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18 February 2016

Huffington Post editor thinks journalism is only authentic when you don’t pay the writer

Yes, really.

By media mole

“I love this question,” said Stephen Hull, the editor-in-chief of Huffington Post UK, when Steve Hewlett asked him on Radio 4’s Media Show yesterday why he doesn’t pay his writers.

And this is the answer Hull apparently loves to give:

“If I was paying someone to write something because I want it to get advertising, that’s not a real authentic way of presenting copy. When somebody writes something for us, we know it’s real, we know they want to write it. It’s not been forced or paid for. I think that’s something to be proud of.”

Yes, a man who has literally made a career out of being paid to write and edit said this.

Your mole wonders how far the miserly head HuffPo honcho takes his logic. Presumably he can’t go out to eat at restaurants, because the food the (paid) chefs cook him is inauthentic. And when he’s ill, he must have to research his symptoms online instead of visiting a GP, because their salaries mean the diagnoses they give aren’t real. He must have to walk to work because of all those pesky salaried workers driving tube trains and buses, ruining the authenticity of the daily commute. 

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Maybe we’re being harsh on Hull, who doubtless draws no salary himself. Evidently he is just a lonely advocate for full communism who has accidentally found himself working for a global telecommunications behemoth. Poor man; poorer writers.