Now it’s MY turn for a “clarification”…

Oy vey. What a spectacular, disturbing last two days it’s been. Never in a million years did I think I’d be at the epicenter of a plagiarism scandal apparently involving the darling of the young adult (YA) book world. Never in a million years did I think I’d have to defend myself as the victim. But as they say, truth is stranger than fiction.

By now most of you have read my post, B*tch stole my content! Plagiarism: How to Deal with a Thief, and B of Beautifully Invisible’s post, I Think We’ve Been Plagiarized… Sort of: The Story of the Content Thief. And many of you have read (and I’m finally, and only just now actually mentioning the name of the plagiarist here), the “apology” and “clarification” posts by Kristi of The Story Siren that are so vague people in the YA blogging world have had to tweet each other to find out exactly what the hey happened.

What did happen?

Let’s clear that up right now: PLAGIARISM happened.

She lifted content from our sites, reworked it, and passed it off as her own. She didn’t just “borrow” the format of a page, but reworked more than six articles on blogging, not books (the telltale sign). There was no “inspired by,” no link back, no permission asked, no nothing. SHE stole from US. That’s the clarification she omitted that you all are looking for.

Note: B and I would never make this most unholy accusation if we weren’t positive of it. If all the evidence offered in our original posts isn’t sufficient, you should read B’s latest post, where she breaks it down even more: A Tale of Plagiarism Continued: Clarification of The Story Siren’s Clarification.

To the people who are defending Kristi and skewering, us, the victims…

Beautifully Invisible and I did not name her on Twitter—or at all. Your book blogging community did. They put the situation out there three months after it actually happened.

We did not create any hashtags related to her. Your book blogging community did. We do not condone bullying (I have blogged about that very topic) and we would never take such a petulant approach toward a very serious matter. Neither of us needs an army to legitimize our claims.

We had no idea she was this big deal book blogger since our realm is fashion blogging. Comments I’ve seen about us wanting traffic and views out of this is ridiculous. If that were the case WE would have blown the lid off when it happened in January. All we knew is that she was someone who had stolen our work.

Along the same lines, saying that we cooked this up because we are jealous of someone we never even knew is absolute idiocy of the highest order. Now that Kristi is intimately familiar with the concept of IP addresses, I would defy her to find an instance where either of us ever visited her site before we made the discovery in January. We never have.

And in my world, jealousy is a wasted emotion. People who are jealous are usually unhappy with their lives. I am neither jealous nor unhappy.

To all of you who have commented: What’s the big deal? Why are they taking this so seriously? Let’s see your reaction when the posts you have worked on for hours are stolen, altered, and someone else is getting credit, traffic, and ad dollars for your work. Shame on all of you who think that protecting intellectual property isn’t serious or worthwhile. Why do you think you can’t download from iTunes once and share the song with the world for free? Because those melodies and lyrics are the livelihood of artists. Of course, any of you who want to spin your wheels and build up someone else’s reputation or line someone else’s pockets as a result…be my guest.

To all of you who have commented: She just made a mistake. It’s OK. Yes, she did make a mistake—a glaring, horrendous error in judgment when she decided to come over to our blogs, study them, then rework the content and publish it on hers. BIG MISTAKE. HUGE. Which is why we had no choice but to confront her about it.

What has been particularly galling is her inability to actually 100% own this “mistake.” As you can see from her first non-apology posted April 23, 2012, we were never mentioned. She supposedly apologized to her readers, but not us, the bloggers she plagiarized. In her “clarification” posted April 24, 2012, she wrote:

“To Grit and Glamour and Beautifully Invisible, I extend my deepest apologies. Please do not judge the book blogging community by my mistakes.”

Please do not judge the book blogging community? Does she really think that’s what I’m thinking about? No offense, but why would we even care about the book blogging community? It’s a weak apology at best. But to tell you the truth, I didn’t expect anything better than that.

To all of you who have commented: They just regurgitated how-to’s from the Internet. We are well aware that there are all kinds of how-to-blog-better articles out there. Let me set the record straight on this: ours were not regurgitations, but our own, authentic, original (and apparently covetable) posts. We spent hours on them.

To have people discredit our time, energy and original work as an excuse in defending her is highly offensive. No matter how you slice it, the work was ours, not hers—or anybody else’s.

To all of you who have commented: It’s one-sided. It’s a witch hunt. Uh, no and no—or at least, B and I are not the ones on the witch hunt. It has never been one-sided. We didn’t just arbitrarily make a claim. We confronted her about it. And she responded to us and to you all with every I was subliminally inspired/it was an accident/unintentional excuse in the book. And then she had the audacity to lie about her actions, and we showed you the proof.

We have never been on a witch hunt—just a hunt for the truth and a genuine and sincere apology. You should note that she’s never denied the accusations (uh, wouldn’t YOU if you were INNOCENT?), but still dances around the truth in her “clarification” on April 24:

“When I first received the allegations of plagiarism, I was presented with the information and could not deny the facts. While the content was not identical the subject matter was. It was a confusion of inspiration and plagiarism on my part. I am not denying my actions. I was in the wrong.”

Some commenters on other blogs have indicated that she should be reported to publishers, and some also said that we should be the ones to do it.  Now THAT is a witch hunt. I have no intention of reporting anyone. I could care less if she keeps blogging or not, whether she’s blacklisted by the book blogging community or publishers. I only care if she steals my content. Clearly, that’s not going to happen again.

To all of you who think we don’t fully understand copyrights and plagiarism: I want you to know that I am a hobby blogger. This is not my full-time job. You know what my “real” job is? I’m a Web writer and editor, a content developer—not a “wanna-be writer,” not someone with aspirations—but a bonafide, paid writer.

Tweeting with someone yesterday, I noted that the ultimate insult is that people think I do not know how all this plagiarism stuff works because—gasp!—I’m just a fashion blogger. 

I’m not just a fashion blogger. I have a Master’s Degree in English/Technical and Professional Writing, and I have published in magazines, papers, and online. I KNOW THE RULES OF WRITING. I KNOW WHAT PLAGIARISM IS.

I would never, ever pass someone’s work off as my own, because my voice and integrity are not only all I have as a writer, to do something like that would end my career, and my income. I resent having my name dragged through the mud because of a situation I did not bring upon myself.

To all of you who thought I was calling Kristi names because of my “B*tch stole my content…” title: You obviously didn’t read all the way through and see that at the bottom of that post, I properly attributed the “B*tch stole my” saying to the tongue-in-cheek E! Fashion Police segment, B*tch Stole My Look!  No one is actually calling anyone any names, on the show or in my post. It’s an expression used in fashion and entertainment.


To Kristi:

So you made a “mistake” and apologized. We know you will never write: To Grit and Glamour and Beautifully Invisible, I am truly sorry for plagiarizing your content. It’s pretty clear in your statement on April 24 that the only person you are sorry for is you, because you’ve tarnished your reputation as a “leader”:

“I am truly sorry for all the trouble that this has caused the book blogging community. That’s my biggest regret. You gave me your respect and I let you down. I took a role as a leader and I didn’t take my actions into account as it would reflect on the community as a whole. For that I am truly sorry.

…I know that I have disappointed many of you. That is heartbreaking to me. I am still the same person that you have come to know through the years. I just really screwed up.”

