Well, the book blogosphere has had another scandal. Was going to keep my mouth shut and wait for it to blow over but, for whatever reason, decided that I wanted to add my two cents. Maybe because it deals with plagiarism? Or maybe because it involves one of the bigger fish in the book blogger pond? Or just maybe because the backlash is getting so ugly?
I first got the whiff of scandal when I saw some strange posts in my Google Reader. Several of the blogs I follow mentioned that The Story Siren was accused of plagiarism, so I followed the trail to see what all the fuss was about. One of the most interesting posts was from Smart Bitches Trashy Books, which led me to the posts by the victims, Beautifully Invisible and Grit & Glamour.
The evidence presented by the victims seemed pretty damning, but I wanted to wait and see what Kristi had to say before making up my mind. Have to admit that I found her original explanation and apology a little....lame. The clarification she posted this morning is a little better, but I found it to be too little, too late.
It's a shame that this happened, because Kristi seems like a nice woman who is passionate about YA books and just wants to share her love of reading. Did she make a mistake? In my opinion, yes. A huge mistake. And that's why I wanted to see how she responded to these accusations before making up my mind.
So now the Story Siren fans are circling their wagons and attacking anyone who wants her to stand up and take responsibility for her actions. One of the victims posted a response to Kristi's apology. Accusations of bullying are being flung by both sides. It's turning ugly...
This is an extremely serious issue and I feel that there should be zero tolerance for it. This is why, after researching the facts and reviewing all of my options, I decided that I could no longer follow The Story Siren's blog. I will no longer participate in her In My Mailbox meme either, which is a shame because it's a great meme. But zero tolerance is zero tolerance.
There's a much better post at Ten Cent Notes about why we shouldn't ignore this issue just because Kristi is so popular, that I feel is worth reading.
Deciding that I could no longer follow The Story Siren is my personal decision. Everyone should make up their own mind after reviewing the facts. And in my opinion, the facts are pretty damaging.
I feel for Kristi. I really do. But she is an adult who made a choice, and is now paying for her actions. I think that she might even gain some new followers because of this.
I hope that the scandal blows over soon and the ugliness stops. In the meantime, I appreciate that some serious discussions are taking place about the problem of plagiarism and I've learned a thing or two about how to protect content. The book blogging community is a wonderful, marvelous entity. It's a shame that it's sheen has been tarnished....