Dear Minneapolis Soccer Examiner:

I found your piece on the NSC Minnesota Stars who’ve played in USA CUP (the research credit was not originally published) to be highly informative and well organized with some diverse examples of professional players who can call themselves tournament alumni. Then again, I often enjoy going back and reading my own writing, which is why I found it peculiar to see the skeleton of an article I wrote posted on examiner.com under YOUR byline.

Now, this should come as no surprise, as examiner.com produces quality journalism about as often as my wife, Emma Watson and Jessica Alba get together to tag team me in bed, which is to say … well, not as often as I’d like. You see, Minneapolis Soccer Examiner, the line between blogger and journalist gets thinner and hazier every day. It’s no longer as precise as the rule between columns in newspapers. It cannot be contained inside a mini DV case or burned onto DVD. There are outstanding writers who self-publish and never see a dime, and there are writers on staff at papers and magazines across the country who are ethically bankrupt and completely talentless.

The title “journalist” is unique for its accessibility: There is no qualifying exam to be a journalist; there’s no regulatory committee; there’s no license. Of all the important fields in this country’s history, journalist is one of the few titles that is truly self-ascribed. The modern journalist doesn’t earn his stripes by whether he’s paid, whether he’s widely read, or even whether he’s published, but rather by what he does when no one’s looking. In this regard, you have failed, and you’ve disgraced not only yourself but all your fellow journalists. When you look bad, we all look bad, and know that if you were working for me, Minneapolis Soccer Examiner, I would have fired you and run a retraction before your ass had even hit the pavement outside my newsroom. Enjoy your days in your current role. I fear that Minneapolis Soccer Examiner will be the highest post you ever attain, as labels like “plagiarist” and “fabricator” tend to stick around like herpes on a toilet seat.

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