The Huffington Post has been hiring like crazy since AOL bought it -- Vanity Fair's Michael Hogan is the newest addition -- but a legal antagonist has been doing some recruiting of his own. Jonathan Tasini, the journalist and labor organizer who filed a $105 million class action suit against Huffpo and its founders in April, has added four new plaintiffs to his cause.
The joiners are filmmaker Molly Secours, PR/marketing expert Richard Laermer, journalist Billy Altman and writer Tara Dublin. All four were volunteer bloggers for Huffpo who stopped contributing to the site in January or February. The acquisition by AOL was announced Feb. 7. "Arianna Huffington is a little like Tom Sawyer -- except at least Sawyer didn't sell the fence after his friends finished painting it for him," says Altman in a statement accompanying the amended complaint, filed Friday.
Having additional plaintiffs could help Tasini in his bid for class certification -- the first hurdle he'll have to clear in order to proceed with the suit. After that will come the test of his somewhat novel legal theory that Huffington's treatment of her bloggers constitutes unjust enrichment.
Hogan, by the way, was Vanity Fair's executive digital editor, in charge of its website. At AOL, he'll be executive features editor and editor in chief of Moviefone and AOL TV.
- Jonathan Tasini
- unjust enrichment