for the right of employees to organize and collectively bargain.  The Huffington Post has been one of the blogs that has covered unions and the GOP extensively.

However, workers from The Huffington Post have gone on strike and Arianna Huffington has shown her own hypocrisy in this affair...

Imagine, for a moment, that at your workplace, you were doing your job-whatever it is-for free.  At first you didn't complain, because you enjoy the job and you like it when people see the fruits of your labor.  It feels good to get compliments.

But unfortunately, those compliments don't pay bills.  So you decide that you want to get paid.  And it turns out that all your "coworkers" want to get paid as well.  But your boss refuses, saying that the work you provide for free gets you great exposure, and you'll have the opportunity to be paid by another employer someday if you keep working for this company for free.  In the meantime your boss has just made a deal that gave them $315 million.

Most people would go on strike.  And that's what the bloggers at The Huffington Post decided to do.  Their demand is simple:  They want to be paid for their work.   They want to see money for the fruits of their labor, just like Arianna Huffington did when she sold her site to AOL for $315 million.
"Umbrella art publishing company" Visual Art Source (aka ArtScene), which had been contributing content to the Huffington Post gratis since 2010, has now declared a strike on the site and is refusing to furnish the site with further material.
Moreover, they're calling on other HuffPo contributors who've provided free material to join them in the strike. 
ArtScene and Visual Art Source publisher Bill Lasarow lays out the group's demands on Visual Art Source's Web site, writing, "First, a pay schedule must be proposed and steps initiated to implement it for all contributing writers and bloggers. Second, paid promotional material must no longer be posted alongside editorial content; a press release or exhibition catalogue essay is fundamentally different from editorial content and must be either segregated and indicated as such, or not published at all."
Lasarow adds, "I am also calling upon all others now contributing free content, particularly original content to the Huffington Post to also join us in this strike."
Lasarow and company's sudden unwillingness to accept exposure alone as payment for their efforts is understandable, given AOL's $315 million purchase of Huffington Post in February.
And HuffPo has, after all, famously relied on the kindness of perhaps over-generous contributors, some of whom might like a little payback now that the gravy's pouring in.
It sounds fair, right?  Arianna Huffington makes a mountain of cash off of your work, so you should get a piece of it, right?  And you'd think that a site that has shown story after story portraying a pro-union bias would be sympathetic to this issue.  Surely a progressive site like The Huffington Post believes in paying workers for their contributions, right?


When asked about the strike, Huffington decided to go all Marie Antoinette on the issue:
Arianna Huffington scoffed at a group of unpaid Huffington Post contributors that announced on Wednesday they would stop contributing content to the site, weeks after its $315 million sale to AOL was announced. Huffington, speaking alongside AOL chief Tim Armstrong at PaidContent’s 2011 Conference in New York on Thursday, dismissed the notion that all bloggers should be paid, given the wide platform HuffPo gives them.
She argued that blogging on the Huffington Post is equivalent to going on Rachel Maddow, Jon Stewart or the “Today” show to promote their ideas.
And, she said, there are plenty of people willing to take their place if they do.
“The idea of going on strike when no one really notices,” Huffington said. “Go ahead, go on strike.”
Yep, let them eat cake.

Even Kos himself pays his front pagers for their work.  He gives them fair pay and even health insurance for the work they put into this site.  And for good reason.  The front-pagers work very hard to put in quality work that gives the site a solid reputation for progressive activism.  Arianna Huffington makes way more money from her site than Markos does (unless Kos made $315 million for this site, which I strongly doubt).

She should not only pay her bloggers, but pay them damn well!

One of Arianna's justifications for not paying them is that she does have paid reporters, and says that bloggers don't do as much work.  It's reasonable to expect that reporters should be paid more as they are doing much of the leg work in getting stories reported.  However, the bloggers aren't saying they want to be paid as much as the reporters.  They're just saying they want to be paid.  That's completely reasonable, considering how much money Arianna makes off of their work.

So why boycott this site?  It's simple.  There is a picket line around it.  As a union-supporting liberal I know that we don't cross picket lines, even if that means we get inconvenienced.  When the workers at our grocery stores go on strike, we shop somewhere else because we tell stores that if they don't support their workers, we give our business to places that will.  The same for any business.  Because we stand up for ALL workers, not just a few.

Yet just as important, Arianna Huffington is dependent on the perception that she's a powerful progressive voice.  While a strike isn't likely to cost her any money, when word gets out that she's a hypocrite who can't practice what she and her site preaches, she will begin to lose clout.  It will be then, and only then that she does the right thing and pays her bloggers.

Also, as their site traffic drops, so will the ad revenue.  So it's dependent on us to help the bloggers at that site by both staying away from it and keeping the progressive heat on Arianna Huffington.

So until The Huffington Post starts paying their bloggers for the work that Arianna Huffington gleefully makes millions off of, they will no longer get any business from me.


  1. I quit going there several months ago, when the stories got old and weren't replaced daily. I had lots of emails from them requesting my services at local events...all for free. It was enticing, but I have a life.

  2. Sally I have a problem with her for many reason but one being that she talks out of both sides of her mouth. Also she is really good friends with NEWT and his newest wife. That in itself is enough for me to not trust her!

  3. Stay away from HP? Not a problem. I'm sick of seeing everything Palin does in print as if it's an earth-shattering revelation and HP is one of the biggest offenders. Also, after commenting there for two years, suddenly comments that are no different from others I've posted are being censored. If she wants to cater to the RWNJ's she's got a long way to go but it won't be with help from many of us who feel the same as you, Mem.

  4. AKRNC I started getting censored about a year ago because I started posting then about Arianna talking out of both sides of her mouth. I guess she didn't like that:)


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