Thursday, June 22, 2006

Arianna Huffington is a Lying Liar. Here's the Proof.

Arianna has written a blog explaining why I was fired from the Huffington Post. I will now take that blog and respond, paragraph by paragraph. And I will not make allegations without proof, the way Arianna operates; instead I will prove beyond any reasonable doubt what really happened when Huffington Post shut down a whistleblower.

So here we go. I’ve posted her blog below, and inserted my comments in italics or documents in italics.

Setting the Record Straight: On Trolls, Moles, and Dis-Invited Bloggers

Dear HuffPost Readers, Commenters, and Bloggers,

Here's the bottom line on the issues raised by Peter Rost: We disabled his password for one reason and one reason only -- his refusal to act as part of our online community.

This is the first lie. I have never refused any suggestions from the Huffington Post, ever, which is also confirmed by what Arianna says below.

A little background: Peter Rost was initially invited to post about issues related to the pharmaceutical industry, his area of expertise -- but his posts increasingly became about his personal grudges and beefs or long, self-referential, diary-like entries about finding an injured bird in his front yard (complete with photos) or a blog post about his friend having an extramarital affair.

This is completely incorrect. I was asked to blog on Huffington Post, and told by Romi Lassally that I could blog as much as I wanted, whenever I felt like it about whatever I wanted. Arianna does not have one shred of evidence that I would only blog about the drug industry. And there was never any issue about bringing up my personal experiences, which she now calls “personal grudges.” In fact the situation was the opposite of what Arianna describes. Before starting I had to submit my fist blog, which clearly contains “personal grudges” since I use my firing and unemployment to write about unemployment, low wages, and high CEO pay. This is not a pharma blog. Here it is, “The New Robber Barons” Oh, I guess Arianna forgoooooooooot about that . . .

We suggested that this type of material might be better suited for a personal, individual blog -- a suggestion that Dr. Rost followed, creating this site.

No you did not suggest “this type of material might be better suited for a personal blog.” That was never even a discussion when Romi Lassally contacted me and she was later shocked that I had started a personal blog.

She simply e-mailed me and asked me to blog a bit less frequently, since you have so many bloggers. I asked if there was anything I could or should change and I, not Huffington Post, specifically sent a list of more personal blogs, such as the bird and the “cheating friend,” to get her advice.

She suggested the bird might be too personal, and never even mentioned “the cheating friend.” I actually had to pull ANY comment out of her. She did not criticize a single other blog post. And as a result of this, and to let readers know I started a personal blog, I wrote the blog, “I'm in Trouble With the Huffington Post

How do you know I’m telling the truth? Just click on the link and read that blog posting. I wrote it right after my conversation, one month ago and certainly didn’t know I had to use it to defend myself against Arianna’s lies. Here’s one paragraph from the post:

“I had to really push for detailed info, and finally the editor admitted that a few of my posts were, well, a bit too personal. And she told me that the blog about the "baby bird" we found might have been such a story, even though "it was read by many." And quite frankly I think this editor is right."

However, his penchant for airing personal grudges on HuffPost continued, becoming problematic when he devoted another long post to a personal attack on one of the commenters to his posts (one who happened to work for the Huffington Post), claiming that there was a vendetta against him, and that this employee was somehow gaming the system to give his comments greater prominence -- something that did not happen. (By the way, the employee, Andy Yaco-Mink, HuffPost's technology manager, wasn't an "anonymous heckler" as Rost claims -- he signed his comments "yacomink.")

I have never used the term vendetta, in fact I wrote in my post, "A Troll* inside Huffington Post?" the following, "But it wasn't what he wrote that interested me as much as what happened with what he wrote."

And I didn't know 100% that "yacomink" was Andy Yaco-Mink, until Arianna just admitted this. In fact, I ended my post, "There is also a possibility that there is an evil twin out there, and if so this could explain all this."

After the contact about the baby bird, there was not a single contact or complaint from the Huffington Post. Not one word that I wrote about "personal grudges," which may not be surprising, when you look at the list below.

What Arianna is doing here is typical for corporations who make an unethical decision; they try to blame it on something else. If there was any concern, why no e-mails or calls for a full month? Because I followed our agreement! From May 18 to June 16, I wrote the following blogs:

Bausch & Lomb Damage Control about problems with contact lenses.
Super Secret Secrets about internal fight for power at Pfizer.
$10,000 Fine If I Talk about how Pfizer tried to silence me.
Build the Wall! about illegal immigration.
God's Men: Guilty, Guilty, Guilty! about the Enron verdicts.
The FDA is Finished about corruption in the FDA.
Don't Trust Your Television News about corruption in television.
Pfizer Celebrity Lawyer Runs To Court to Shut Me Up about Pfizer going to court to really shut me up.
Take My Poll! Asking what readers want to read about on my blog. Here was the result:

Brides Gone Wild about daring bride photos.
Companies Snooping on E-mail about how companis snoop on employees.
My Blog in the News about a newsarticle on my blog.
How to Predict the Future about how to use demographic shifts to predict future.
Viagra for Children about Viagra used in children.
Ann Coulter is Laughing Her Head Off about Ann Coulter’s comments.
My Cheating Friend - 3 about my cheating friend.
Am I Crazy Paranoid . . . ? about the Rendon Group.
How a Public Relations Firm Helped Start the War about the Rendon Group.
Now I'm REALLY freaking out! about unusual visitors to my blog.
Are Many Companies Criminal Enterprises? about recent employee surveys on company ethics.

I think the list speaks for itself and many of the posts made the top five reader list. This is not a list with "personal grudges."

Here's how our comment ranking system works: There is a "best of" and "abusive" button next to each comment on the site. Anyone who comes to the site can vote. Each unique IP address can vote only once for a comment. You can vote for as many different comments as you like, but only once for each comment. After a comment has received a few "best of" votes, it goes into "readers' favorite comments" for the post. And this is what happened with Dr. Rost. We've looked at the data logs and Yaco-Mink's comment got the most "best of" votes from different, verifiable IP addresses. There was no manipulation.

The one error made on our side was when a junior editor, working the early shift, saw the post revealing personal information about one of our commenters/employees and took it down without consulting with anyone. He shouldn't have done that -- and as soon as our senior editors realized what had happened, they putmi the post back up.

