An open letter to

Dear Delfi,

First of all, allow me to offer my congratulations on being one of the leading news portals in Latvia. I don’t visit very often but, clearly, a lot of people do.

I know this because, on Wednesday, a lot of people started visiting my site from yours. Intrigued as to the reason behind the sudden jump in my readership, I followed the link that was bringing everyone here. When I saw the headline ‘Irishwoman Disappointed with Hipster Centre’, my surprise was twofold. First of all, I was amazed that an Irishwoman walking down a street in Riga was considered ‘Entertainment News’, and secondly, as you never asked for my permission to use the post, I was rather confounded to see it (poorly) translated on your website.

Now I understand that it was a slow day for entertainment ‘news’. The other main stories were as follows:

  • Woman goes out in public after divorce (8 comments)
  • Man who was an alcoholic 25 years ago, is (shock horror) still an alcoholic (25 comments)
  • Leonardo DiCaprio and half-naked love frolic on the beach (6 comments) – they were in the sea. What did you expect her to be wearing? A leopard-print jumpsuit and stilettos?
  • Two women dazzle at motor show (8 comments)
Dazzling 'ladies'

Dazzling ‘ladies’

And then there was me – 95 comments.

Here’s the thing – I like my Latvian blog readers. Even if they don’t agree with everything I say, they manage to express their opinions in a reasonable manner. While it’s true that a few people who found me from your article are smart people who can understand humour, the majority appear to be troglodytes with wifi. Their arguments against my blog are mainly ‘go home to YOUR Ireland’ and ‘Latvian women are more beautiful than Irish women so nothing she says matters anyway’. YAWN.

Of course, I can understand why they think everything on my blog is negative. They’re basing their opinions on your incredibly selective ‘article’ which focused only on the negative. While you may have thought you were doing me a favour by stealing my work, your underhand approach to boosting your own stats has failed to impress. I don’t need readers like that. I don’t need any help with my blog hits – it’s trundling along nicely towards 200,000 hits all by itself, thank you very much.

Your sneakiness has eroded what was left of my sweet and trusting nature. You’ll have noticed that there is a new addition to the footer section of my blog, or if you haven’t, here it is:

  • © Linda O’Grady and Expat Eye on Latvia, 2013-2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Linda O’Grady and Expat Eye on Latvia with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

And yes, in case you’re wondering, this includes shoddy, selective translations.

I look forward to reading more of your entertainment ‘news’ in the future. Perhaps ‘my’ article could start a trend – ‘Swede trips over pothole’ or ‘English man receives surly service in restaurant’ could be two future articles.

Yours faithfully,

Linda O’Greidija (Expat Eye on Latvia)



About BerLinda

Adjusting to life in Germany, after living in Latvia for four years. Should be easy, right?
This entry was posted in Expat, Humor, Humour, Latvia, Rudeness and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

121 Responses to An open letter to

  1. Pingback: Jānis and Gunta, sittin’ in a tree… | Expat Eye on Latvia

  2. starovoitovs says:

    Negative ad is also an ad, and BTW I first heard of your blog from this article and now i enjoy it much. But it doesn’t make scribblers from delfi look better.

    • Expat Eye says:

      No, it doesn’t 😉 I think they knew that I would say no after all the negativity that happened after the Kas Jauns article so they just went ahead and took it without asking, which pissed me off 😉
      But I’m glad some nice people found the blog as a result! Hope you continue to enjoy it for the next few months! 🙂 Linda.

  3. 1WriteWay says:

    “Sweet and trusting nature”? How did I miss that 😉 There’s a bit of a controversy here with a website called Bloglovin that pulls in RSS feeds of blogs. People can follow your blog from the website. Mine is on there although I’ve never registered with the website. Some bloggers think it is an infringement of copyright; the website owners claim that since the RSS feeds are public, they have the right to run them. Your case is particularly worse since it sounds like they mangled your post in their translation of it. But perhaps now they will know not to mess with you again 😉

    • Expat Eye says:

      Hopefully 😉 They don’t seem like the brightest bunch though… I spotted that I was getting hits from bloglovin’ ages ago, even though I hadn’t registered at the time. People assured me that I must have done – seems I was right!

