Following a despicable attempt to attack RdS and what we, I am compelled to go public with this story. I do apologize with readers for bringing in a topic which has nothing to do with the 'businesss as usual' of our website. I confide in the readers' comprehension and support.
I was hoping that this day would have never come, however, sometimes, when you are attacked, you have to defend yourself.
To defend your work. To defend what you believe in. To stand for what you have been doing so far receiving the appreciation of the people around you: fans, clubs and institutions.
RdS is a website with no financial income.
It is based on the work of his voluntaries.
Every article we write, it’s free of charge.
All the times we spent our time on an article.
All the nights we spent our nights writing.
All the days we have spent our day looking for informations, networking, keeping contacts etc.
All those times, were done without any financial return.
Mr. Andres Vaher gets paid.
He gets his salary from what he writes. Every word costs something to his publisher.
Mr. Andres Vaher wins prizes for writing.
On the 15th of August 2013 Mr. Vaher published this article when he was still working for Õhtuleht: http://www.ohtuleht.ee/537190/mis-toimub-kihlveomangude-raudse-eesriide-taga
The article earned him a prize from his colleagues.
A very nice article, I cannot object anything at it. A nice description at start on how the road of match fixing starts in Asia and arrives to Europe etc. very good even though nothing we did not know before, it’s a rather usual pattern of the matchfixing.
Then we come to brothers Siska. And their ties with Sander Karu.
For those following ‘RdS’ on ‘Tere Italia’, it will not be hard to remember the following articles published by myself when RdS was still a section there:
(I have republished them in our new website: http://www.rumodispo.com/magazine/ ).
Well, I hope you had time to read everything and draw your conclusions on how Mr. Vaher managed to get to the prize: by plagiarism.
If you didn’t have time, then I will explain.
Thanks to a story read in Soccernet forum (which was quoted as such) I managed to get confirmation about Karu having been seen at a game with the Siskas. I even contacted the same person who told the story to have more details (article 1).
Following that story, Soccernet contacted Karu to ask whether this ‘forum stories’ were true (Soccernet is fully quoted as a source).
His words literally were: ‘Well, let’s say so: in the Soccernet forum anyone can write whatever he wants, as anonymous, without any kind of evidence’.
Karu put the credibility of his words at stake as in that moment he kept pleading innocent.
The social networks (Facebook, Twitter etc.) are a wonderful tool nowadays.
However, can be a terrible boomerang.
After a night spent searching, I managed to find the unmistakable proof that Karu and Siska not only did know each other, but they even travelled to a football game together in Spain (article 2).
Not happy, I personally contacted the hotel in Barcelona (the name was there thanks to the status update) to ask confirmation and after insistence, I got what I was looking for: they were there on the 12th of March 2013, just few months before the betting bubble exploded. I still have that e-mail.
As I said in my article, it did not prove that Siska was involved in the scandal, but it did prove that Karu was a liar. Would you believe a liar pleading innocence? The point of my article was reached.
Now we come to Mr.Vaher’s article.
After the short preamble, he obviously got to the core of the news: the ties between Karu and Siska.
Yes, we’ve got very good words from the beach soccer coach, Haavistu, confirming what we knew: Siska has been renown for betting. It is an additional info to what everyone knows in the football environment.
The piece of information about them going to Kazan with Karu, I must admit is a very good one.
One has to recognize the good work where it is. However, the trip to Barcelona was never mentioned notwithstanding it was the starting point of his research:
Karu ja Siskade tihedat läbikäimist kinnitavad mitmed fotod Facebookis ja pealtnägijate kirjeldused mullusest kurikuulsast mängust Viljandis, kus FC Viljandi Nõmme Kaljule 1:9 kaotas ja Siskad koos võõrustajate poolel vaheajal välja vahetatud Karuga teisel poolajal skoori kasvamisele platsiserval närviliselt kaasa elasid.
I will scrap the part about witnesses talking about the famous game, the Soccernet forum is public, everyone can read that.
However, this is important: Karu ja Siskade tihedat läbikäimist kinnitavad mitmed fotod Facebookis – the tight relationship between Karu and the Siskas is confirmed by several pictures on Facebook.
