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Dino Costa’s website is plagiarizing everyone in sports, including us

Last week we published an exclusive report about Dan Patrick possibly returning to anchor an episode of SportsCenter as part of a larger idea to bring back past ESPN personalities.  So you can imagine my surprise when a link came into my inbox this morning to the website of eccentric sports talk radio host Dino Costa that didn’t just swipe part of that report, but copied it word for word without attribution.

No link, no author’s name, no acknowledgement of Awful Announcing.  No nothing.

Here’s our original story and the Costa link with a screengrab of the plagiarism below just for posterity’s sake.  Keep in mind that this isn’t just lifting or rewriting a paragraph here and there, this is copying an entire article and republishing it under a different title.

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It’s flattering to think Dino Costa is that big a fan of my writing and reporting skills.

More digging this morning uncovered the truth that I’m not the only victim of Costa’s copy and paste attributes.  In fact, pretty much every article on his website that’s listed under “Latest Sports News” has been lifted from somewhere else.

Just today alone on his Twitter feed, Costa has tweeted links to 10 different articles on his website that have been plagiarized in full.  You can tell it isn’t his original work because of the surprising lack of ALL CAPS in the body of the text.  Here are just three examples:

1) Dan Le Batard: Trust is the reason LeBron James covets playing in Miami more than anywhere else, Miami Herald

Le Batard: How much is trust worth?

How does LeBron James properly assign it a value?

James works with a coach who butts head with him and doesn’t care at all — at all — when James dislikes him or is mad at him. James also works with a coach who listens to him when the season is on the brink, makes a move James has requested and then lets James have all the credit for it afterward.

Costa: How much is trust worth?

How does LeBron James properly assign it a value?

James works with a coach who butts head with him and doesn’t care at all — at all — when James dislikes him or is mad at him. James also works with a coach who listens to him when the season is on the brink, makes a move James has requested and then lets James have all the credit for it afterward.

2) Jon Heyman: Mets’ hitting coach is first to take fall, and let’s hope Collins isn’t next, CBS Sports

Heyman: Hiring a new hitting coach and adding a new public relations person is very unlikely to make the Mets better, or seem better.

Neither will changing managers, which would appear to be at least a real thought now that the Mets have fired their hitting coach.

Manager Terry Collins isn’t in immediate jeopardy according to everyone around the Mets. But Collins, a baseball lifer, surely knows the Mets need something of a turnaround to get him to 2015. He deserves to make it there, but it’s anything but guaranteed at this point.

Costa: Hiring a new hitting coach and an adding a new public relations person is very unlikely to make the Mets better, or seem better.

Neither will changing managers, which would appear to be at least a real thought now that the Mets have fired their hitting coach.

Manager Terry Collins isn’t in immediate jeopardy according to everyone around the Mets. But Collins, a baseball lifer, surely knows the Mets need something of a turnaround to get him to 2015. He deserves to make it there, but it’s anything but guaranteed at this point.

3) Helene Elliott: Kings fans feel a Stanley Cup Final coming on, Los Angeles Times

Elliott: The chant burst out from Staples Center’s upper deck, home of the most passionate Kings fans, the ones whose loyalty outweighed their disillusionment during the team’s many bad years. The same ones who probably still don’t believe this unprecedented on-ice prosperity is real.

“We want the Cup!” they chorused during the first period Monday, a sudden and joyful song.

Costa: The chant burst out from Staples Center’s upper deck, home of the most passionate Kings fans, the ones whose loyalty outweighed their disillusionment during the team’s many bad years. The same ones who probably still don’t believe this unprecedented on-ice prosperity is real.

“We want the Cup!” they chorused during the first period Monday, a sudden and joyful song.

The entire list of outlets who had their work copied and pasted onto Costa’s website today without attribution is as follows: Miami Herald, CBS Sports, Los Angeles Times, Awful Announcing, Dallas Morning News, Minneapolis Star Tribune, St. Louis Post Dispatch, Washington Post, Charlotte Observer, and Sports on Earth.

At this point, I can’t even be mad about our article being plagiarized because I’m not sure Costa or whoever manages his website is aware that what they are doing is wrong or unethical.  They are just copying and pasting entire articles from newspapers, blogs, and elsewhere without a care in the world.  I’ve never seen serial plagiarism like this.  It’s laughable.

For the record, Costa was fired from his Sirius XM radio show in 2013 and is now offering his show to subscribers for $5.99 a month.  At least the audio is original.

UPDATE: Well, the fallout to this story was…. interesting, to say the least.  Scores of sportswriters and others took notice of Costa’s plagiarizing on Twitter with the most bombastic being Jeff MacGregor of ESPN.com threatening to get Bristol’s finest legal minds involved.

Costa took the bizarre tactic of retweeting plenty of individuals calling him out on his plagiarism and then tweeted an apology to me personally… while also calling me a moron.  I know, I know, I’ve given up trying to figure this out at this point.  Costa also called anyone taking issue with his practice of passing off others’ content as his own a “mental midget of epic proportions.”  Right out of the “How to Handle a PR Crisis for Dummies” handbook, that one!

Costa did it all today.  He battled writers on Twitter, he insulted people he was supposedly apologizing to, he apologized again, and he even bragged about how many followers and subscribers he picked up thanks to the most publicity he’s seen in eons.

There’s one thing Costa hasn’t done yet, though.  For what it’s worth, many of the plagiarized articles still appear in tact without attribution on Costa’s website and have not been taken down – including our article about Dan Patrick and Keith Olbermann that he plagiarized.  It’s a good thing we all learned so much today.  Learning is power.

Matt Yoder

About Matt Yoder

Managing Editor of Awful Announcing and award winning sportswriter. Bloguin consigliere. The biggest cat in the whole wide world.

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