OK, great you did look at the data. But you forgot that we are talking about your technology manager. Do you have any idea how easy it is to switch IP addresses in seconds for a professional using Dynamic Host Control Protocol? What this means is that the ISP has thousands of available IPs to hand out. All he has to do to fool the system is to disconnect from his ISP, then reconnect and he gets a different "verifiable IP address." And there is also software that does this for you. I guess your technology manger forgot to tell you about that. So of course you have found "verifiable IP addresses." You are in over your head Arianna!

I wrote in the blog that got me fired, “In order for the Huffington Post to maintain its credibility, the site needs to avoid even the appearance of a conflict of interest or rigged rankings. I don't know if the Huffington Post technology manager fiddled with the vote for his reply. After all, there is a 1.4% chance he won the ranking fair and square. But normally that would have taken at least a number of hours, on a day with lots of web traffic. But half an hour with low traffic?”

So I raised a question, not an accusation. And you did a “mistake” you say taking the blog off and when you realized that, you put it back.

Allow me to smile. The blog first went up about 9:36 am EST. It was censored within fifteen minutes. The first reply is stamped 1:25 EST, so it took about three hours to “discover” the mistake. Let me show you below what went on during those four hours.

We then contacted Dr. Rost, explained what had happened, apologized, and expressed to him that as we moved forward we hoped to avoid having these self-referential personal grudge posts on the site. He responded by doing the exact opposite of what we had asked -- posting a follow up to his earlier post that included more personal attacks. At this point, it was clear that Peter Rost had ceased acting as a member of our online community, where mistakes can be acknowledged and corrected, and was instead acting in an adversarial manner. We had course corrected when we discovered the mistake made by our junior editor; he chose not to course correct on the kinds of blog posts he was posting.

The statments in this paragraph are complete and utter lies. And here’s what really happened and I’ll simply copy the back and forth between me and Romi Lassally at Huffington Post:

----Original Message Follows----
From: "Peter Rost"
Subject: URGENT
Date: Tue, 20 Jun 2006 10:03:09 -0400

I think you may have a serious internal problem, which needs to be investigated. The credibility of the Huffington Post is at stake.

This was confirmed when my blog, which simply described the facts, rapidly disappeared from Huffington Post. Please note that I only described facts, no ad hominem issues.

Please see blog on my private site and comments from readers:

----Original Message Follows----
Subject: Re: URGENT
Date: Tue, 20 Jun 2006 10:34:23 EDT

Will look into. Thanks.

----Original Message Follows----
From: "Peter Rost"
Subject: Re: URGENT
Date: Tue, 20 Jun 2006 11:08:08 -0400

Appreciate that. Seriously, what makes the Huffingon Post so great are all the replies and conflicting opinions. Conflict sells newspapers and also drives readership for the Huffington Post.

So if I were you I'd see both the blog I wrote, as well as what happened to it (censored by someone) as a business opportunity, for you to do an article about the whole thing. If your tech guy took it off the air this is serious. If an editor did it it's a different story, but still questionable, since I simply stuck to the facts.

By covering this on your news page, people will realize the Huffington Post has distance to itself. And since the blogosphere is what it is and since you guys are almost the Microsoft of the blogs, if you DON'T pick up on this others will. You want to be the ones in charge of this news story.

It's a win-win. Huffington Post will get more visibility, do the right thing, whatever that is, and life goes on. I wrote this for entertainment, but also so I wouldn't have someone mess with my blog in the future . . . now suddenly things got more interesting.

----Original Message Follows----
Subject: Re: URGENT
Date: Tue, 20 Jun 2006 12:14:11 EDT

Can you call me in abt 10 minutes? Or send me you number. I'm away from my

I was away for lunch and didn’t return until 1 pm, by that time my blog was back up again, and I published the blog Hurrah! I'm Back On HuffPo! 1:14 pm. Check the date stamp in my HuffPo archive!

I had not been in contact with Romi.

In my blog I supported HuffPo and wrote, “I don't know what made this happen, but I think HuffPo just made a brave move. After all, what makes this site so great is that it is open to all kinds of opinions, in a way most newsmedia would never dare to operate.” I also added replies to my private blog of upset readers, but I did not use any bad languague. I was supportive of HuffPo!

Then, according to my phone log, Romi called me at 9:01 GMT, (Greenwhich Mean Time) which is 5:01 EST. This was the first time I spoke to Romi directly on that day. The only call before that is from a different number on that day. Can I prove this? Sure. Compare Romi's phone number in e-mail above with my phone log:

When she called she simply said we should take a “break” with my blogging, which I agreed to, since I figured they had to investigate the situation.

Next follows the e-mail I sent to Romi in the evening, when I discovered they had locked me out.

----Original Message Follows----
From: "Peter Rost"
Subject: Re: URGENT
Date: Tue, 20 Jun 2006 20:53:14 -0400

Dear Romi:

You told me to take a break, which of course I respect. But then I checked in on my site to approve comments. I was locked out. Couldn't get into any of them and simply watched as someone else deleted comments I could never read.

When someone is locked out of a business it is not called a break . . . it is called to be fired, which is a very long break. But perhaps HuffPo doesn't want it to look that way. And I was fired without any investigation, simply for telling the truth, just six hours after my offending blog. Not even a big drug company would handle something like this that way.

You could have asked me not to blog, then investigated the situation and then made a decision. But you didn't. You decided there was no problem without any investigation and then shut down the whistleblower. And you told me you didn't even read my blog!

I do hope you realize how this will make HuffPo look; you've built your business on exposing misdeeds, but you immediately fired a guy who supports you when he questioned if your ranking system could be abused and made available images and factual information a HuffPo employee had posted on the net.

Based on my lock-out, clearly I will write about this, and our phone call. There is simply no reason not to cover this.


----Original Message Follows----
Subject: Re: URGENT
Date: Tue, 20 Jun 2006 21:14:38 EDT

Oh Peter.....I write this at the risk of knowing you could print it verbatim,
but I sincerely hope you will not. I think we both have enjoyed and
benefited from the last three months of your blogging on Huffington Post. I hope
you know that all my efforts on your behalf have been genuine and that I don't casually take on writers to help with their work. I have been an advocate of yours - both online and off- and am offended that you feel I have mistreated you.