Not “truly sorry” for plagiarism, but “truly sorry…for all the trouble that this has caused.” Fine. Extend us your “deepest apologies.” Whatever. The damage, as you well know, is done.

You know what would have been refreshing? For you to tell your followers that slandering us, that hurling wild accusations at us because they are hurt and disappointed is not the way this should be handled. I hope you know that when all this hit Twitter and beyond, B and I were the ones who let people know that cyber-bullying—via hashtag or any other way—is wrong. Uh, that’s a defense on your behalf. We never started it or participated in any name calling or spread any unfounded accusations.

It would have been nice if instead of only doing your own reputation damage control, you had extended us the same courtesy and communicated to your followers that WE are not the ones at fault here, and we do not deserve to be attacked any more than you do. 

Would have been nice. But again, the damage—to all parties involved—is done.

Being that you’re bookish, I’ll close with an all-time favorite quote from Shakespeare’s Hamlet:

Comments

  1. says

    I FREAKING LOVE YOU!

    Thank you SO much for putting this all out there, may I co-sign please?!

    As you know, my mind has been elsewhere the past week and dealing with a family loss, so I am following bits and pieces of the chaos. I got a good sense of how crazy this whole thing has become when I started to receive HATE MAIL from Kristi’s fans on Tuesday night, but reading the comments that continue to crucify us while defending her just leave me cold.

    Co-Sign this post and back YOU up 10000000%
    Beautifully Invisible’s latest post: A Tale of Plagiarism Continued: Clarification of The Story Siren’s ClarificationMy Profile

    • says

      Darling friends.
      You know what`s a b*tch? Accountability. Hey yes. I love that you place it where it belongs.

      I am sorry this happened to you both, as you know I respect and love you both tremendously, as the fierce and talented writers and warm hearted people that you both are. Thank you for standing up for your selves with such spunk and grace. That is leading by example. And thank you for the bookish remark, I admit I am still giggeling.

      Now, I hope this all fades away soon so that you guys can blog in peace.
      Sending you both much love from Oslo!

      ps, B, ljubavi, I still can`t access your site from my pc, but am getting a new one and will shower you with comments then.
      Anika’s latest post: Love.My Profile

    • says

      B, we’ve been in it this blogging together for a long time. Thanks for your brilliant detective work, for your passion, for your courage, and for your kindness. How funny that more than a year ago, I named you my top blogger…see, I knew even back then, that you are DA BOMB.

      Big love to you my dear. And one day, we meet IRL for cocktails, tawdry tales, and trying on each other’s rings.

  2. says

    I just wanted to let you know that there are many of us in the book blogging (and even the YA book blogging) community who are with you. We will not be visiting The Story Siren anymore. We will not be participating in her memes and we are NOT ok with what she has done. I try to teach my students about the perils (and the lack of morals) that go hand in hand with plagiarism and I am DISGUSTED to see yet another person in YA be defended for partaking in STEALING. There are no circumstances where this is ok and the absolute LEAST that Kristi could do is provide you with a sincere apology.

    Since she will not do it, perhaps I might. I am sorry you had to go through this, I am sorry that MY community was a part of this and I am sorry that there are people who vilify the victims and canonize the thief.
    Zabet Reading’s latest post: Book Review: Amplified by Tara KellyMy Profile

      • says

        I’m with @Jake The Girl.
        Even if I’m really new to the book blogging community. I also commented on Kristi’s “Clarification” letting her know my feelings.

        I’m sorry this happened to B and you both. I hate plagiarism and I loved loved Kristi’s post about it, which she has taken down. But I agree with everything you posted here, and I’m ashamed of the way our community has responded and started attacking you both. I completely support you both, YOU are the victims. I also know that if that were ever to happen to a rookie blogger like me, people wouldn’t be so eager to just accept what happened and move on.

        I also hope Kristi learns from this, because YES she DID affect all of our community, not only her site. We’re being seeing as a bunch of little kids eager for more fights or like some are putting it ‘for the queen bee to go down.”

        *-*
        Again, I apologize for all the trouble our community has caused to you both. I can’t say I’m choosing a side because this is not a situation in which you can side with one or the other, there’s just the truth-facts, thievery and the person who committed them and the victims, and since it’s common sense that all those facts are bad ones it is only obvious to try to support the victim. I wish she had apologized to you guys. But well.

        Best wishes :)
        -since I can’t tell you happy book reading- hehehe
        *Alba
        Alba @BookPics’s latest post: -reaction/review- The Mockingbirds by Daisy WhitneyMy Profile

    • says

      Wholeheartedly agree! I, too, will no longer participate in her memes, visit her site, or participate in her reading challenge. I’m sorry that you all have been subjected to hate mail. I’ve never been more disappointed in members of the community I’m usually proud to belong to.
      Marla @ Starting the Next Chapter’s latest post: Review – HemlockMy Profile

    • says

      I couldn’t agree more. I am a member of the book blogging community and am not only extremely sorry that you had to go through this but can certainly empathize with you – I had a very similar situation happen about a year or so ago. I think that you were absolutely right in standing up for yourselves and did it in a classy way.
      dolleygurl’s latest post: Guest Post by M.G. ScarsbrookMy Profile

    • says

      ^ This comment is killing me!

      I read both your posts on this situation and you’ve handled yourself really well. Very classy and presented pretty damning evidence. I imagine this has been a really frustrating process but hopefully writing about it and making people aware of what a huge deal it is will deter others from plagiarizing in the future. So that could be the silver lining to this mess.

      Em K
      Em K’s latest post: above zeroMy Profile

  3. Julia says

    I love the way you handled this. (As well as Beautifully Invisible) Really sorry it you two had to experience all this crap. My mind is blown that you’re receiving mean e-mails and responses.

    Totally going to start blog stalking you two now. This is all a hot mess, but at least I found two awesome fashion blogs in the midst of it!

  4. says

    I have been following the brouhaha over the last few days since Kristi’s name came out as the PLAGIARIZER (just so we’re clear, because that’s what she is) and I seriously CANNOT believe that people have been coming after you and B and accusing you of making this up! I mean, anyone who has read either your or B’s previous articles on the matter cannot even claim to be the least bit confused about what happened (the facts are all there, clear as day!). She stole your content and claimed it as her own, i.e. SHE PLAGIARIZED. I think you both have been handling it as gracefully as you can! I don’t know if it was just the particular place that I went to school, but the concept of plagiarism was drilled into us at a young age. Whether you unknowingly or knowingly claim someone else’s content as your own, you are PLAGIARIZING, and that is NOT OKAY. I’m sorry that you have to defend yourself in this situation, when really it’s Kristi who needs to own up to her huge mistake and apologize to you and B.
    Nnenna’s latest post: Brooklyn Flea Photo DiaryMy Profile

    • says

      Hi Nnenna, thanks so much for sharing your thoughts!

      This is so true:

      “Whether you unknowingly or knowingly claim someone else’s content as your own, you are PLAGIARIZING, and that is NOT OKAY.”

      Amen.

