Hey ya’ll… looky here…

The seventy-comment-and-counting sparring match between Fecund Stench and those he labeled as “mental midgets” has certainly been a lively diversion for the past couple of days.  However, during the course of the discussion here and elsewhere, Stench (aka Jeff Martin) leveled serious allegations of wrong-doing on the part of some people within the local blogging community.  Those vague charges range from out-right theft of intellectual property to conspiracy to suspicions of ulterior motives on the part of some local webloggers

It is clear Martin did not develop these allegations on his own.  According to him, they were imparted to him during a meeting with Tara Sue, Ross Myers and perhaps others at Revolution Mill this past Wednesday following a Blogger Meetup event. 

This past Thursday night, after writing my post that was critical of Martin’s unfounded accusations, I was invited to meet with some of the “Revolution Gang” at an office at the renovated mill.  During this meeting, many of the same charges Martin made, and continue to make, were imparted to me by Tara Sue, Ross Myers and TheShu.  I accepted the invitation to meet with them on one condidtion – I would blog whatever I learned as long as it didn’t have to do with the details of their “business model” that, according to Tara and Ross, has been in the works for three years and will be launched by the end of this month.  Since I was not given any details of this “model” during the meeting, that condition will be easily honored.  Here are the charges and what I know of their varacity…

People or institutions  have “ripped off” ideas developed by those involved with the Revolution Mill efforts –

Ross Myers says that his group has met with many businesses, entities and individuals over the past three years to lay the ground work for whatever is going to be launch at the end of the month in order to garner their support.  Among those groups are the N&R (“a six-hour meeting around a table at the mill”, according to Ross), Action Greensboro, Roch Smith, Jr of Greensboro101.com and many others.  None of these meetings were fruitful in convincing any of the entities to work with Myers and company.

Ross stated that the N&R meeting (date unknown by me) was cordial and the representatives of the paper liked everything they saw but left saying something to the effect that “great idea, but it will never happen.”  From my recollection, Ross then stated that shortly after the meeting, the N&R launched their public square initiative.  A clear insinuation was made by Myers and Tara Sue that the N&R co-opted parts of their plans mainly having to do with somehow making money off weblog and similar citizen-media content.  TheShu went on to say that the N&R was following a familiar path of co-opting initiatives started by others.  I will leave it to TheShu to cite specific examples of what he was talking about, but I do know that none of these endeavors that were allegedly copied by the N&R over the years are currently in their mix of publications/efforts as far as I know.

The N&R has been very open about how they are setting up their “public square” to include citizen authored content.  A great example of this was today’s feature in the Ideas section built around local blogger David Wharton’s very fine online and offline writing.

Another clear insinuation was made that Roch Smith Jr., the creator of Greensboro101.com,



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