Northeast Ohio Media Group Pulls Video of Editorial Board Interview with Governor Candidates

Threatens to Sue Blog That Posted Clip of Video

Remember when Gov. John Kasich bailed on the City Club's gubernatorial debate last week? Well, he managed to make it to Northeast Ohio Media Group HQ in downtown Cleveland the next day, and his body language spoke volumes. The NEOMG has provided audio of the editorial board interview, featuring Kasich ignoring Democratic challenger Ed FitzGerald throughout, but the media company has inexplicably taken down previously uploaded video of the event.

Lefty blog Plunderbund, seeing the value of the candidates' only face-to-face "debate"-ish, shared the video on its website. The clip is shot Zapruder-like, from above the conference room table and looking grainily toward the three candidates. Kasich, sans necktie, is leaning back in his chair and refusing to acknowledge FitzGerald's existence. He does look at Green Party candidate Anita Rios when she speaks, though.

When the video went up at Plunderbund, the NEOMG got mad. Chris Quinn, vice president of content at NEOMG, responded:
You have posted on your web site our copyrighted video of an endorsement interview in the Ohio governor’s race. You have not asked for, and we have not granted, the rights to use our property, which was illegally copied from our website.

We insist you delete the material immediately. We have registered the copyright, which means your illegal use of it entitles us to statutory damages, which can be quite steep, and recovery of all fees we pay our attorneys as we compel you to adhere to the copyright law.

We protect our copyrighted material with great vigor. You have posted it illegally. We expect immediate action in removing the video from your site.


Chris Quinn
Vice President of Content
Northeast Ohio Media Group
Meantime, the folks at Plunderbund are stepping back for a moment:
We believe the Plain Dealer and NEO Media Group, the PD’s non-union, online counterpart, have an obligation to the voters of Ohio to share the entire video interview, especially since they still chose to endorse John Kasich after his disrespectful performance during the interview. We implore them to restore the video.

We believe our posting of the video falls under the category of fair use, however we have temporarily removed the video while we discuss our options.
From the FitzGerald campaign: “While the Plain Dealer did Ohioans a service by demanding that Governor Kasich appear jointly with Ed FitzGerald at their editorial board meeting, they then robbed many Ohioans of their only chance to see Kasich and FitzGerald interact when they later inexplicably removed the video from their website. After nearly all statewide Republican candidates refused to debate, the Plain Dealer Editorial Board condemned the Republicans decision and pledged to make their editorial ‘interviews as transparent as possible — and as responsive to reader questions and concerns as possible.’ We hope they will live up to their pledge and restore the video to their website.”

The NEOMG/PD editorial board endorsed Kasich after the interview.
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Eric Sandy

Eric Sandy is an award-winning Cleveland-based journalist. For a while, he was the managing editor of Scene. He now contributes jam band features every now and then.
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