  4. Marika says:

    Hi 🙂
    I came accords your blog thanks to one of those Delfi or was it KasJauns articles, they seem to appear to my news feed… anyway…my point is I would have never known you existed if it wasn’t for them 🙂 I like your blog.
    Who cares about the negative comments they are written by people who are bitter and believe their opinions matter, just don’t give them your time or attention.
    I am Latvian, and haven’t lived in Latvia for 5 years, I’ve been back once since I moved away and boy, I suffered some serious culture shock when I visited for a week a year ago. I don’t think that Latvians who believe that “Latvians are the best at everything” and live there see how bad things are in comparison to other places.

    • Expat Eye says:

      Hi Marika! I’m glad you found the blog! Those articles did bring some good people my way so it’s not all bad 😉 Where are you living now?

  5. SilvyRiga says:

    Well… they’re free to think and write their opinions (even though I am totally sure that “think” “write” and “opinions” are not appropriate words for such people!)
    And, most likely, articles are written by young, recently graduated and underpaid journalists who have to make up some junk journalism to compensate the lack of news and to make their “readers” feel better people. They have their target set and I am sure that who wrote the article actually doesn’t think so.

    But that is the price to pay for being a celebrity in Latvia! 🙂

    P.S. We will start filming from tomorrow on. And I really hope we can catch up for a beer soon!

  6. Katrina says:

    This made me LOL. 🙂 Just found your blog and am intrigued!

  7. wasd says:

    While reading your post, I had one word stuck in my head – “Burn” I stumble uppon their news from that was the place where I spoted article about you as well, and recognised as soon as I saw it. Why is one of most popular portals in latvian virtual space with its poor quality and bad attitude is beyond my comprehension.

    Comments containing “go home (not latvian of your choise)” or “latvians do (put any stuff you like here) than (not latvians of your choise)” are so ignorant and meaningless. Eather they have no time to learn what is this blog about but they still want to leave their stink mark or they just don’t care.

    Anyway really loved your brilliant answer and hopefully if there are any grey mass left in office they will avoid to mess with you in future.

    • Expat Eye says:

      I hope so too. I have my doubts about the grey matter though 😉 I guess there isn’t enough competition with these online portals so people have to read low-grade material or nothing. Or they could all start reading my blog 😉

  8. CrazyCatLady says:

    Have you taken legal action against the bastards?

  9. At least you are even more famous now. I would be happy if Delfi had ever come across any of my posts about Latvia.

  10. Gunta says:

    Linda, would you like to have a beer at one of the irish pubs with me? I just got back to Riga after two years in the US of A and my husbands leave was cancelled last moment, so I have nothing but time and beer cravings! Let me know if you are interested 🙂

    • Expat Eye says:

      Sounds good! How about next weekend? How does it feel to be back??

      • Gunta says:

        Pretty good, but also weird. I went to Galleria and survived the door domino, so I have that going for me. I am enterteining my mother next weekend :-), so during the week would be better if you don’t mind drinking during the week 🙂 I also have some Reeses peanut butter cups to bribe you!

      • Expat Eye says:

        I’m sure I’ll find a good home for them 😉 How about Wednesday then? Drop me a line at

  11. Pingback: An open letter to | Tinseltown Times

  12. “Troglodytes with wifi”- just too good!! I laughed out loud!! But sorry you had to deal with these sneaky miscreants! Glad you were able to have a sense of humor about it all though!

  13. Cindi says:

    I agree with an earlier commenter — there do seem to be an awful lot of haters in Latvia. (Their loss.)

    But truly, I’m so impressed with your competition on Wednesday’s entertainment “news” day. A woman goes out in public after a divorce? Shocking, I tell you. Shocking. With that nugget, why would anyone care about a westerner’s view of a hipster street?

    Now I’m off to find an image of Leo. His half-naked love doesn’t need to be included in the image. 😉

  14. A.S. says:

    Just relax and enjoy free publicity ))) Red your entire blog. I like it. Thanks. And I guess there was low probability to find it if it did not appear on delfi. The fact that delfi is a yellowish media in ultraperifery is another matter. But then … contentwise most alternatives are even worse in ultraperifery or not.

