DEJA VU ALL OVER AGAIN
- PAT HAMMOND Apr 9, 1999 10:48 AM
Is it just me or is the NY Times restaurant section
(both Wed. and Fri.) plodding in Chowhounds footsteps?
The most recent examples that stand out in my mind are:
1. Buying (was it tacos?) from a truck parked under a
2. The big Korean food splash this past Wed.
3. And today Asimov on huge portion restaurants.
It's a free country (more or less) and a free press, it
just seems more than coincidental. Thoughts, anyone?
But Pat, the Times (espcially Eric) has mentioned the site. Several times, in fact...which is not true of several other publications which use chowhound.com as a source.
I'm starting to suspect that some of the many writers who hang out here daily trolling for tips would prefer that their readers AREN'T made aware of the site...so they can plunder with impunity. That's show biz...though I find it puzzling, since it's in writers' self-interest to give us publicity. Publicity builds traffic, which helps us attract the ads that will keep the site a viable resource (for THEM as well as for us!) in the long run. I'm currently making a push to make chowhound.com economically viable, and if it fails I'm not going to continue to finance it out-of-pocket, let alone dedicate so much of my time.
But, in any case, look at it this way: if mainstream publications are catering more to their chowhound readers, that's a GOOD thing! I'd love for this not to be the only place people like us get the kind of information we crave.
re: Jim Leff
Thanks for your thoughtful response.
I wasn't implying that it was a bad thing, just a thing! Nor do I want a private club. It's incredibly exciting to read a post from Korea, or any number of exotic places. Stumbling into this site from John Thorne's was a very happy accident for me a few years ago. I will admit that I've been nursing this "twinge" for the last several weeks, each time I've read something that sounded very reminiscent of Chowhound. But you're absolutely right about Asimov; he has been generous.
Thanks for helping me put this all in perspective. You necessarily see the broader picture. And if it helps to facilitate ads and allows this site to continue and grow, good for us all! pat
re: Lisa Antinore
If they're copying text without crediting the source,
then a complaint is definitely in order. A letter to
the editor might produce interesting results.
If they are cribbing ideas or information from a public
discussion without crediting the source, I'm less
concerned. If a reviewer overhears a friend touting a
restaurant and mentions it in his column, should his
friend get a footnote? Maybe in an ideal world, but I
don't think it's really objectionable.
re: Josh Mittleman
"If they are cribbing ideas or information from a public discussion without crediting the source, I'm less concerned. If a reviewer overhears a friend touting a restaurant and mentions it in his column, should his friend get a footnote? Maybe in an ideal world, but I don't think it's really objectionable "
There's a difference between crediting a friend and crediting a news source.
But as you say, it's a question of the extent of the "cribbing". I agree with Lisa that Time Out sometimes does go over the line (they've been dogging my steps for years now), though I didn't catch that wine-related article.
At any rate, as I've said elsewhere, it's in writers' best interest to mention this site from time to time. We need more traffic in order to attract advertisers, and without ads we can't continue for more than another year or so. If writers find us useful, the publicity that they can easily bring us will help preserve this useful tool. Which benefits all parties.
Which reminds me: all you non-writers out there...have you used the "refer-a-chowhound-friend" feature to tell hungry friends about us? The more the merrier! Use the link below.