  5. says

    Wahhhhhhhhh V!!! She done messed with the wrong gal dude! How do you call plagiarism a “mistake” if it was repeated 6,7,8, 9, 10 times??? Y’all discovered her shadiness, but can you imagine who else she’s lifted from? Beautifully written babe…succinct enought to sucka-punch her ass right outta the game! Kinda ironic she chose you…does she know who YOU are?? Word!

    xo-Julie
    Peace. Love. LOL!

    Haute Khuuture.com

    Julie Khuu’s latest post: 5 Days of Giveaways: Day 5…The FINALE!My Profile

    • says

      GAH, you write the BESTEST comments, doll! I crack up every time. Love it!

      Thank you for your sweet words and ongoing support and love. Really makes me feel so yummy. Hope your giveaways were a smashing success!

  6. says

    The book blogging community and fashion community couldn’t be more separate (well, until now), but know that I and many others out there in the book blogosphere support you girls and we are outraged and saddened by what Kristi did. Many of us are no longer going to support or respect her or her blog after this.
    I think you all handled this situation with professionalism and maturity. Kudos to you!
    Jessi @ Auntie Spinelli Reads’s latest post: Speechless by Plagiarism…My Profile

  7. says

    I love you guys :) and i’m sickened that some people are defending her. A blog is hard work and blogging posts are the hardest of all. Somebody in her position knows better than to plagiarise and she knew it was wrong. There is no defence in that. As someone who has had their content plagiarised (as you know) i know how distressing it can be and your help and prev post on this issue was what helped me get the content removed. LOVE YOU BOTH!!!!!!!

  8. Desiree says

    I am not a book blogger but I am involved in the book blogging community. This is the first time I have visited your blog and it was for the sole purpose of this matter at hand. I am truly sorry for what has happened to you. What Kristi did to you and beautifully invisible was WRONG and VERY POORLY addressed by her. I just want you to know that not all of the YA community is backing her or her blog. We are not all out for your, the victims, blood. I for one have unsubscribed to her blog and all other links to The Story Siren, as I know many others have too. Plagiarism is WRONG no matter who does it. Even if my very favorite blogger had done this I would still withdraw my support. The funny thing is that if she would have just owned up to it and given an actual admonition and apology to you, the actual victims, then I along with many of her other ex-followers would most like still be current followers. I wish you nothing but the best and hope that nothing of this nature ever happens to you again.

  9. says

    Hi Vahni -

    I hope you’ve been doing well (aside from this!) since the last time we had the chance to cross paths. I’ve been following your and B’s story and wanted to thank you both for setting an solid example, showing that plagiarism is very real here in blogging, just like everywhere else. I hope your posts have helped bloggers recognize what plagiarism really entails, and I hope they deter others from “accidentally” plagiarizing.

    Your situation struck a chord with me as I’ve been dealing with the same thing, and have blog friends going through it as well. I am also familiar with others dismissing plagiarism as a non-issue, and it can be frustrating. Thank you both again for sharing your stories candidly with us.
    Jean’s latest post: Vintage-inspired: Polka dots, navy bows + rustic goldMy Profile

    • says

      Thank you Jean…I never really thought about plagiarism as a definition and the awareness of it. So your comment makes me feel like something positive has come out of this whole situation.

  10. says

    I try to stay out of all this crap, but when it comes to something like this I have to stand up and say something. I’m truly sorry that you and the other blogs that Kristi plagiarized are being blamed for something you have no control over. Her comments are being moderated so the worst of them are not being shown. I don’t think anyone has even stopped to think about who let the cat out of the bag. They just assume it’s you because they are trying to save her reputation and writing from an emotional place. Comments are being moderated so some of the more harsh ones or maybe more truthful ones aren’t getting through, I don’t know. I didn’t even know who let it out, I had to come here to find out. But I couldn’t imagine if you found out in January why you’d sit on it for so long. We take plagiarism seriously in the YA community, almost ostracizing others in our community who do it, I don’t know why she has people defending her. Taking someone else’s work is not a mistake, it’s intentional and yes she’s human, but she still hasn’t admitted the real truth. She’s put it behind her and moved on. As a member of the YA blogging community, I want to say that we aren’t all sheep and follow her. We don’t all think it was a “mistake” and we don’t believe you should be in the middle of this anymore. Except to be given another apology for the accusations of revenge and an admittance that it was stealing. If it were up to me, you’d have it. I have removed all my links to her and will not give her any recognition anymore. She doesn’t exist for me. I know others have done the same.

    Again, I’m sorry for what’s happened and please don’t judge all of us by what you’ve experienced from this.
    Heather
    hrose2931′s latest post: Review- The Lure of Shapinsay by Krista HolleMy Profile

    • says

      Thanks much for your comment! I am not one to make wholesale judgments…and in fact, I’m loving that book bloggers and fashion bloggers are coming together. Makes sense anyway…I WAS an English major!

      • says

        I was an English major too! So I do know a little about not stealing someone else’s writing. Man I wouldn’t have gotten far if I had done that. I think the penalty for that in college is getting kicked out. But the internet doesn’t have a dean!

        Hope the emails have let up!
        Sorry, really. But I do think it’s great fashion and book bloggers are finding each other. It does make sense. I just read a book that was littered with fashion name dropping-it was part of the story-happens a lot. And if you’ve ever seen some of the gorgeous dresses on the covers of some of the books, you’d be wanting to know more about them. Some designers actually make the dresses on the book covers for sale. So we should all be one big happy family! I’m glad to meet you all!

        Heather
        hrose2931′s latest post: Review-Fairystruck Songs of Magic 3 by J L BryanMy Profile

  11. says

    I’m only just catching up with this, and am absolutely amazed to hear that people have been defending this behaviour, and sending you guys hate mail because if it – I mean, really? What makes people want to defend a thief and abuse the victims? I honestly can’t even begin to wrap my head around that. As you know, I’ve been the victim of plagiarism too many times to count now, so I know only too well what it feels like to have people steal from you, AND to have people try to convince you that it doesn’t matter and you’re making a fuss about nothing. For what it’s worth, I think you and B have handed this totally professionally: you’ve done absolutely nothing wrong here, and I’m glad to see you standing up for yourself as eloquently as ever. x
    Amber’s latest post: I Quit the GymMy Profile

    • says

      Oh, I know you know this song and dance all too well, Amber. Thanks for your words of support and kindness. Coming from you, I am beyond flattered.

  12. says

    Wow…my mouth is still open, it’s so unbelievable. After everything you laid out in the original posts, you guys are still getting the crazy end of the stick??? How is that?? The evidence is so clear! Once again you both handled this with such grace and class and it makes me proud to be part of the community you both serve and love.

    It’s crazy because at the end of the day, we are all bloggers and we are all writers put our ideas and perspectives into the world. The greater your popularity becomes the more responsible you have to be and the more humility you have to show because in the end, it will make you a better person in front of your audience as well as for yourself. She could’ve given you the same amount of class, dignity, and respect you gave her and the end, she is the one that’s going to be looking bad.
    MJ’s latest post: Beauty Look of the Day: Can’t Fight the FrizzMy Profile

    • says

      Hi sweetpea, thanks for your comment and support, always!

      Loved this line:

      The greater your popularity becomes the more responsible you have to be and the more humility you have to show because in the end, it will make you a better person in front of your audience as well as for yourself.

