I noticed last week that the Northfield News editorial, Your voice could help save the post office, didn’t mention the fact that Northfield Patch had launched an online petition a couple days earlier, Save the Northfield Post Office! Sign the Online Petition.
No surprise there. The Northfield News won’t link to needy area non-profit organizations in their stories (see this week’s story on the Community Action Center’s Food Shelf as an example), let alone their media competitors or any area bloggers.
But yesterday the Northfield News behaved very badly by putting up their own Save the Northfield Post Office Online Petition, linking to it from their Facebook Wall, and using nearly the exact wording of Patch’s petition. The minor wording changes:
Patch: We, as Northfield residents, stand strongly opposed to the consideration of the United States Postal Service (USPS) to close the downtown Northfield Post Office.
News: As Northfield residents, we stand strongly opposed to the consideration of the United States Postal Service (USPS) to close the downtown Northfield Post Office.
Patch: The downtown post office has been at its current location since 1936 and has become as much a symbol of Northfield as anything else in our community.
News: The downtown post office has sat majestically overlooking the Cannon River at its current location since 1936 and is considered a symbol of Northfield as much as anything else in our community.
Everything else is word-for-word the same.
I don’t know if this plagiarism but it’s a shitty thing for Northfield News Publisher/Editor Sam Gett, Managing Editor Jerry Smith, and Associate Editor Suzy (Suzanne) Rook to do.
It’s this type of bullying behavior that makes me root for Goliath (media giant AOL is the owner of Patch) against David (Michigan-based Huckle Media LLC is the owner of the Northfield News and 16 other hometown newspapers).
If you know know former Northfielder Renee Huckle Mittelstaedt, now president and co-owner of Huckle Media LLC, consider contacting her about this. No, Huckle Media doesn’t have a website (aarrgghh!) but Renee can be reached via her LinkedIn account and her Facebook account.