  15. mmarinaa says:

    Do copyrights on the Internet mean anything? Like are there actual punishments for it?

    • Expat Eye says:

      I need to properly look into it. Plagiarism isn’t a crime – just a breach of ethics and something journalists should not do. Copyright infringement is a crime.

  16. linnetmoss says:

    The picture of the motor show says it all! Love those sexy tool belts 😉

  17. For the love of corn! Try your best to let this roll off you like water off a duck’s back and have a wonderful Easter.

  18. Never mind 🙂 I hear due to your new popularity ABC want to make a mini series, Michael Fassbender is being looked at to play every Janis, Brad is down for the leading male part, they’re just trying to find someone short enough for the leading lady – so chances are you’ll get to play yourself 😉

  19. Pecora Nera says:

    There seem to be an awful lot of haters in Latvia 😦 Happy Easter to you.

    • Expat Eye says:

      Thanks, same to you!
      Yeah, I think this particular section of society have too much time on their hands and too little going on between their ears 😉 They need a common ‘enemy’ and I’m an easier target than Russia 😉

    • ansis says:

      We are not haters. We just can`t understand why is she complaining about things that are not connected with she. It`s like crying about fact that your neighbor has run out of toilet paper! Mind your own business!

  20. Glad you are voicing your opinion on what you believe in!!! You go girl!!

  21. Sorry to hear you had to deal with this crap. What stands out most to me is, over 200,000 readers? Damn sista! While I like the copyright piece, that’s outstanding! I wouldn’t give the trolls another thought

    • Expat Eye says:

      Yeah, it’s not so bad when they comment on here (though no particularly pleasant) but some of them find my personal FB page and proceed to insult me on that too. It’s just a matter of blocking them of course but it feels like more of an invasion there!

      • I’m sorry to hear you have all this crap to deal with. As for FB, I just got off of it. But when I was on, the only ones who could see my stuff were friend’s or friends of friends. It’s too invasive for my taste. Just keep in mind, when people criticize, it usually means you’re doing something right.

      • Expat Eye says:

        Yeah, that’s exactly how I look at it 😉 It goes back to the ‘In Latvia, you can’t win’ post. If I only talked about how wonderful everything is, I would be a silly, blinkered Westerner. I’m not saying anything that people don’t already know, they just don’t like that a foreigner is saying it 😉

  22. Gerbil With Jetpack says:

    Yes, there is a special term “Delfu komentētājs” in Latvia. It has served as a subject for numerous master and PhD thesis in fields of sociology, antropology and psychiatry. It’s not on Wikipedia yet but it will be, I promise :). Sokratis is pissed too:

  23. What happened to the Swede? I feel like I need to know.

  24. Oh Linda, can’t they find someone else to pick on? LOL You are the most popular expat blog on the planet and haters gonna hate! Keep shining on! 🙂

    • Expat Eye says:

      Ha ha! Thanks! 🙂 Hopefully they’ll find someone else after this – I guess I’m an easy target. Or so they think. They’ll find out otherwise if they attempt something like this again… 😉

  25. Emmi says:

    Out of all the very controversial, witty and rage-inspiring posts that you have they chose this rather average and slightly ironic story on lack of hipsters and lemon cake? seriously?

    • Expat Eye says:

      I know, right? I think they were trying to recreate the scandal that came out of the ‘Moving to Riga’ post that Kas Jauns published. Only problem is that this post isn’t particularly negative and nobody really gave a shit! While after the KJ thing, I felt like I was being hunted, this is more like a mosquito I want to swat 😉

  26. Mārčuks says:

    “The most notorious woman in the country” – as you said. 😀
    Nevermind them. Your blog is great. And I believe that we need some opinion from people from another countries/cultures too. But on the other hand, we don’t know, what did the person learned first – using the internet or undrestanding humour.

  27. lizard100 says:

    Think of the material! Just imagine what you could do at a motor show, or if you run into Leo Dicaprio! What a bleed in’ cheek!