      So, so true.

  13. says

    I don’t know how anyone could doubt the intelligence of ‘just a fashion blogger’ when you so obviously know way more about how to use language than most book bloggers I’ve read. That was beautifully written, honest, and not harsh at all.

    Also really appreciated the Pretty Woman quote. :)
    Christina (A Reader of Fictions)’s latest post: Waiting on Wednesday (5)My Profile

    • says

      Aw, that’s one of the sweetest comments I’ve gotten on this post. Thank you! And hey, love you recognized the quote. I’m kind of a dork like that…Pretty Woman and Shakespeare in one post…

      • says

        I wanted to say something to you, but wasn’t sure what to say. My feelings on this whole thing are relatively middle of the road, since most people seem to have gone to one pole or the other. There are people out there unsubscribing not just from TSS but from anyone who chooses to still have contact with her. And there are people doing the reverse. It’s crazy.

        Personally, I’m not supporting TSS any more, not that I was a huge fan before, but I did enter her giveaways, since she has a fuck-ton. Not exactly hard to give up. Honestly, I think what she did is ridiculous, considering that she wrote a post on plagiarism and stated that taking the ideas from something without due credit was plagiarism, but now she doesn’t know. I mean, either you knew or you didn’t write the post on what plagiarism is, so you didn’t know what it was…because you plagiarized your plagiarism post. I’m assuming it was the former, even if the latter would be altogether more comedic.

        Assuming that she did, in fact, know what she was doing, which I believe she did, I am, first off, a bit bemused at how poorly she did it. She could have added some thoughts of her own, like a different opinion on something, removed a section, added some of her own, etc, and made it different enough that no would have noticed. Whatever. I guess I would rather plagiarists do so incompetently so that they can get caught.

        What really, really bothers me about all of this is her reaction to the discovery. If, in response to your email to you guys, she’d been like ‘I fucked up, I won’t do it again, and how can I make it up to you?’ I would have had a lot more…I don’t know…forgiveness, I guess. I probably still wouldn’t read her blog, but I wouldn’t be commenting on any of this anywhere. The fact that she has dissembled repeatedly? Completely unethical. When you’re caught, you should really just own up to it. When you do something illegal, you take the risk of exposure. She took it and lost, but she’s trying to avoid comeuppance. That’s in no way mature.

        In all honesty, I really doubt anything much will happen to her. Publishers and authors will likely stand by her. The other popular book blogs seem fairly divided, although must of the ones that I read are boycotting her. That’s something I guess.

        Anyway, I’m really sorry it happened to you and your friends. I suppose it’s no surprise someone wanted to steal such well-written content, but that still doesn’t make it right. I really will never understand why people would want to pass off someone else’s content as their own for a freaking hobby. What’s the point? it’s not like kids cheating in school because they have to pass a class. They chose to blog, the point of which is to write shit. If they don’t like writing, blogging might not be the way to go. *headdesk*

        Alright, this is officially gargantuan.

        Love the quotes. :)
        Christina (A Reader of Fictions)’s latest post: OK – Holly ConlanMy Profile

          • says

            Oh, one last thing, because I appreciate irony, and suspect that you do as well. You may not know, because this is a book blog thing, but Insurgent by Veronica Roth is coming out May 1. It’s a super popular sequel. Why this is important is that the publisher came up with a brilliant and somewhat annoying marketing strategy: they chose a select group of bloggers to represent each faction (I haven’t read book one, but they sound like the Harry Potter houses, only based on a particular personality trait). These bloggers then do all of the marketing for them, spending a chunk of money, and hounding everyone to click links constantly.

            Why is this funny? TSS was chosen as the head of the Candor faction. *revels in the irony*
            Christina (A Reader of Fictions)’s latest post: OK – Holly ConlanMy Profile

  14. says

    Okay, I’ve kept fairly quiet about this whole thing but I need to put my two cents in before I explode.
    I’m a YA book blogger so part of the same community as Kristi but I spend an equal amount of my time on fashion blogs. Firstly, it’s absolutely mind boggling that anyone would suggest you guys don’t ‘understand’ plagiarism because you’re ‘just’ fashion bloggers. I don’t even…ugh. That’s literally just stupid.
    Secondly, a big chunk of the YA community has handled this so badly. People are leaping to Kristi’s defence. To me, that’s wrong. She screwed up, did something majorly wrong and does need to be held accountable for that, just as anybody would who fucked up. I don’t personally think either of the apologies on her blog are good enough and I’d have a lot more respect for her if she just held her hands up, admitted what she’d done and apologised to you guys. She should at least have the balls to do that.
    That said, the people who are calling her a bitch on Twitter and calling for her to be outcast from the blogging world are crazy. The people who are saying a word against you guys just blow my mind… Really? You got your content plagiarised so people are angry with you? Really?! Madness.
    People just need to chill the hell out and have a cocktail. The problem here is plagiarism and that’s what should be addressed, not one side against another.
    Ugh. UGH.
    Anyway, a positive for me is that I’ve found a bunch of drama loving bloggers to stay away from. And after visiting yours and B’s blogs I’m a fan. So, there is that :).
    I hope you guys get the apology you deserve and this gets sorted a stress free as possible for all of you involved.
    Carly x
    P.S I’ve written this on my iPhone so I blame all mistakes on autocorrect, I’m not just shit at spelling.
    Carly’s latest post: Review: The Seeing – Diana HendryMy Profile

    • says

      Haaaa….your comment closing cracked me up. Thank you so much for your kind words and support! Welcome to the G&G family, doll.

  15. says

    I am incredibly in awe of you and B- you both handled this with such dignity and grace and carefully researched and stated FACTS. I can not believe anyone would defend a plagiarist (esp a community leader) as a “mistake” to be shook off casually. It’s more than a mistake it is indefensible and wrong. That said, my heart hurts that this comes at a time when B’s heart is elsewhere dealing with real life loss, and to have to deal with hate mail because the guilty has refused to own up and take responsibility for her actions.

    I am proud to know you and B, not just because you both write original and engaging content, but for the way you two have handled this- with facts, and with class. Kudos. And hugs.
    Bella Q’s latest post: Boyfriend Sweater, Joan Jett Tee + MeMy Profile

  16. Bungle says

    I’m so sorry this has happened!
    Being part of the book blogging world I honestly can’t believe how people are standing by the story siren. She would be the first to act out against what she has done and when it happens to an author everyone including her are all over it! And I can’t believe she has the balls to carry on like nothing has happened. I just wonder if her supporters would be acting the same if she had stolen from them! I think not!

  17. says

    I could feel my blood pressure going up just reading this post, so I can only imagine how it felt for you and B to be living this situation out. I hate stuff like this, it depresses me so, but I think you have handled it very well and I hope it is resolved, in a way that satisfies you, as soon as possible! I’m thinking of you. XO, Jill

  18. says

    Well…at least all this BS got me to your blog. Lol. I have a daughter who aspires to be a fashion designer and am always seeking resources for her impressionable young mind. She’s 11. She already knows more about fashion than I do but I’m bookmarking your blog anyway. ;-)
    -Very well written post, by the way.

    • says

      Ha ha, thanks Missy! Welcome, you and your little fashionista! I try to keep it clean over here, so should be OK for her to pop over whenever she’d like.

