Huffington Post bloggers lose ‘exploitation’ legal fight
A group of unpaid contributors to the Huffington Post have lost a court bid to claim millions back in profits from owners AOL after a judge ruled that bloggers knew their position when they started writing.
The bloggers had claimed that they had been exploited by Arianna Huffington, the blogs founder, after she cashed in to the tune of $315m after selling the site to AOL.
Disgruntled contributors, who didn’t receive a penny, subsequently claimed that they were entitled to as much as a third of this sale price, as it was their work which gave the site its value.
Ruling against this notion however judge John Koeltl pointed out that bloggers had been aware the role was unpaid when they signed up and could not rewrite these terms retrospectively.
Unpeturped by this failure however the lead litigant, Jonathan Tasini, vowed to fight on, saying: “We're using the lawsuit to spark a movement and an organising effort among bloggers to set a standard for the future because this idea that all individual creators should work for free is like a cancer spreading through every media property on the globe.”