Please know that I am an employee of Huffington Post. As you know from our
dealings, I am not well versed on technical issues and am not in charge of how
posts are arranged on the site or how passwords are given/changed.

Please don't shoot the messenger here -Despite the fact that I was away from
my computer this morning, I brought you into the Huffington Post and
therefore I was the one who had to make the call to you today. I apologize for not
being more direct with you on the phone - a break was perhaps too gentle a
word, but frankly it was the only one I could find during our conversation.
You have not been "fired" but rather asked to refrain from posting as our
editorial staff felt that your recent blogs were not in line with the mission of our
site. And honestly, you seemed quite unhappy with us in your last posting -
so a parting of the ways seems like the right thing to do for now.

Again, I ask that you not print this out of respect for our professional
relationship. Please email or call if you'd like to discuss this further.


----Original Message Follows----
From: "Peter Rost"
Subject: Re: URGENT
Date: Tue, 20 Jun 2006 22:51:54 -0400

Romi, oh, Romi . . . :

What a sad ending. Yes, I think I have helped HuffPo a lot, the monthly stats showed that I had almost 10% of the readership. And after all this is what counts, since you live off advertisers. What is so sad is that this is a similiar situation to Pfizer. I had the number one performance in the entire company, measured by sales vs. forecast, but that didn't matter once I spoke out about illegal business practices, just like my readership numbers didn't matter when I did one blog which questioned something inside HuffPo.

Because clearly, if it hadn't been for the blog today, this would not have happened, we both know that. No one has complained about my recent "blogs." On the contrary, they have really supported what you do, just take a look. And instead your organization protects what may be a bad internal situation. You don't even investigate before taking action against me.

You say that you were just the messenger, so I think it would be fair if you told me who made this decision. Since you are a small company, I would assume based on what you wrote, that Arianna Huffington made the call. Am I wrong? There aren't really any other people between you and her . . .

All the best,

----Original Message Follows----
Subject: Re: URGENT
Date: Tue, 20 Jun 2006 23:04:58 EDT

We are small, but there are several people who work alongside me this
was not an Arianna call. Ultimately, the decision was an editorial one - not
one person to be held responsible -- really. So no name calling out there if
you must air all of this.


And with this I have just proved that Arianna Huffingon is LYING. At NO time did I refuse anything HuffPo asked me to do. I did not continue to blog after I was told not to do so. There are date stamps on everything, my blog, e-mails and phone log verifying this.

As I have just conclusively proven, using e-mails from Huffington Post, none of what Arianna described in her blog took place. I never spoke to anyone from HuffPo before doing my final, cordial blog in which I spoke well of HuffPo.

At that point, we felt we had no choice but to withdraw his password. A decision we don't take lightly. Indeed, it's something we've never done before in the 13-plus months since we launched the Huffington Post.


When someone of Arianna Huffington's stature publicly accuses you the way she accused me in her blog, the truth is the best disinfectant. I have just proven to the world that Arianna Huffington is an opportunistic, lying liar.

Unfortunately, the story doesn't end here. It gets worse.

This is what two Huffington Post readers just wrote about Arianna’s blog on my blog:

Anonymous said...
Holy shit. I just saw the comments on Arianna's response go from 49 to 43. They still haven't posted my 3 comments. And they're deleting ones they already posted. This is bad. I think Arianna is really shooting herself in the foot on this one. It doesn't look good that she's in Cannes at an advertising awards show hobnobbing with people who give her more than a mil a year for ad space.

Rev. Joker Cross, KSC said...
This is idiocy.Thrice have I attempted to comment on Arianna's article, and thrice have I been rebuked. I have noticed that supportive comments that were there earlier are now gone.So I posted this at my blog.


Humour and last laugh said...


Anonymous said...


All of my comments didn't make the cut either and I watched as the numbers dropped too.

Fascinating as all hell. Arianna is acting EXACTLY like the Bush Administration. Getting rid of any thing that might reflect unfavorably upon them.

One still suspects Arianna herself doesn't know about this due to the incredibly stupid comments being made in SUPPORT OF HER COMMENTS.

I have been on that site since inception and didn't recognize 90 percent of those names. NOT that I watch for all names but after a year of reading comments and I READ THEM ALL, you start to recognize names and practically none of them jumped out.

Clevelandchick stood out but then again I have always wondered about her posts, they are ALWAYS in agreement with whatever the blogger is saying.

Could be wrong, but...things that make you go hmmmm.

IF indeed Arianna is truly NOT aware of everything, then her staff is probably sweating bullets right now hoping against hope she is too busy rubbing shoulders with the rich and famous while they try and clean up the mess by getting rid of any comments that talk about it.

Time for a total housecleaning at Huffingpost, but they have lost me as a reader and poster until then.

Anonymous said...

Bwaaahahahahaha. You posted not only the email, you posted her phone #!!! She can delete our comments all she wants, but she's going to have to get a new phone #. Cunt.

Anonymous said...

Oh shit! That's her real number! It goes straight to voicemail though. Hahahaha. Everyone should leave a nice message. Doc, you rock!

Anonymous said...

I tried to post this 4 times under Arriana's article under different names (i already know how to disguise my ip address doc..thanks anyway) no joy these are being read in advance....

What a load!! Either your own editors or tech staff have bamboozled you with the science or you just don’t get it.
Someone is definitely manipulating the ratings on your reply system. Everyone who has ever attempted to post a reply here more than once knew that before Rost ever uncovered your tech troll; he just revealed the most likely culprit.
Allowing a staff web tech, who can control the layout of your site, to post replies openly or anonymously would be the same as allowing the typesetter for an editorial page in an old newspaper to have his own letter to the editor column every day. I wonder where his column will end up and what will happen to those letters or columnists who disagree with him. He is not an editor!
I don’t really care about the differences you have had with Rost offerings before: Firing him for uncovering what your tech was doing was wrong!
Your site has become the Star magazine of the internet.
I am going back to Kos.

god luck doc, I wasnt kidding...I am through with puffhost. I think I already know enough about Paris Hilton and Tom Cruise anyway....

Anonymous said...

Well Doc, looks like you have one thing left to do, see if YOU can get a piece of the JWT mula. I volunteer to be a troll (for a small fee) cause you know, people luv controversy.

Anonymous said...

