In my opinion, plagiarism is extremely gross and incredibly damaging to one's reputation. What bothers me the most about this latest scandal brought to light within the last few days, is the hypocrisy that lurks behind the scenes. I've seen several of those bloggers and defender's of Kristi's persecute other lesser known book bloggers for the same thing, yet they seem to be patting Kristi on the hand and bandying about that she's only human and people make mistakes. They are right about one thing, she is only human and she did make a mistake, but that doesn't excuse her behavior in the least little bit either. Nor does it give anyone the right to personally attack and/or bully her.
As individuals and human beings, we should be better than that. Tossing around words like "bullying" and "mob mentality" are just as cruel as the hashtag that was going around Twitter for those few days. If you're going to use those phrases and words, then you should be using them in the right context and not just out of anger and frustration. It only adds more fuel to the fire and incites further drama, taking away from the actual victims in this scenario. I believe that Kristi deserves every single bit of the backlash that she is getting, sans the "bullying" and the personal attacks. She did comitt plagiarism, she then lied about it, tried to keep it under wraps so that it wouldn't get out, and then when it did she concocted a half-apology filled with double-speak that wasn't necessarily filled with as much sincerity as it should have been.
The point of this post, is to remind everyone that Kristi and The Story Siren are not the victims in this unsavory situation. Please try and remember that, while you're holding her hand and supporting her for a job well done in plagiarism. Maybe I'm letting my own personal feelings cloud my judgement a little bit, because I never thought that I would feel a little bit of a sting myself regarding this subject in the book blogging community, but it's just not a cool thing to do to someone. It doesn't make them feel good and it takes a lot of time, energy, and hard work to blog consistently and to come up with well thought out content, features, and reviews that it doesn't seem fair that others would take advantage of it by claiming someone else's work, content, or idea's as their own. I've learned that in order to run a successful blog, you have to blog consistently, actually work to come up with the kind of content that your blog features, and to consistently stick with it. If you just blog sporadically, as in once a week or three times a month, then your blog just isn't going to be as successful as you'd like for it to be. It's also not going to be as creative and original as you'd like for it to be, by poaching other's idea's and implementing them as your own, as well.
So, this is why I am personally choosing to un-follow Kristi and The Story Siren in all ways possible, and I will not be participating in any of the meme's that her blog features any longer. That means that I will no longer be participating in the DAC 2012 Reading Challenge or the IMM (In My Mailbox) Feature, either. I will be coming up with my own version of the reading challenge for myself regarding all of the new debut releases that I have and will read this year and I will also be participating in another type of IMM feature. This decision wasn't influenced by anyone else or any other fellow bloggers that I may follow, this is my own two cents and my own personal choices after a great deal of thought put into it. I didn't make this post to stoke the fires of the recent drama, it wasn't meant as an attack against Kristi or The Story Siren, as I don't condone that type of behavior in any capacity. I am leaving the comments on, but I reserve the right to delete and/or moderate any comments that come across as viscious or in a threatening/attacking manner. Please, be mindful of this and think about what you're going to say and how you're going to say it.