  28. bmagpub says:

    As has been said, Haters gonna hate! Tell me, does sarcasm and irony translate well into Latvian? Are they the best humorists in the world? (Dave Allen, Jimeoin) Writers? (Hmm, where was Oscar Wilde from? Roddy Doyle, James Joyce, G. Bernard Shaw, to name a few). Could/would you enlighten me to similar world known Latvians? Shall I go out and take a picture of a tree for you? ;-). Maybe make and post you a pavlova (or rhubarb and white chocolate cake)? And what are those “dazzling women” wearing?

    Hope you have a wonderful Easter.

    • Expat Eye says:

      I have no idea what those women are wearing. I just know that it hurt my eyes 😉 Seemingly they’re singers, not ‘glamour’ models though! And no, I don’t think sarcasm and irony translate into Latvian – or at least when they’re deliberately missing the point, trying to boost their own ratings. ‘Hmm, we’re a bit low on visitors this month.’ ‘I know – why don’t we pick on that Irish girl, that’s bound to get a few hits…’ 😉

  29. Do you know what was my reaction, when I saw an article of Delfi? `Oh, I know the Irish girl Linda!!`. It was nice, as I have no clue of all other celebrities they talk about :)))

    • Expat Eye says:

      Ha ha! Well, I’m certainly not a celebrity 🙂 But I had no clue who the other people were either – except for the lovely Leo of course 😉 Shame on him for being half-naked on a beach 😉

  30. Mārtiņš says:

    I read that delfi article.
    Delfi is for haters. The most negative commentator in Latvia is always found on their site, whatever the article is about.
    Still one thing makes me sad – it has become/or was for a long time already an unreliable source. The translation was indeed done in selective, inaccurate manner.
    From what I read in your blog I understood that you liked the place, Miera street and this was one of the most positive posts.
    Yellow journalism; know you know where to find it. Sadly they are number 1 news portal and people tend to believe everything what’s written there, they quote scientists, give health recommendations… never had I thought how close to the original it all was.

    • Expat Eye says:

      Yeah, it’s worth bearing in mind. Take everything with a pinch of salt! And yes, I did like Miera – did I think it was the coolest place on earth? No, but it’s a nice street with some nice places to eat and drink and I think that came across in my blog post.

  31. Anna says:

    Good note on copyright.
    In general, I would say almost all publicity is good publicity – I think you can use the fact of someone making your blog ‘news’ to raise your profile with potential clients (hey, you’re becoming a celeb!) and make it rain, baby! At the end of the day, you win anyway 🙂
    Happy Easter!

  32. Martin says:

    Where is link to delfi?

    • Expat Eye says:

      I didn’t really want to boost their stats any more than I already have 😉
      But just for you –

      • Bob Lewis says:

        Well, I followed that link to the ‘Delfi’ article and the first thing that popped up was a sign saying, ‘This article cannot be translated’! If the computer can’t understand it what hope have we poor mortals got!?
        One thing that did cross my mind is that all those responses you got might be part of a ‘softening up’ process. I’m not at all sure who owns the site in question, but I think that it might well be someone based a bit further east than us! That being the case it could be the start of a propaganda war against Ireland. Trying to reduce morale before a series of ‘infiltration’ attempts! The men who are busy along the Ukranian border are often referred to as ‘The little green men.’ , so if they came to Ireland no-one would notice until it was too late!
        You have been warned!

      • Expat Eye says:

        Ha ha, nice theory! You could copy/paste it into Google translate but I wouldn’t really waste your time 😉

  33. nancytex2013 says:

    Oh my. Haters gonna hate.

  34. Sorry to hear about the negative press (as well as the copyright neglect on their part). It sounds like despite the trolls, you may still have gained some new readers. I hope that’s the case and that it helps you make the most of this situation.

    On a side note, I think you are handling this very well. I would be a lot more upset were I in your shoes.

    • Expat Eye says:

      Well, I’m not very happy about it but there’s not much I can do about it now – apart from this 😉 And yes, the people who hated the blog will just sod off back to delfi – the ones who liked it will stick around so that’s nice 🙂

  35. But I thought Latvians were the best language translators in the world… 😉

  36. June says:

    You go, girl! Any response?!

  37. Daina says:

    What a crummy thing to do! Sorry you’ve had to put up with this!!

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