New York – A Huffington Post blogger has filed a class
action lawsuit against the company, seeking $105 million in compensation for
the thousands of unpaid contributors to the site. Jonathan Tasini, who
previously helped lead a lawsuit where freelancers sought compensation for
digital publication of their works by The New York Times, has sued AOL (NYSE: AOL) in
addition to The Huffington Post and founders Ken Lerer and Arianna Huffington
on behalf of an estimated 9,000 contributors who have published content on the site without
"Arianna Huffington is pursuing the Wal-Martization of
creative content and a Third World class of creative people," Tasini said.
"Actually, that is unfair to Wal-Mart because at least Wal-Mart pays its
workers something for the value those workers create. In Arianna Huffington’s
business model, economic gain is only reserved for her. Everyone else,
apparently, is expected to work for free regardless of the value they create.
Greed and selfishness is the order of the day."
"Such a lawsuit would
be completely baseless," Huffington Post spokesperson Mario Ruiz told
"Our bloggers utilize our platform to connect and ensure that their
ideas and views are seen by as many people as possible. It’s the same reason
hundreds of people go on TV shows — to broadcast their views to as wide an
audience as possible."
(Los Angeles Times)