      Thanks again for your comment and support.

  19. says

    Amen Vahni! Gosh, I’m shaking my head reading this because I cannot believe this happens at all! People should know that it is never okay to plagirise anything!! So sorry that this happened to you both. I love the way that you’ve handled this situation, shows much maturity and respect, and I wouldn’t expect anything less from you amazing ladies. Hugs -xo Much love, ~Madison

  20. says

    I cannot get over that this has been happening to you guys… V you are my freakin’ hero! Seriously, you and B just out classed (Kristi) and handled this situation with such grace and maturity, I would have probably spat my dummy out and called names!!! HUGE respect to you lovelies, not only do you both write beautifully, you guys have wit, humour and awesome style. Nuff said!

    I hope you can both unwind from the stress and unpleasant mail you may have received… I say go have a large martini, like now ladies! It’s great you have set the record straight!

    Much love to you loves!
    x.o.x.o
    A Brit Greek’s latest post: Hot under the collar: Jewellery LoveMy Profile

    • says

      Hi lovely!

      Now if I weren’t married to an Aussie, I would have no idea what “spat my dummy out” means…but luckily I do! I love that expression…spat the dummy. Anyway, thank you for your super sweet comment, for always being there, and for being you. I feel your good vibes across the ocean, babe!

  21. says

    As a writer, blogger and human, I appreciate the high road you’ve taken here. I support you 100%. Everyone is entitled to make mistakes, but when they do, they apologize. Sincerely and addressing every single thing they’ve done wrong. They don’t pass it off and they don’t make halfhearted excuses. And they don’t trash others. Good luck with everything!

  22. says

    *Stands up. Starts the slow clap.*

    It’s cliche, and early 90s, but I don’t even care – you go girl!

    This is EXACTLY what those bullies, mud-slinging, plagiarist defenders need to understand about everything that has happened. YOU are the victim. It doesn’t matter how nice people think Kristi is (and she could very well be the kindest person) – she still committed an intentional crime, and deserves to face the repercussions. I too am waiting for an actual admittance of fault, wherein she admits openly that she has committed plagiarism and is sorry for breaking our trust in her as an ethical blogger. I would hope that that apology is accompanied by one directed specifically at you and B, wherein she apologizes for specifically stealing your intellectual property, but for now, I’m not holding my breath.
    Kelly @ Radiant Shadows’s latest post: ARC Book Review: Ferocity SummerMy Profile

    • says

      Kelly, thank you SO much for your thoughtful comment and for your support. Despite all the B.S., meeting bloggers like you, with brains and integrity, has been an absolute joy.

  23. says

    I found out about this when it exploded all over my Twitter feed. I have personally chosen not to post about it, despite my strong feelings – because things have gotten so out of hand. I have, however, read The Story Siren’s posts on the subject and am disgusted at so many of comments she has received from her, obviously loyal, fans. Nor do I consider her posts to actually constitute an apology.

    However I did want to come here and say that I was shocked and upset to hear you guys have been receiving hate mail over this. I’m also saddened by the reactions from a lot of bloggers on Twitter, from those who support The Story Siren and those who are angry at what she has done.

    Please know that there are a lot of people who are a part of the book blogging community (as it likes to call itself) who have been appalled not only to hear your hard work was stolen but to also hear about the backlash you have received. From what I have seen and read, you have both handled yourself with professionalism and integrity.

  24. says

    As an author, I have to give you guys credit, if someone stole anything from my book I would lose my sh*t. I think you guys have handled this in an honest and very compassionate way. I didn’t know anything about it until I read about it on a book blog, and in my effort to do anything but write this afternoon, I have been hopping from blog to blog to get the full story.

    I’m also going to dig around on your blog for awhile, I promise I won’t take anything! :)

  25. ComaCalm says

    Hey guys, hope you see this. That hashtag, #StopTheStorySiren was created by me and I know it was wrong and I apologise. I give my full permission for you to direct anyone bullying you for it to me, @ComaCalm – if you want to check that it is @ComaCalm saying it, just ask me on twitter! Again, apolgies for any unnecessary abuse that you have received because of my hashtag. It was bloody stupid.

    • says

      That hashtag is something you would class as a “mistake,” right? And look at how you fessed up with no one holding your feet to the fire. I appreciate that. That takes maturity and guts. Too bad you-know-who didn’t get that memo in kindergarten.

      All good, honey.

  26. says

    So sorry to hear that you and B are receiving hate mail and being attacked. What Kristi did was deplorable and, like several others mentioned, I wanted to let you know that not everyone in the book blogging community is supporting her. Plagiarism is unacceptable, no matter who does it, and no one should attack the victims. So sorry you guys have to go through this, but kudos for behaving like mature adults instead of spoiled brats!
    Alexia561′s latest post: Plagiarism – My 2 CentsMy Profile

  27. says

    As several others have said, there is a large group of us in the book blogging community that support you both. Several blogs have been written to that. My own post, http://wp.me/p2jyKt-1H, links back to Parajunkee’s and I believe hers links to some others … it goes on and on.

    Many of us have decided to boycott TSS in honor of the hell that she, and her followers have put you through. I just wish there was more that we could do to rally around you. Victims should never be abused for speaking out.

  28. says

    When this news first exploded in the book blogging world I saw many tweets from people claiming that you and Beautifully Invisible were jealous of Kristi. My response to many was to ask, why would you guys be jealous? You both run popular fashion blogs. What do you care about a popular book blog? From what I have seen you both have great following in your niche and don’t need the added stats. If you were jealous and wanted to make a fuss then it would have been super easy to make this issue public to the book blogging community when it happened in January.

    One thing that’s always kind of shammed me about the book blogging world is how filled with drama it is and I am sorry that some of that has since spilled into your lives. What happened is not ok and I can’t believe that so many people are saying that it is. I’m sorry that you are getting attacked by this. You’ve done nothing wrong and have handled this horrible issue with far more grace and strength of character than I’ve seen others in a similar situations. If Kristi was anyone else in the blogging community you wouldn’t be going through what you are. I don’t understand the reactions I’ve seen I can only stand up for what I believe in. I’m probably going to alienate people in my community for supporting you over Kristi but I don’t blog to make friends. Making friends is always a great side benefit but I blog for me and about what I love. But I feel that those people I do associate also reflects on me so I’d rather stand next to people who show integrity and grace than with someone who chose an opposite path.
    Irish’s latest post: WWW Wednesday: 25 April 2012 (Find out what I’m reading this week)My Profile

  29. says

    I was referring to profesh’s comment but the comment system went all wonky and I’m last rather than replying to her comment.

  30. says

    I am part of that YA book blogging community who read Kristi’s blog daily, and was appalled when I found out it was her who plagiarized. I am so, so sorry this happened to you, and all the others she took posts from. I know she won’t come out and saying “I’m sorry for plagiarizing,” but as part of the YA book blogging community, I just want to extend my apologies for everything that has happened in the past two days.

