Friday, May 14, 2010

Journalist Sued For Wanting To Practice Journalism

Okay, maybe the headline is a bit unfair. According to this article, media company Hamptons Online is suing the founder and part-owner of, Robert Florio for millions of dollars because they claim Florio ran off with the source codes for and then used those source codes to build a rival website, which is now up and running and pwning

Got it? Us neither. But basically Florio got fired because he wanted to practice journalism and his fellow owners/board members were like, "journalism, schmournalism, let's just see how many celebrities we can pack into each article." But Florio wouldn't relent and so they shit-canned him. When he left, he owed hundreds of thousands of dollars that he charged against the business that he can't justify, according to the lawsuit. Not only that, they claim he took the source codes and built, which is a rival site only in that it has the word "Hamptons" in it, and has a similar banner at the top. Other than that, a cursory glance at would reveal that Florio's new website actually (gulp) practices journalism and (double gulp!) reports on things happening out east that don't involve Alec Baldwin, Gwyneth Paltrow, Madonna, or the Real Housewives of New York City.

Our favorite part is that Hamptons Online also wants to get back the Volkswagon Bus Florio had signed under his name and drove off the lot. Hey Hamptons Online, if you can't act like real hippies and report critically, speaking truth to power, than you can't have the hippie-mobile! I should be the abitrator in this thing.

They also want to go after a reporter, which is like suing a kid's lemonade stand. Andrea Aurichio is named in the suit because she allegedly said mean things about the quality of the site (it sucks) and the personalities of the management (they blow.) Apparently she got shit-canned also, back in November, because she was "behind" some anonymous comments left that tore up some of the articles that appeared on (God, I hope at least one of those comments was a judo chop to Sean MFK Bruns). The official beef with Aurichio is that she's interfered with potential advertisers, by contacting them and telling them the site sucks and the people there blow, and also for damaging their "character and reputation."

You mean this character and reputation?
“[The majority] came to a decision that trying to bring another news outlet into the marketplace didn’t make sense for us to do,” Mr. Kazickas said. “We weren’t equipped for it. The economics weren’t there. So we just decided that we would go in a different direction.”

What direction might that be? You're a media company that didn't see the value in! You should sue yourselves for breach of integrity.

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