Yakko looks like a troll:

Anonymous said...

Holy shit! The comments just jumped from 52 to 72!

Anonymous said...

Man. They were censoring this whole time. Of the 5 or so comments I posted, only the mildest one got through. Not any of the ones saying this would be my last day on the HuffPo made it. I guess that's not good for business. Whores.

Anonymous said...

Just went from 72 to 63. I guess some comments didn't make the cut. I'll see if mine's still there. I don't think my new one will make it either.

Anonymous said...

Just went from 72 to 63. I guess some comments didn't make the cut. I'll see if mine's still there. I don't think my new one will make it either.

Anonymous said...

Fuckers. My comment just got axed. Fuckers.

Anonymous said...

Down to 58 now. This is so fucking wrong. Right out in the open too. Just like Bush and Cheney.

Anonymous said...

I read all the comments when it went from 52 to 72, before they deleted some, and none used profanity, or was insulting, or was personally attacking anyone. The only common denominator is they all thought Arianna was wrong on this issue. I guess that doesn't fly in a Fascist organization. Or is there some other comment policy I'm not aware of?

Anonymous said...

I can sorta see why you were fired from your Pharm job!

Anonymous said...

59 now. They let another anti Rost comment by krose post.

Anonymous said...

I guess they post them in batches. So a little after 1AM eastern time, they posted 20 comments and axed 13 of them over the next few minutes. 7 cleared the censors. I bet it's easier to publish dissent in China.

Anonymous said...

Oh well, my comment at HuffPo never saw the light of day.

What I pointed out, aside from the usual "this is not the way to handle problems, conflict of interest" stuff, is that it's particularly important for a political site to be squeaky clean. Think about it - I just signed up to post, and now they have my name, email address and zip code. That's more than enough data for a good techie to find out everything he wants to know about me. Do you really feel comfortable knowing that one of their top programmers thinks it's ok to post childish snarky comments, and the boss doesn't have a problem with it? What else might he think is acceptable behavior?

I think Rose may be right, that Arianna didn't write that post, but it's a little hard to fathom that these people would think they could get away with speaking for her like that. She *has* to find out. So I think the odds are it actually was her and she was just writing in a hurry (can't miss any of the partying in Cannes!), even though I would like to believe it wasn't.

I will say I think this post (the one I'm commenting on now) goes a little bit too far in exposing the phone number and e-mail address of someone at HuffPo. I think it's important to keep to the high road in these situations, and that's stooping dangerously close to their level. IMHO, of course.

Anonymous said...

Man. I just realized the whole editorial staff (and Yakkko too I bet) stayed really late (past 1AM) coming up with fake postings supporting their view and when they thought we were all asleep (you have to wait 3 more hrs for PST assholes), they tried to sneak some real comments in along with the fake ones (you can tell because they post with no delay) but they had to kill 13 out of 20 because they were too accusatory and true. Look at the writing styles of peole like january13, imfedup, sissie, wldnswmmr, or tj. They all make the same lame arguments. It's like 3 or 4 people sat there and came up with bullshit posts to trying to salvage what's left of their jobs. Arianna better get her head out of her ass and come clean some house. Looks like she's been infiltrated by our friends at Rendon. Arianna, if you don't shitcan these people, we shitcan you.

Anonymous said...

Ok. Someone named "Raven" just posted. It's 11:20pm here so it's 2:20am in NYC. Who the fuck is in the office approving this propaganda comment? She actually calls Dr. Rost the troll! That's typical republikkkan strategy. What? No mention of Gutfield? Dr. Rost's post seem trollish but Gutfield gets a pass? Does anyone doubt that Raven is really Yakkko? How come "she" gets to post at 2:20 in the morning and it gets approved? Is she a "special" commmenter? You know. A troll? Read her post. You decide.

Anonymous said...

You're right. I noticed the same thing. Similar styles and the comments against the Dr. are so fake as to be laughable.

Nothing like watching a good blog site self destruct.

The trolls are posting more and more over there.

I really hope a boycott by liberals makes Arianna wake the hell up.

I just don't know if other sites would go along. I mean DailyKos and about a dozen others could make all the difference in the world.

No posting there.

Anonymous said...

Dammit. I realized I should have saved all the comments I tried to post. I spent time composing them. I would post them here or anywhere else so people could see there was no reason for censorship according to their stated comments policy. Oh well. I'm going to try to not give them any more traffic from tomorrow on. I didn't realize they make $120-$145K a month per ad. That's right, that's a K. As in 1000. There's usually 2 ads per page. That's well over a million a yr on just their banner ads. All because we traffic her site. And now that she's in Cannes getting paid, she wants to treat us like retarded kids? She wants to treat a blogger who accounts for 10% of her traffic like a retarded kid? Did you ever pay Dr. Rost a dime for the traffic he generated for you Arianna? Or were you too busy flying around all over the place kissing ass? Man. I am so mad. Get your ass back here and fix this shit bitch, or the next time I see you in person, I'm going to spit in your FACE!

Anonymous said...

Not likely you'll get much cooperation from sites as big as DailyKos. They share financial interests. One going down is literally detrimental to the other. We're just talking money here. A link from HuffPo, which averages 1-2 million unique visitors a month, is a huge boon for any site. For sites like DailyKos which have already systems in place to convert traffic into dollar profits, pissing off the HuffPo is a bad business decision. So unfortunately, I think the mainstream leftie sites are going to be disinclined to boycott the site that partially feeds them. But people are free to do what they choose. All the industry collusion in the world won't save any of them if they get no traffic from people like you and me. If it's wrong, don't support it. I stopped reading the NYT as soon as they stood behind Judy Miller's bullshit. I've been reading them since College. I know my money doesn't make or break them, but I also know I'm not contributing directly to their evil and a clear conscience is a great thing to have.

Anonymous said...

This is very disturbing. There are trolls at Huffpo (paid? I dunno) who post there every single day, night and day. 99 percent of what they post are simply juvenile, ad hominem attacks. They are never banned.

I've been a life-long Democrat and I was banned and I'm still not 100 percent sure why. All I did was smack around a few trolls.

The only rationale I could come up with is that Huffpo *encourages* the trolls because the inevitable fur that flies every time one posts something incredibly inflammatory simply generates revenue for Arianna.

