Veteran football/boxing scribe Ron Borges has been serving a two-month suspension from the Boston Globe resulting from his appropriation of another journalist’s work. Said edict, however, has not stopped Borges from working for others, reports Boston Sports Media’s David Scott. Several Borges-bylined pieces ran on Oscar De La Hoya’s website last week, causing Scott to declare, “for Borges to even consider taking on assignments from an athlete he is supposed to be covering either tells us that he truly believes he has done nothing wrong in his cut and paste of Mike Sando or that he believes the Globe is too wimpy and powerless (with the union especially) to dare mess with the big, bad Bully Borges.”
It is not clear is whether Borges was paid by De La Hoya™s promotional firm or if he was working on their behalf in a gratis manner. But his byline on its own and the original copy indicates some type of business relationship. Any way you look at it, because of the site where Borges work appeared, he was, in essence, promoting the fight. The same way that guys like Don King, Bob Arum and yes, De La Hoya do. But none of them are supposed journalists the way Borges is. They™re simply called hucksters and con-men for their efforts. Borges is called a “journalist.” But perhaps not for long, as it now appears Borges arrogance knows no limits.
If he was being paid for his De La Hoya work, then Borges should be told, in no uncertain terms to take his two-month suspension and keep right on walking out onto Morrissey Boulevard and not ever return. And his big buddy Union reps – who leapt to his defense in early March – can whistle Dixie on that one.
As one industry insider told us, œThis would be like Borges writing for and being paid by Patriots.com, but still covering the team for the Globe.
Only this is a worse ethical breach. De La Hoya is a one-man corporation. He™s not only a boxer, but a rising promoter, who Borges will clearly need to be dealing with for the foreseeable future if he continues to cover boxing.
In other words, where™s the objectivity? If Borges was paid by GoldenBoy promotions (and the credential and his seating at the event, would suggest he was), how will he ever be able to cover the boxer with any semblance of objectivity again? And even if he is able to separate his working relationship from his journalistic coverage, is this really the type of issue that the Boston Globe should be getting involved in? Especially considering the mistrust and skepticism that now exists for Borges and his work in the wake of his suspension and the œplagiarism that Globe editor Martin Baron said the paper œdoes not tolerate.
At the very least, it brings Borges decision-making back into question even before his suspension officially ends with his first Globe piece in 60-plus days.