An Open Letter to Mike Rhyner, Plagiarist

Dear Mr. Rhyner:

Moments ago on your evening drive-time radio presentation on 1310 The Ticket, you did a roughly 12-minute segment on In-N-Out Burger’s impending arrival in North Texas. I was particularly interested in this topic, as it is the current cover story of the magazine I edit.

Imagine my chagrin when it became apparent that our story was, in fact, the inspiration for your segment, which you launched into with nary a mention of D Magazine. Now imagine my spleen filling with bile as I heard you read whole sections of our story and tell your listeners information about In-N-Out that we discovered — for instance, where In-N-Out’s first distribution center outside of California will be situated — without, again, ever once mentioning your source. Now imagine me texting your producer and co-host for the day, Danny Balis, as I careened through Lake Highlands, forcing other drivers off the road as my rage grew to the white-hot intensity of a coal gassification furnace.

Hey, I know how radio works. You’ve got segments to burn. You need topics. I don’t mind at all that you used our story for fodder. But would it have killed you to mention that you were reading from D Magazine?

A follow-up question: would it be cricket if I transcribed one of your segments — say, one in which you broke down the upcoming Rangers’ season and how you expect the team to perform — and then printed your words in our magazine without attribution? Too obvious an example? Too clearly a case of plagiarism? Okay. What if I just took one your ideas and printed it in our magazine without giving you credit? Would you be cool with that, Mr. Rhyner? Or would it kill you dead like the heavy rains and flooding of 2006?

In conclusion, I am deeply disappointed with the caliber of your work. While I will remain a loyal P1, my estimation of you as a broadcaster and as a man has fallen. I hereby challenge you to redeem yourself.

Best Waffles,

CC: Catman of the Americas

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