Steve Penn sues KC Star after being fired for plagiarizing press releases

So reports Courthouse News:

“The widespread practice in journalism is to treat such press releases as having been voluntarily released by their authors into the flow of news with the intention that the release will be reprinted or published, and preferably with no or minimal editing,” Penn says in his complaint in Jackson County Court. “As such, attribution of such news releases is typically not expected by the author, nor offered by journalists who receive them.”
Penn claims that it was “the widespread practice at the Star … to use these press releases without attribution”.
But, he claims, “Nevertheless, one of (his) supervisors apparently objected to the widespread practice and without informing plaintiff that it should no longer be followed, decided to ‘make an example’ of plaintiff and to push for his firing.

“The plain and ordinarily understood meaning of these words was that plaintiff had engaged in professional misconduct.”
Penn seeks actual and punitive damages for defamation and prima facie tort. He is represented by Lyle Gregory, of Raymore, Mo.
The editor is not named as a defendant. The defendants are the Star and McClatchy Newspapers.


One comment

  1. Pingback: Pitch: Penn’s claim that copying press releases is common practice at Star ‘total horseshit’ « MediaKC

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