Bloggers Cry "Foul!", Or At Least "Plagiarism!", Over Chron Writer

A lot of local sports bloggers don't particularly like Richard Justice of the Houston Chronicle; they think he tends to belittle their opinions and professionalism.

So a few of them cackled a bit recently over some postings about the Texans' Dunta Robinson, who got fined for wearing shoes with "Pay Me" written on them during a game.

On September 16, Alan Burge of the Examiner website wrote this:

Let's see ... doing the math to put it into a monetary perspective that most of us can understand, a $25,000 fine for someone making $9.96 million per year is the equivalent of $188 bucks for those who make $75,000 per year. Feel better now?
Two days later, Justice wrote this:

If you're out there doing the 9-to-5 thing, fighting traffic, trying to make ends meet and proud to be pulling down $75,000, that fine would be the equivalent of your boss docking you $188. That's not even enough money to take your family to a game at Reliant Stadium.

Sounds a little familiar, doesn't it?

Fanning the fires was the fact that at one point, when Burge commented on Justice's blog with some criticism, the Chron writer responded by saying Burge was a blogger who steals from others "and calls it research." (That exchange was apparently taken down, but preserved by another Justice critic.)

So we asked Justice about it all. He says emphatically that he did not steal from Burge, but instead heard the cited figures from fellow KGOW host Lance Zierlein.

"I've never read anything [Burge] has written," Justice says by e-mail. "Not a single word. Would take a lie-detector test. Lance Z mentioned the 188 figure and I did the math. I'll repeat: never word a single word he's written." (We assume he meant "never read" in that last sentence.)

We're pretty sure that won't assuage his critics. We're also pretty sure he couldn't care less.

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Richard Connelly
Contact: Richard Connelly