    I was also appalled when I found out about the hashtags. The #StopTheStorySiren one stopped me in my tracks; we went from talking about it to actually bullying and that is NOT right. Just because somebody did something against the law does not mean we should bully them. I think in a way, she’s a victim because of the bullying. And that’s it. She made a mistake, and she should own up to it. Sadly, she won’t, because that’s her behavior. I just… I’m sorry this happened to you and everybody else; I’m sorry the YA book blogging community dragged you into our drama-themed party.
    ashelynn hetland’s latest post: Waiting on Wednesday (32): In A FixMy Profile

  31. says

    I visited B’s blog and now I’m here. First of all, I am a follower of the blog in question, but that does not prevent me from seeing the huge mistake that she has made and feeling truly bad for you and B on having your work plagiarized. It is not okay to do what she did and I am so apalled that people are treating you guys like the bad guys here.

  32. says

    It’s good to know that you, the ones who were wronged, can be adult about this. That’s not sarcasm. I appreciate that you were upset & took action but were not the ones who ousted Kristi to the book blogging community. And you have not once resorted to name-calling or hash tags. It’s a credit to you that you have always remained mature, even when attacked by those with misinformation or poorly drawn conclusions.
    Jenny’s latest post: Plagiarism, Lies, & Emotional Evisceration: A Few QuestionsMy Profile

  33. says

    I am really saddened by this. Fashion bloggers may pose in front of the camera but many of us are intelligent and have other careers. I fully support the way you have handled this if you need us to rally behind you in ANY way please do not hesitate. This is why I keep my pulse on IP issues in blogging because the audacity of some online personalities is mind blowing. You two are so mature and well deserving of the respect you command in the Fashion blogging community. Stay up and encouraged because we got your back!!!! : )

    *As a graduating law student and student attorney at my school’s Intellectual Property Clinic I would like to say this is veryyy UNCOOL and also very sketchy!
    FashionBrew’s latest post: My Lookbook// Chevron Skirt x Sheer TopMy Profile

  34. says

    I never would have guessed that anyone would have stooped to the levels to send you two (the victims) hateful emails. I heartsick to think you have been attacked in this. It makes me sick seeing bullying on ANY level, AT ALL.

    I sincerely hope that you get the apology that you truly deserve, and that this entire hailstorm of badness dies down quickly so that you can go back to doing what you do best without all this drama.

    I wish you all the best.
    Reading Angel’s latest post: Daemon Invasion is HEREMy Profile

  35. says

    Bravo. This was well said and handled with grace and sophistication. Please know that your harassment is appalling and most of us are trying to put an end to this ridiculous behavior. It’s a shame that most of it probably wouldn’t have happened if just back in January a sincere apology and admittance of guilt was made. I apologize for my community and the continued mistreatment you ladies are receiving. You achieved your desired results, she no longer has the posts up and people are aware.
    Parajunkee’s latest post: Book Blogging 101: The Drama Machine & How To BoycottMy Profile

  36. says

    I’m short on time so haven’t read through all the comments but… I’m an author of books and articles for various publications. I’ve been the victim of plagiarism (not on the blog thankfully, only stolen photos grrr), and I will say that publishers do take this issue VERY seriously. So yes, I think both you and B should take this directly to the publisher. Who cares about the fallout, she was wrong to lift content, and she should be held accountable. Whatever you decide, I’m with you 100% and let me know if I can be of any help.
    Much love,
    Suzanne
    Suzanne aka Punk Glam Queen’s latest post: Experiencing Technical DifficultiesMy Profile

  37. says

    I found myself reading this and thinking, “Deep breaths, deep breaths!” ALL OF THIS MAKES ME SO MAD! You guys don’t deserve any of this negativity coming your way. You did this girl a favor by not outing her in January, which was the high road in this situation.

    You know we’re behind you, Vahni (and B).
    Courtney’s latest post: Power of the Red BootsMy Profile

  38. says

    Kudos for the way you guys have handled this situation!

    This whole debacle has been made realize how segregated and cliquey blogging is, regardless of whether the topic is fashion or books. It was like a damn gang-fight on Twitter this week. The negative attitudes some people displayed is shameful and I’m sorry that you had to feel the need to defend yourselves. That should NOT have happened! Even though it was not your intention and you may not really care, you have earned the respect of many in the book blogging community. There are MANY of us who will not condone, pacify, or support Kristi and her actions. A mistake is a mistake and her mismanaging the situation only made things worse!

    Sadly, I doubt that you’ll ever get the apology that you deserve….but I do hope that this will become water under the bridge and we can all go back to doing what we love.
    Best regards,
    Isalys / Book Soulmates
    Isalys’s latest post: Letter to JennyMy Profile

  39. says

    I’m terribly sorry she did that, and even sorrier that some other nutcases in the book blogging world are chasing you down. Yes, plagiarism happens — but to you, not to her. She’s the one that made it happen.

  40. says

    I’m glad you put out the fact that you are a hobby blogger and are in FACT a paid WRITER. I, for one, am a lifestyle blogger with the emphasis on fashion/beauty and my life as a mom. I get paid as an expert in my field and had been before I knew what blogging was. I’m sick of people thinking that because you “blog”, you do not know better or much. Hearing how you handled the situation and how you address it is why I came to your blog. I’m not trying to follow the drama but very impressed by how you have handled it all because at the end of the day (you) B*tch knows her stuff!

    Yanira
    Yanira Garza’s latest post: Style Stealin’: Ms. OlsenMy Profile

  41. says

    I’m still appalled by the BB community, some of which started #hashtags and flinging mud at one another. I don’t condone bullying and I seen way too much “social bullying” as it’s called in the way things went with the drama. Dragging people down, excluding one another, and embarrassing people at large. It’s like kindergarden all over again, saying “eww, they have cooties!”

    I just wish a handful would have stopped and been more rational and less over the top in how they had to express themselves on such a topic.

    I hope things go back to normal for you and the BB community, cause I for one am tired of all the same repetitive finger pointing… which almost comes off as copycats themselves.

  42. says

    I for one, am very surprised to see that everything is still “business as usual” over at Kristi’s site. I don’t think #stopthestorysiren goes too far – nobody suggested attacking her pets, or behaving like mobsters over this. What she deserves, quite simply, is just a good-old fashioned shunning.

  43. says

    I followed my way over to this post and I have been much impressed by how you all handled this.
    I can never understand how some people feel that the “anonymity” of the web can give them license to be rude, insulting and down right hostile toward another person.
    Sandy M’s latest post: Awake!My Profile

  44. says

    Hi!

    I’m Brazilian and I knew your blog because of this scandal. I already have listened about The Story Siren, and got chocked to know that one of the most influents bloggers had made such a bad thing. Now, I’m even more chocked to see that some people are defending her. Yes, she has the right to regret, but this didn’t change the fact that she was wrong and she need to deal with consequences of her mistake.

    Well, sorry for my English mistakes. I just want let you know that this case is echoing here too, and opening the eyes of many bloggers that didn’t even knew about plagiarism on internet. Last wednesday, we had a protest named “Blogosfera antiplágio” and a “collective blogging” (I don’t know if this is the correct term. I mean, 200 bloggers were united to post in their blogs at the same time about plagiarism), and it was very good. We can’t stop people to rob our content, but we have plenty of tools to fight against them, and we’ll do this.