It's looking like a Huffpo boycott is in order. Perhaps when all she has are republican trolls visiting her site she'll get a clue.

There's a reason that Daily KOS does not suffer trolls. Arianna has yet to learn that lesson and apparently encourages them because the democrats are getting banned and the trolls are allowed to stay.

It's sad.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

They're not censoring other threads. Either that or the author gets to censor and Arianna's aides don't get to mess with those (until Yakkko gets back in the morn). I just posted on another thread, and I linked this site and it got through. Normal speed.

Mort Snerd said...

I knew HuffPo censored comments, but when I started seeing folks tell and link to your story I wondered who opened the asylum doors. After reading through your accounts, I'm shocked at how you were treated. Your articles were always informative, entertaining and in good taste.

Guess there's some truth to the conspiracy theory of paid trolls. And even more truth to censorship and the careful cultivation of hostility and paranoia on Huffington Post. It's too bad. You gave them credibility while you were there.

Warmest regards,

Anonymous said...

This is in reply to the anonymoose person (I do wish you would put SOME name up so I can make sure the reply is properly directed.

BUT I don't pretend to understand how the money machine works for advertising on places like Kos and Huffpost, so I would love it if someone would explain exactly how that works.

Nonetheless it only takes people to stop posting and getting the word out as much as possible and leave the site to the trolls and then see if Arianna wakes the hell up.

Because I still think she didn't write that response. Especially for someone who attacks the Bushies for shooting the messenger and ignoring the message.

Thanks Doc for letting us post about this over here even though I know you have other issues to talk about.

Anonymous said...

Sites earn money through traffic. The more traffic, the more advertisers are willing to pay to be on the site. Just like TV and viewership/ratings. It doesn't really matter what type of people are on the site because advertisers have no way of distinguishing them. They just look at the big totals and hope to cash in on a percentage of those people. The bigger the total, the better the chance they will affect more people with their advertising. If google sold banner space on their search homepage, they could easily charge $1 mil a month and there'd be multiple takers.

And just so you know, Rosethejet, HuffPo gets obscene traffic. 1 to 2 million unique views a month. Accrodingly, they make obscene money. They charge $120,000 to $145,000 a month per ad. They display 2 ads per page. Do the math.

Anonymous said...

Holy Shiite.

I had no idea. I mean I knew they made money but lordy that is some serious cash for letting it slide into oblivion.

So it seems she is more interested in protecting her cash vs her integrity.

So sad.

BUT another question, could a good techie manipulate the numbers? Is there any good way to make sure the numbers are honest?

Such a shame as I had high hopes for Huffpost, but the trollz are taking over and it's become very unpleasant to spend all your time reading nasty, insulting and lying remarks from the trollz and then have to put up with crooked techies on top of that?

Arianna is just another media whore. I've about lost all respect for her. Can't believe I supported her losing bid for governor of CA.

We'll see how this plays out, but Huffpost has lost me.

Anonymous said...

He's not just a techie. He runs the servers. There's two. One is Jonah Perreti who is actually a co-founder and the technology director. Apparently, they're friends.

They even work(ed) together on other projects.

That means the pressure to not fire yakkko could be coming from Jonah.

As far as what he can do, he can do anything. As a server operator, he would have to have root access. Not only can he mess with the numbers, he can even change your comments if he felt like it. Having root password on a server is like being God. You have full control of whatever happens on that machine. You could even delete the whole server. I'm sure they back up, but in his position, I'm sure he can run the backup tapes over some magnets too. So saying someone in that position should not be allowed to make political statements in the posts would, at the very least, seem prudent.

Or maybe his real job is to agitate people so they keep posting comments which will increase the time they're on the site and the total traffic count and their revenue.

I don't know. All I know is, if Arianna can defend the writings of Danielle Crittenden and Greg Gutfield over Dr. Rost's, then she's either crazy or shes got another agenda. But I do agree with you that my first hunch is that she didn't even write that response. It doesn't fit her writing style - it seems like the kind of writing/logic those weird one time commenters shine at. Maybe "they" explained the situation to her their way and gave her something to sign. Maybe they got Jonah to help them. I'm sure being co-founder carries some weight. All I know is, Arianna seems too smart a lady to be making this big a PR blunder unless she's too busy to see what's really going on. Even if what she supposedly wrote is how she really felt, I would think she'd be smart enough to find a better time and place to air her grivences. I mean the timing could not possibly be any worse. I don't think you need to know much about PR to figure that out.

But who knows? Maybe the money has gotten to her. We're not talking peanuts here. Even if the viewship steadly drops for the next 10 years, she would still make more than a comfortable living doing this. Maybe axing Yakkko means problems with Jonah which she cannot afford. You can fire employees, but you can't fire co-founders. Maybe she doesn't want to rock her million dollar boat. Actually, it's more like a multi-million dollar yacht, but I digress.

Anonymous said...

I got some more info on Ad revenue. I orignially got the Huffpo #s from a guardian article:,,1799294,00.html

Registration is free if they ask you to.

This is a link to what the other liberal blogs are charging. It's not even close. Make sure you're looking at month versus week, but it still won't be close:

If there ever was a fat cat of the liberal blogging world, HuffPo takes the cake, eats it, and spits the reminents in your face.

Nate said...

Oh my lord what utter drivel. Having to trudge through your post and all your assertions and "proofs" demonstrating how you were violated by those dasterdly villians over at the Evil Huffo was the equivelant of shaving my head with a cheese grater while chewing on tinfoil!

I finally made it down to your email exchange and when I read the email, printed verbatum in which it very politely asked you not to re-print it while accepting the fact that you might (which of course you did) I realized the kind of 'stuff' you're made of. Seeing that you would post someone's phone number which they sent you in confidence should be proof enough of your low character but the rest of your post confirms it a dozen times over.

How did you, a person with so little to say, ever get a job at Huffpo in the first place. The only thing this fella Peter should be criticized for is giving you a Soap Box the size of Huffpo in the first place. You are living, breathing proof that a Ph.D doesn't give someone character.

Way to go Arianna and Huffpo. Sorry it took you so long to figure out what a chump you'd brought on board.

And for the record, I maintain a large blog myself and write Op-Eds for one national and one local paper. If this comment "disapears" from your comments section, I'll make sure my readers and the readers at Huffpo are well aware of it.