Where might have he found those pictures on Facebook? Mmm…maybe here?
‘Angelo!’ you will exclaim ‘what are you trying to tell us? That a respectable journalist from Õhtuleht, now at Delfi has stolen your material and not even quoted the source???’
No, I am not telling you. This is what actually happened.
I was ingenuous, I admit. Because I did not claim the due when needed. However, one commits a mistake only once.
When there was a chance to talk about this (in the ‘Perhson affair’, soon you will read what is about) he admitted: ‘your story and picture(s) also helped in some way and that's why mentioning it would've been right’
He acknowledged his mistake, but he never thought back then that mentioning my discovery was due.
He added some interesting explanation to his lack of credit: ‘Three of the biggest Estonian papers (Õhtuleht, Postimees and Päevaleht? – A.P.) have agreed in principle: we are not using pictures from FB.’
Yes, you are not using, but it is ok to ‘take inspiration’, quoting them without quoting who has actually discovered them after some efforts, am I right Mr. Vaher?
We come to recent history.
On the 7th of March, from 101% sure source, I published this article about Kruglov moving to Azerbaijan: http://www.rumodispo.com/transfersnews/kruglov-transfer my source (which for obvious reasons I will keep undisclosed) even confirmed me that the two FA’s (EJL and AFFA) had exchanged transfer and the player was at all effects belonging to FC Ravan.
The news soon bounced on other media: Soccernet.ee, quoting ‘Rumori di Spogliatoio’; Postimees.ee quoting ‘Rumori di Spogliatoio’. Upon checking Delfi.ee, I could not believe my eyes, therefore check yourself: http://sport.delfi.ee/news/jalgpall/eesti/dmitri-kruglov-lahkub-levadiast-aserbaidzaani.d?id=68193231
The article was published after mine. However, it failed to contain a single quote of where from that information was taken.
Considering in the past Mr.Vaher had chance to come to me in occasion of the ‘Pehrsson affaire’ (when the present-day Estonian NT coach was spotted at the stadium), I reminded about that episode.
Mr. Vaher was righteously looking for acknowledgment of his ‘scoop’ as he was the first one to talk about Pehrsson as future coach. Later on, and for a series of unlucky circumstances that are part of the journalistic job when everyone is after a piece of news, Mr. Vaher did not manage to get hold of a picture of the future national team coach first, having Õhtuleht been faster.
My mistake was in having quoted the latter only instead of referring to Mr. Vaher as well.
After checking everything, I acknowledged my mistake and I promptly amended the info: the news belonged first to Mr. Vaher.
In Italy we have a say: ‘a Cesare, quello che e’ di Cesare’ – give to Cesar what belongs to him’.
I did give him what belonged to him as I have always done.
So now it was my turn to be Cesar.
However, quite surprisingly, Mr. Vaher denied.
I will spare you the myriads of excuses forwarded to me, as if I were enough imbecile to take them for true. Enough to label them as offence to my intelligence. Ma olen võõrlane, mitte loll.
I will spare you the bible-length conversation I had to have with him, wasting my best creative energies.
I will spare you all this because I think I have taken enough of your time.
He obviously claims he was after this piece of news already. However, I would feel ridiculous if I would publish something saying: ‘hey, I knew it already, but someone was quicker’ wouldn’t I?
Mr. Vaher has chosen to go the hard way. And against an independent, free-of-charge and profit-less media. He’s been slandering RdS name and use his network to create an hostile environment around what we do and my person in particular.
Unfortunately, I was taught to have respect for who I am, what I do and the people who support me.
He thinks I do this because I have a ‘high self-consideration’ of myself.
No, Mr. Vaher, you’re wrong.
My consideration is where it has to be for a person who worked voluntarily for one year to help the Estonian football get known beyond Estonia but also within Estonia, with a different approach of doing things. My work and the work of those who started to collaborate with me actively.
The series of acknowledgments and feedbacks that I have received, are tons more worth than a single prize you reached with cheating. They did not pay my bill, but pushed me forward until here.
Said that, I wish you to be successful for the rest of your career, Mr. Vaher, at least as much as I was in one year.