    ;)
    Cíntia Mara’s latest post: Blogosfera antiplágioMy Profile

    • says

      Cintia, thank you for your comment and for your support! I think it’s AMAZING that you all had a protest, “Blogosfera antiplágio,” because of all this, and that this experience, unfortunate as it has been, has opened the eyes of many. That’s the entire reason B and I even wrote the first posts—so that someone may be better informed should they find themselves in the same situation.

  45. Kathrin says

    Okay, I just have to compliment you for this reasonable and still considerably calm approach to the whole plagiarism affair even after what has come up these past few days. You’re staying cool and just state the facts, which I highly appreciate and I have to say – as fashion bloggers, you don’t need to know the book blogging “scene”, and you certainly don’t need to know the big-ish names in the YA book blogging scene. I mean, it’s a small group, if you take every blog on the entire planet into account.
    As a former (and maybe again in the future) book blogger, I have to say I feel bad that you had to deal with the unfair reactions of other people. I believe you did nothing right, you simply stated what happened and didn’t name anyone. That, in my humble opinion, means you took the high road, whereas someone else still can’t apologize. It’s sad that this is really the state of things, but apparently no one can change anything about it.

    On the bright side, I found your and B’s blogs thanks to this whole mess and I enjoy them both so much I will definitely come back ! :)

  46. says

    I’ve been trying to stay out of all the drama for the most part, but after reading this I just wanted to say that you have my full support. I’m truly sorry she did this to you, and then added insult to injury with her beat-around-the-bush apology. The book blogging community is not as ugly as it has seemed over the last few days, and I know there are a lot of us who fully support you and are ashamed of the behavior of our community. Thank you for setting an example on how to handle an awful situation with class, and continuing to stand your ground despite the mob mentality you’ve been faced with. I hope nothing like this ever happens to you again, and I hope the rest of us can learn something from this mess.

    Also, <333 the Hamlet quote :)
    Casey (The Bookish Type)’s latest post: Cover Reveal: The Evolution of Mara Dyer (#2) by Michelle HodkinMy Profile

    • says

      Hi Casey, thank you! I think the positive part of all of this (and the entire reason B and I wrote the original posts) was so that other could indeed learn from the experience so if it happens they know how to deal with it.

  47. says

    Whoa! V > I would hate to be the one that crossed you. Your words are so powerful. I could feel the heat coming off the screen! I don’t blame you for a second. I read the original posts when all this first came out in January and was impressed that no names or identities beyond the victims were revealed. I was appalled then and even more appalled now. Reading your post here today dropped my jaw quite literally. I am sure this has been a harrowing experience for both you and B. I am very proud of the way you ladies have handled this.
    To sum it up> You and B ROCK!
    Fashnlvr’s latest post: In Memory of The Fashionable Miss BooMy Profile

  48. says

    I had no idea of all this until earlier today as I follow a number of book blogs and saw it on Twitter too. I read both yours and Beautifully Invisible’s multiple posts on the subjects and have to applaud your initial reactions and responses since then. Way to go, ladies. Personally, I never followed the book blogger’s blog in question, although I did “follow” her on Twitter once upon a time before I got sick of all of her giveaways. However, I won’t “follow” her again or read anything to do with her “meme,” although I’m not really into a lot of memes. I participate in one or two here or there. Anyway, again, just wanted to let you know I think both you and B. responded appropriately, with anger but also with reason. Nicely done.

  49. says

    Go Vahni! You tell ‘em! Your views and posts on plagarism have been so helpful to many out there in the fashion blogging community and beyond. I’m gonna retweet this for sure. It sounds like such a mess but its so inspiring to see you defend your patch with the kind of dignity and integrity that we love you for. Love how you pointed out that you are a paid writer for a living hah! Wannabe writer my backside. You rock! Keep fighting the good fight!
    Veshoevius’s latest post: BoathouseMy Profile

  50. Maine-ly a reader says

    I agree wholeheartedly that you and your fellow bloggers were victims, and deserve a decent apology at the very least. In addition, I am also pretty horrified that the fact that the woman who stole your work is a young adult book blogger is being kind of glossed over by many of the people in this terrible brouhaha. I can only assume, based on her content, that many of her readers are kids, tweens, young adults. Whatever you want to call them they’re impressionable minds. I feel that people who work with kids have an additional duty to integrity above and beyond even what we all have as humans. It’s clear here that you and your friends are FAR better role models for kids, and should be held up as examples not demonized by the very community that caters to kids.

  51. says

    I used to visit Kristi maybe 2 times a week or so. She was so influential to me being the Queen Bee of the book world. Publishers love her and she gets all the books she wants. I used to visit her for her (your) blogging tips in good faith that she was writing those herself. I was shocked and disappointed to find out all this time those blogs I thought were her hard work wasnt even hers. I have since stopped going to her blog and I am no longer participating in her weekly Sunday meme In My Mailbox.

    You girls have had my support since this broke, and I am so saddened that her minions would attack you both. Unforutunately such is her stronghold in the community and so whilst I know majority of people feel the same ways me, there are many people who will continue to support her, because they get hits from her, they reap the benefits of being ‘friends’ with the girl at the top.

    That being said you have both dealt with this whole thing with such professionalism. I didn’t visit fashion blogs before but now I have two amazing ones bookmarked. :) I will continue to read YOUR blogger tips. xx

  52. says

    Man, what a situation! I am sorry for all you had to go through! So much ill-informed people, and attacking you guys? So uncalled for. Kristi handled this horridly and I just want to say that 1)I’m sorry you guys had to deal with this 2)your situation gave me the push to get analytics on my blog 3)hopefully all the intelligent posts that I have seen coming out of this (including yours) will help educate some people on what plagiarism actually is. Again, so sorry for all your troubles. You have my support :)

  53. Anne says

    I hope the storm has abated for now.
    You conduct through this has been balanced and extremely fair. I hope you never have to go through it again.
    and no, the internet doesn´t have a Dean, but it never forgets either.

  54. says

    First of all, you are awesome.

    The people attacking you and the other victim of Kristi’s thievery are the real bullies. I wish Kristi had been much more clear in her “clarification” posts (perhaps she needs to look up that definition along with plagiarism), because she really does her best to sound like a victim. The only thing clear about it was that it caused a lot of confusion, and caused lots of her followers to defend her even without having a clue as to what she’d done. I do hold her somewhat responsible for some of her defenders actions, because she’s done nothing to dissuade them. You and
    B of Beautifully Invisible have been more than fair and gracious in your handling of the original plagiarism and it’s more recent fall out.

    And I’m a proud new follower of this “just a fashion blogger’s” site. ;)
    Kate- Midnight Book Girl’s latest post: Sundays In Bed With… Envy and DivergentMy Profile

  55. says

    There is something really wrong when I feel glad that I’m just a plain old bookblogger, without the “YA” in front. Not that this makes a big difference. I feel horribly ashamed about potentially being associated with the people who sent you hate-mail, who acted this immature and with Kristi. *cuts ties* And wow. Your reaction.. I’m not sure I could deal with it this well. If I hadn’t already respected you for dealing with the initial problem so very well in the first place, I would now. Don’t think I can add anything to what has already been said.. (Especially because I’m good at reading, not writing ;D) So I’ll just leave it at this. *sigh*
    Patricia’s latest post: Plagiarism ReplacementsMy Profile

  56. says

    (copied directly from my comment over at Beautifully Invisible):

    I confess that I still don’t understand why you agreed to keep the identity of the plagiarist secret back in January when you first discovered the theft, but I commend both you and Grit and Glamour for having a helluva lot of class and maturity.