Anonymous said...

riiiiiight. we believe you. leave.

Anonymous said...

I guess you didn't read anything leading up to the email exchanges. Why would you? You're just a self-proclaimed journalist. So you know, Dr. Rost didn't post that until Arianna posted her response first. Why should he be civil to some assholes who just unfairly fired him? It's not like they ever gave him a dime of their millions which in part was due to his contribution. Did you get that part about him averaging 10% of the site's total volume? What's your cut I wonder. You say you're a journalist, but judging by your post, you must not be making much being a journalist. What is the salary range for shills?

Rev. L. said...

What the hell is going on over there? I mean really? I'm with Rose on this one. The trolls are more than problematic. They take a good deal of pleasure out of reading the site, and no one seems inclined to do much of anything about it. Meanwhile liberal commenters are being banned? I don't get it.

I watch the comments on articles I'm interested in, especially when I've posted a comment. It's that warm fuzzy feeling you get when you get a "Best of", and I've gotten more than a few in my time. Today I watched a lot of comments appear then disappear off of that post, including no less than three "where the hell is my comment" comments from various people.

I've been growing weary of the site lately anyway. So much fluff news about idiot celebrities that it makes me want to jab a damn pencil into my eye is going on most of the time I just skim the headlines and only read about 10% of the actual posts anymore. Maybe check out the comments. I hardly ever click through to "Read the whole story" anymore because most of the time I simply don't care, and usually when I do I find that the headline and the story are only passingly acquainted with each other.

I wonder how much Arianna actually does around there anymore. And how can a woman who has previously been pretty clear about her massive Blackberry addiction be "unavailable" in Cannes?

And you're right about IP addresses, Doc. Easy to change. Easy as pie.

Anonymous said...

Sad sad sad. The only posts getting through now are trolls calling regular disappointed readers trolls. That's so not obvious. I guess all these supposed readers aren't noticing comments appearing and disappearing all day. Maybe they're happy about the censorship because only our comments are disappearing. Maybe Yakkko needs to go home and get some sleep so he can deal with the shit storm tomorrow.

Anonymous said...

And how the fuck does the Arianna's response not make top post? There's already 65 comments AFTER all the censoring! Blake's article about Hamptons vs Osama is really that popular with regular people? Really? There's only 35 comments and no favorites. It's been up there all day. Who are these people?

Anonymous said...

I'm a section editor with a national magazine and I've got to say this whole saga shows up the weaknesses of internet publishing. I think Peter was right to be concerned about what was going on with the comments on his posts, but I don't think that screaming about it immediately on his blog was the way to rectify it. I would have raised those concerns with the publishers (ie Huffington) in confidence and leave it in their court to sort out. If they still didn't clear things up, then you could say you were going to raise the issue in public. Well that's how we'd expect stuff to be done at our weekly magazine. But on a daily blog where there is little editorial oversight, this concern blew up immediately into a confrontational slanging match before anyone had had chance to sit down and talk about it.
My initial symapathy for Peter has gone, given the way he has conducted this dispute entirely in public. In our magazine, this is the kind of thing that would go in in the editor's office with the door closed. Huffington is also to blame for not picking up on what has been happening on her site, and also for not being around to sort the mess out before it developed into a crisis. But that's the internet for you. Instant publishing, instant mistakes and instant dismissal. When you are publishing in the wink of an eye, quality control doesn't get a look in.

Anonymous said...

Peter. I love your writing and will read your blog from now on. The problem with Huffington Post is that they can't stand an independent thinker like you. Couple that with the fact that you're German, and the writing was on the wall. Only Jews get a voice on HuffPo. Keep up the good work!!

Anonymous said...

Congrats on getting the truth out and exposing them.

I pine for the day when liberals still believed in liberty. When freedom of speech meant for everyone.

The Left is not liberal, they don't believe in freedom of speech (Look at any communist or socialist country, or even Europe). All the friends I have that I think are truly liberal are all registered Libertarian and vote Republican (though they might switch soon with the spend-craziness of Repulicans lately).

Anonymous said...

Dr Rost:
Something interesting you may want to know about. Yesterday right after Arianna posted her reply, I posted a comment. I watched the page for about 20 minutes, constantly refreshing it to see the changes. I watched my post drop from #3 spot down much lower but still on the first page. In that time refreshing I was able to continually click the "best of" link and as a result my posting was shot up to #1 on the best of comments. I am quite sure that people didn't find my response nearly as interesting as others that were on there, so what's the deal? (I am rcdl on huffpo, btw)

I use Firefox and when refreshing I used the Shift button, which allows the browser to reload the page from the server rather than the cache.

I'll grant Arianna a pass on not firing her technology manager for posting a comment on her site (that's ok in my book) but he SHOULD be fired for creating something with so many holes in it that it resembles swiss cheese! Seriously, I did nothing other than what i mentioned previously (no IP spoofing or anything) yet my boring, uninteresting and confusing (the href command doesn't work so the links I had don't really make sense without actual links) comment was spoofed to the top by 1 single IP address.

Anyway, thought you'd be interested in that... if you would like to discuss further I can be contacted at rcokely at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

Dr. Rost, I just tried it again and managed to put another comment (not mine) up to the "best of" section using the same method as I described before. I feel bad because it was a bad comment towards you, but it was the closest one on the page. In any case, there is a serious security hole when it comes to Firefox and that application they use. My guess is that they set a client variable (like a cookie) but it probably only works with Internet Explorer. So download Firefox and shoot any comment you want straight to the top!

Anonymous said...

Quite honestly the only HuffPo I read is the secret Greg Gutfield blog in his bio. But I just read about your experiences and coupled with what just has been revealed about the Daily Kos and his attempts to control independent comment, more and more people will come to the realization of the Orwellian stance of the people in the forefront of the liberal/progressive blog and other movements, their phoney freedom of speech proclamations, only if you agree with them, and that these emperors are hypocrites and have no clothes.
I don't know where your politics lie, but maybe this personal experience will lead you to examine other progressive libels that you may have taken for granted as the truth.

Anonymous said...

