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SBD/Issue 180/Sports Media
SI's Rick Reilly Claims ESPN Has Stolen Story Ideas From Him
Published June 13, 2007
|Reilly Feels ESPN Ripped
Off Some Of His Columns
An exchange from Dan Patrick’s ESPN Radio show last week illustrates the friendly tone of Reilly’s objection to ESPN taking ideas from his columns.
Reilly: “How about just once showing your little fuzzy lens shot of my column with, ‘as first heart-wrenchingly portrayed in Rick ...’ You know, nothing. I get no love from you guys.”
Patrick: “Do you consider it plagiarism?”
Reilly: “No. Hell no.”
Patrick: “Well, if they’re taking from your column, they’re taking your idea. What constitutes…“
Reilly: “If they were taking lines. Now, one time ABC 'Evening News' actually took three lines. … That’s not what ESPN does. I’m just saying, how about a little love?”
Patrick: “Do you ever give me credit in your column for ideas that I’ve given you?”
Reilly: “I’m trying to think of one idea that you gave me that worked. You’ve given me a lot of ideas, but …”
Patrick: “How about the column, ‘Things that you will never see,’ and you wrote an entire column on that?”
Reilly: “Oh yeah, sorry. That was pretty good. Thank you.”
Patrick: “OK, so you stole that.”
Reilly: “No. I changed it to ‘Sentences that have never been uttered. …’”
Patrick: “But see, once again, you stole from me, and I got no credit.”
Reilly: “…You’re right. You did the leg work” (“The Dan Patrick Show,” ESPN Radio, 6/7).
ANOTHER BEEF: The CHARLOTTE OBSERVER’s David Poole writes in his blog that while he was on ESPN2’s “NASCAR Now” yesterday to discuss Dale Earnhardt Jr.’s deal with Hendrick Motorsports, ESPN’s Erik Kuselias said on-air ESPN's Marty Smith "broke this story.” Poole: “I like Marty Smith a lot. He’s good. But ESPN didn’t even break wind on that story Tuesday. Smith, Jenna Fryer of the [AP] and I all three posted stories saying about the same thing at about the same time. It was about 2pm or so” (CHARLOTTE.com, 6/13).