    Take care of yourselves and keep yourselves safe (retaliation harassment is a horrible thing), but know that there are many, many people who do know that you are the victims here.

  57. says

    Mwahahaha. Let me start of my saying I absolutely love the use of hamlet in this post. It was a fine way of stating the truth!! If you cant tell by my name, I am a nook blogger (yea you probably knew that, but I felt the need to say it anyway) I have just read the many many posts about the thief and initially I was Shocked. I mean, I follow(ed) her. I read those posts and made sure my blog complied (ive only been blogging for a little while. Makes sense to learn from the “pros”) but to find out she plagarised pissed me off. Granted, you see things every day and think “wow that’s a wonderful point. I’d like to use that someday.” I say it all the time. Usually, I never get to use it, but I remember one time I did, I spent 45 minutes trying to remember where I got it from so I could give credit. On the times I couldnt remember, I either didnt use the info or blatantly said (in conversation because this was before I had a blog) that “I remember someone saying…blah blah blah” It’s just common courtesy. I’m sorry this happened to you and your blogging friends. Just know that even a lot of the book bloggers are on your side.

    I’m not one who normally speaks up for myself, and so I used to think I wouldnt say anything if something like this happened to me, however, thanks to you and the bravery of your friend bloggers, I know how to do it correctly if it ever happens, and I dont think I’d let it go unnoticed. Thanks!
    Sherre’s latest post: Review: Article 5 by Kristen SimmonsMy Profile

  58. says

    Hello!!! Or better:
    Dear Vahni!!!

    Don’t know what to say or how to begin! However: this is brilliant! I love reading your blog because of your opinions, way of writing, advices, outfits,etc. and although I know you only via reading, I felt very proud when you announced that you’re contributor on IFB! I am also fashion blogger (on blogger, know how much you love wordpress, but so far I’m okay with this) and know how much time is necessary to make post, write it, edit it,… and then see that someone has stolen it! Fortunately, it never happened to me, but can sympathise with you. Once I saw that one (poor & unoriginal) girl totally copied Rumi Neely’s post (& even header & font), and I told to her, but there was no reactions, so probably it doesn’t bother this one to copy and the other one to be copied. You have good blogging buddies so you haven’t had sooooo many problems with solving it and the audience accepted it well!!! As I can see – you are very smart, high educated woman who knows how to stand and fight for your rights (and share it with others), no matter is it on internet or in real life! You have my support!!!
    Love yer blog & looking forward for reading new posts (with not this topic as a content :)

    Anika

  59. says

    You’re amazing and I cannot believe you are getting backlash for being a victim. I love this post and reading it, I can totally *hear* you saying it out loud to me. Kudos to you, my wonderful friend, for defending your intellectual property and setting the standard for bloggers everywhere! Bravo!!
    Kristina | PSS’s latest post: Rive GaucheMy Profile

  60. says

    Ouch! I was directed here by another site. Sorry to hear about your hard work being plagiarized. It seems to be going around. Some of the things I’ve done in a group was taken and “reworded”. I’ve had another friend who’s entire site was stolen, down to her screenshots showing her name!

    Your blog isn’t really one I’d follow since I’m more of a book follower than fashion follower. I can say that your website is very pleasing to the eye. That’s probably why it was plagiarized. :(

  61. says

    Kudos to you two for the way you have continued to handle this ugly situation. I tell ya…I haven’t been following you ladies that long, but it’s been long enough for me to you know that you two are not to be messed with! Watch out yall…these kittens have claws!! lol ;-) Keep it up ladies!
    LaToya’s latest post: busy bee + my first feature!My Profile

  62. Kelli says

    I am a member of the book blogging community and could not believe what happened to you. I know Kristi has still not apologized directly to you, and that fact is an embarrassment to the book blogging community as a whole. Please know that there are so many of us who have stopped following Kristi in all forms, and we fully support you and how you handled things. To be perfectly honest, her mindless minions make me sick. They defend her without examining the facts. It is ridiculous!
    I don’t mean to stir the pot, but thought you might like to know that Kristi has declared this week ‘plagiarism week’ on her blog and says she is using this as an opportunity to educate everyone about plagiarism. I take offense to the fact that she assumes the rest of us don’t know what constitutes plagiarism and thinks that we, along with her, need to be educated about plagiarism. Silly me, thought you already did that!

  63. says

    A HUGE, HUGE thank you to all of you who left comments, shared your thoughts, tweeted, and posted on this topic on you own blogs! Your support has been mind-blowing. Thank you so very much.

    Remember, there is NEVER anything wrong with protecting your intellectual property, in fact we MUST! I hope that none of you ever have to experience something like this, but if you do, please know that you must speak up, and you will have a network of support behind you!

    Plagiarism is dishonest and deceitful.

    All you have to do to prevent committing plagiarism is:

    1. Note if you were inspired by another blogger’s post, or if your post cites info from someone else.
    2. Put verbatim text in quotation marks.
    3. ALWAYS include a clear link back to your source(s)!

    That’s it. If only TSS had done that, this never would never have happened.

    • says

      Hi Elaine, forgive the tardiness of my response to your comment. But thank you for sharing your thoughts on this, and for your apology, even though it’s certainly not your fault!

      The little sycophants that follow her…I can’t even let them bother me. Some people just cannot deal with the truth or learn from issues like this—so I’m sure they will continue to be duped their entire lives!

  64. says

    Maybe I’m not being at all political or nice, but she is a b*tch, anyway. Not just for plagiarizing, because people do break down, sometimes, I guess, though that’s still unacceptable, but because she didn’t fully apologize, nor did she say that you or Beautifully Invisible were victimized. What drama. Gives all us bookish a bad name, I must say.
    My support may not mean much, but…
    Stay strong!
    Kim @ Snuggle’s latest post: Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare BlakeMy Profile

    • says

      Hi Kim…thanks again for ALL your comments! She can do what she wants, you know? It’s not MY conscience or reputation that is suffering. They can all spin it ten ways from Sunday, but she and B and I know THE TRUTH.

      And your support means a lot! Without readers and interaction, I’m just a girl typing away on a lonely little island, and that’s no fun.

  65. says

    I found you because you pinned some instagram icons I’d made & incidentally stumbled on this post. Just visited Beautifully Invisible. The most that has ever happened to me is that someone reposted an entire post of mine, but they did link back to me all over the place & removed most of the images promptly when I asked them to. Even that felt violating somehow! It takes so much effort to write each post & I cannot imagine someone copying entire posts day after day & not thinking anything of it until you’re called out. I’m glad you guys found out sooner rather than much later. There is absolutely no excuse for Kristi’s plagarism. Unbelievable.
    caroline @ c.w.frosting’s latest post: Whimsical EntrywayMy Profile

    • says

      Hi Caroline…thank you and welcome! I appreciate your comment. The plagiarism we experienced was definitely frustrating AND unbelievable, but ultimately, I sleep well at night. Wasn’t me who stole and lied about it!

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