I think the thing that saddens, and worries, most serious people is hypocrasy, and duplicity. The issue we're discussing here, I've been yelling from the rooftop for a long time. But you know what? It's like one hand clapping. Or better yet, "when a tree falls in the forest" know the rest. After watching my posts a) get posted b) not get posted c) get posted hours or days later, and being ignored countless times when inquiring on her "contact us" link, I realized what suckers we all are. After bouncing around for years, grabbing any guest shot on tv she could, trying so desparately to find some way to be accepted by the Beautiful people," and failing, she finally stumbled upon the perfect vehicle. The Blogosphere, made up (mostly) of wonderful people, right or left, who who were tired of the canned bullshit in most media, who simply wanted an open and free forum to "air it out." Arianna took one look, screamed "Eureka" to her legion of sycophant "associates" and said, "I got it!" "With my inherited millions and a bunch of naive fools out there begging to be conned and fleeced, I'll get what I always wanted. Thus was born the Huffington Post.
Taking a cue from how george bush did it, the rest was easy. How anyone with an ounce of integrity would agree to becoming a blogger for her is testimony as to how many fools are willing to be used as props for this truly disgusting wretch. She is Karl Rove, Paris Hilton, and Splashdown, all-in-one. Shame, shame, shame.

Anonymous said...

Comments on Arianna's post now down to 13 as of 11:00 cst. Down from what 72 earlier?
For those of you mad at the doc for posting that editors phone number, go to ariannas article, click on the one of the links in the body of the article and you will see docs phone number...they did it first.

Anonymous said...

My post on Huffpo:


I'm a straight talker, and I'm not a fan of all that is said here - by either bloggers or posters.

But I support Arianna here.

As someone who lost a family member because of the pharma industry's malpractice - and who also consulted to that industry - I was intensely interested in what Peter Rost had to say as a whistleblower.

However, it became increasingly clear to me that Rost had some kind of problem that I'll call narcissism for lack of a better term.

Everything he wrote seemed very self-referential. For me, the straw that broke the camel's back, and got me publicly involved in calling him, was his post "tricking" people into responding to him - in any way - based on his saying things that were simply provocative.

If I want to get jerked around by manipulative marketing people, I don't need to come here. There are plenty of other places to go.

More than that - the subject he was talking about is near and dear to my own still grieving heart. It was wrong - dead wrong - for him to co-opt for his own ego strokes.

I still think Rost is doing a service here - but he reveals himself as a very flawed whistleblower indeed - which bodes well for those who are trying to shut him up altogether.

For a real compare and contrast, I refer you to another Dr Peter - this one named BREGGIN - who has spent his entire career HONORABLY fighting the same folks Rost began jousting with a short while ago. Breggin is the real deal - a real Ralph Nader, dogging the pharma industry relentlessly for decades - and all their attempt to shut him up and shut him down have proved fruitless.

Diogenes still prefers an honest man.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

hey anon, when you put in big cap letter "supporting arianna here" is that the same as in Cool hand Luke when the guys on the chain gang had to say "pickin it up here boss" to keep from getting shot; because I noticed your reply shot right to the top on puffhosts site....

Anonymous said...

Dr. Rost,

Even easier than reassigning your ip address to one in your dhcp pool (leaves a record behind an IT forensic expert can find) or going to places with wi-fi connections (very very slow and you said the ranking occured in a half hour) is the simple use of proxies.

Basically, you can think of using a proxy as means of call forwarding. So you call the proxy, which has it's own IP address, and it calls HuffPost. HuffPost sees the proxy ip, not yours.

The use and abuse of proxies has had a long and storied past on the internet by trolls, scammers, harassers, DDOSers, spammers, irc takedown kiddies, and others. There are a number of automated tools out there to use them and websites that publish so-called public proxy ip addresses.

I would recommend you do NOT use a public proxy to check your email or do your internet banking.

HTH (Hope this helps)

Anonymous said...

And another thing. I meant to mention it earlier, but I have NEVER seen a single ad ON Huffho.

I have this program that I am sure a lot of you have but everyone should have it that blocks EVERY ad from showing up on my screen.

I disabled it to see what I was "missing" and holy Christ, the place is over run with ads. I reenabled it and VIOLA! No Mo Ads!

So I would suggest that everyone use the one that comes with a variety of security programs. I have three on my systems, the one that comes WITH the computer, Symantic, and System Mechanics. Not Advertising for them, but use them and watch ads disappear.

As for the current controversy, it's nice to see we have some trolls over here. Obvisiously sent here to make disparaging remarks.

Interesting would you not agree?

I am still having my doubts that Arianna is aware of what is going on, or that now that she is in the money she could care less.

The place has become highly self sufficient and she isn't going to risk having to lose a dime of that money.

Too bad, but she needs to get rid of the trollz and to get rid of Yakka. He's a self obessed asshole of the first degree.

I have no problem with back and forth debate with Neo Cons and other mentally disturbed people, but most of the troll post are anything but back and forth, they are mostly nasty, rude, obscene and crazy.

No point in those types of trollz.

BUT Yakko and others seem to think they are more important than actual discourse, which really shows Arianna's true colors. Instead of a respected blog she has one that is beginning to resemble Jerry Springer.

Trashy place now.

I can only hope people stay away until she wakes the hell up and cleans house. No matter what it is still HER NAME on the top of the page.

Pannyxeos said...

Man you sound like a four year old. You only have yourself to blame for this. And I find it amusing that somehow we are supposed to take you at your word that this is what transpired. Your "proof" if you can call it that at all is easily manipulated. Get over yourself.

Anonymous said...

I too tried to post multiple times in your favor but nothing ever showed up. Huffpo is dead to me now. They have no credibility at all. I will post such on my own blog. Just goes to show yet again that power corrupts.

Anonymous said...

Like I said, trollz are everywhere and YET just like Neo Cons morons, they claim any evidence they don't approve of is somehow suspect.

Must be Yakko the Wakko

Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Rost,

I was able to get in a post or two to your blog at (the one about the Rendon Group as I posted the Rolling Stone article link and the additional links about Bamford as well). has been banning me for making posts about Mearsheimer and Walt (and similar) like the following one:

Why aren't we discussing this Mearsheimer/Walt segment on the pro-Israel lobby which aired on C-SPAN's 'Washington Journal' this morning?:

Anonymous said...

my suspicions about the fairness and direction of huffpo were aroused by david mamet(and of course clooney). most of his posts were hand drawn comix. why would one of the best writers not write and just post comix? i haven't read a post of his in months? why did he leave? was he tring to tell us something?

Anonymous said...

The following includes the comments page at which I posted what was mentioned above:

Here is a tiny URL for the above one:

Anonymous said...

I made a few comments in support of you, Dr. Rost, in Arriana's "Explanation" blog over at Huff, and they both appeared ... it was interesting to see that they had changed position the following day, but that's unimportant here.

I was hopeful that we could make enough noise to get you reinstated over there, I've enjoyed reading your entries, and I'll miss them (probably drop Huff as my favorite blog site to boot).

Unfortunately, I'm thinking that your firing will likely be permanent, now that you've called Arriana a liar.

It might be worthwhile to note the way politicians keep from burning bridges in these types of matters. They constantly refer to each other as "my good friend" and instead of calling each other liars, they say things like 'mistaken' or 'misinformed'. I think if you had tried to maintain that sort of polite (political) dialog, this would probably have all blown over and we all would have been better off (we all meaning yourself, huff, and readers like me).

Good luck in the future, my good friend.

PS, I'm going to try to link to the blog with my comments just to see whether they've survived the great "book burning". I'll let you know if they've disappeared.

Anonymous said...

Well I found the blog and checked to see how my comments had fared ... one was concerning the ease with which someone in yaco's position could barrage the voting machine using different IP adresses.

The second was concerning the ease with which he could easily circumvent the entire voting mechanism, and just enter the vote count of his own choosing in a "diebold" like fashion.

The first survived, but the second has disappeared.

When you control the voting machines, you control the results.

Sad day.

Anonymous said... just banned me again within minutes for posting the following to as there is incredible censorship going on there:

The following was posted in the comments section of the various blog entries by Peter Rost via

Dear Mr. Rost,

I was able to get in a post or two to your blog at (the one about the Rendon Group as I posted the Rolling Stone article link and the additional links about Bamford as well). has been banning me for making posts about Mearsheimer and Walt (and similar) like the following one:

Why aren't we discussing this Mearsheimer/Walt segment on the pro-Israel lobby which aired on C-SPAN's 'Washington Journal' this morning?:


The following includes the comments page at which I posted what was mentioned above:

Here is a tiny URL for the above one:

By: HPcensoringtruthhere on June 24, 2006 at 03:01pm

Anonymous said...

Just noticed that even removed the above post from after I was banned for making it just minutes ago.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

They are censoring anything on Israel because, the Zionists know the jig is up thats obvious.

Israel and the Zionists can't hide or play the blame game now that they've ruined our country, via neocon intervention.

Those losers are all the same now, just like the trolls such as returnofdrevil2, Al Rogers, Nan Ellen of the Daily "KOS" propaganda press.


Very much agree with the above.. My HPCensoringBigTime Username was just banned at for posting on pages 1 and 2 of the comments at about the Zionist war for Israel agenda and the Mearsheimer/Walt paper on the pro-Israel lobby segment which aired on C-SPAN's 'Washington Journal' program this past Friday..

Abraham Foxman (of the ADL) was hammered hard by the caller (a lady with the Brit accent calling from London) on C-SPAN's 'Washington Journal' this morning as she mentioned the USS Liberty attack/cover-up ( and Paul Findley's 'There Dare to Speak Out' book and Jim Bamford's 'A Pretext for War' book as well (both the Mearsheimer/Walt and Abraham Foxman segments can be viewed online via the links at the following URL):,WJE&ArchiveDays=30

Here is the tiny URL for the above one:

Additional at following URLs about how MSNBC's Keith Olbermann dissed the Mearsheimer/Walt paper:

MSNBC's Olbermann Disses Mearsheimer and Walt Critique:

Anonymous said...

HUFFPOST INSURRECTION! Well, isn't this interesting! I'm just in the middle of reading the comments here, but I have to tell you that I've been banned from posting at HuffPo for over two months and it happened right after I, also, whacked around a couple of wing-nuts!
I definitely think that they have a wing-nut mole (or several) working for them and that, if Arianna doesn't clean up, it will lead to a major fall out.

Anonymous said...

I got banned again minutes after posting the following at via and other blog entries there (incredible censorship still going on as mentioned prior):

JINSA/PNAC Neocon Richard Perle: Why Did Bush Blink on Iran?:

Anonymous said...

Hey RosetheJet-

If you think I've agreed with every blogger who posts on Huff, you haven't read the stuff I wrote on the boards for Russell Shaw, Mike McCurry, Michael Smerconish, Carol Liebau, John Fund etc.

My point in defending HuffPo in that argument was that as Mr. Rost broke their rules. If he breaks their rules and had been informed as such they have the right to let him go. It's their blog, not his own. If you had your own blog that would be your right as well.

I generally liked Dr. Rost's posts except the one about the bird, he did the wrong thing. He should have taken it to a wildlife center, I have several within a ten mile radius here in Cleveland Ohio. I'd find it oddly self-serving that he didn't.

And now I finally know why I was accused of being Yacomink. Thanks for giving me my fifteen unearned minutes ;)


Anonymous said...

I used to have a huge amount of respect for Arianna. I thought the world of her up until she started her Blog site.. The Huffington Post. She's no better than any mainstream media source. I was shocked because I was a fan for so long but then just lost complete respect for her. She is completely two-faced. I've seen it over and over again. She claims to be progressive and anti-establishment and she does seem to be at times but then allows the but then allows the worst of the worst individuals to help run her site. She absolutely hates celebrities with a passion which can be seen daily on her "Entertainment" page. She claims to be fearless yet she can't muster up the courage to take a stand for something and can't control her staff. She is an angry woman who holds long grudges. I used to the Huffington Post was going to do great things. My God was I wrong. It is hate central. It is lies central. It is just pathetic. What she did to Peter Rost is a perfect example of her and her website. Do yourself a favor and find alternative news without all the lies and hate intertwined within it. Peter Rost is a hero and she treated him like yesterdays garbage. Absolutely shameful what's going on at the Huffington Post.

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't be surprised if Huffpo has a list of favored users. I created a fake persona that constantly praises Arianna, and then at the same time I troll Obots using some pretty salty and snarky language and not once have I been banned. It's pretty clear that they have decided to take a Soviet approach to their "journalism". Pretty nasty business if you ask me.