US Expats CR Petition to Stop Businesses Ads at Costa Rica Star

It has always been the policy of Tico Times® Directory to be neutral, and only on rare occasions will we write something political and/or controversial, like what we did on the release of a pedophile, the poaching of Costa Rica sea turtle eggs, and real estate scams.

However, this morning we received (not one, but many) of the same cookie-cutter emails:

Dear Tico Times Directory,

I just signed Daniel Woodall's petition "Disassociate, cease financial support and endorsement of the Costa Rica Star.: We ask that you terminate professional and financial relationships, and cease all payments for advertising to the Costa Rica Star and its publisher Enrico Cacciatore." on

 We ask that you terminate professional and financial relationships, and cease all payments for advertising to the Costa Rica Star and its publisher Enrico Cacciatore.

Daniel Woodall San José, Costa Rica,

Editor Note: Mr. Woodall is a writer for US Expat Costa Rica – a Blog that provides information/news to US expats living in Costa Rica.

Right below was a link to petition that asked (more like threatened) us to sign. is a website that tries to promote social change through online petitions and it is currently under fire for their sp@m-like emails.

At the bottom of the petition the following reads with the links to their websites:

Businesses and individuals that continue to associate with the Costa Rica Star, do so at the risk of damage to their professional integrity and the value of their brands.

Croc’s Casino Resort in Costa Rica and Owner/CEO Dag Hascall in Jacó, Costa Rica

Palm Real Estate Costa Rica in Playas del Coco, Playa Hermosa, Playa Ocotal, Playa Panama, Matapalo and and Owner, Mari Brenes

Attorney Jose Alfredo Campos of Lex Counsel in San José, Costa Rica

Costa Rica Tico Times Directory and Manager Kip W. Ives

Corey Coates in This Week in Costa Rica hosted by on Overseas Radio

Then about an hour later, we started getting these sp@m-like emails from people who have signed the petition.

Okay, WTF is this!

First, lets backup on this and see why this Daniel Woodall of US Expats Costa Rica had the audacity to target Stars advertisers.

On Jan 12, 2014 one of the Star's contributors, Marcel Evans wrote an article, New Law in Costa Rica for Perpetual Tourist, the article had a lot of disturbing information about expats living in Costa Rica.

Immediately, Costa Rican expats started flipping out, thinking their residency in Costa Rica was being jeopardize.

Now here is what we found very interesting,  other “knowledgeable” readers quickly pointed out that the article was in fact, a word-for-word/cut & paste copy of an article that appeared on another news website, AM Costa Rica, on February 19th, 2010, as new immigration laws were debated that year.

One sharp reader commented, “VERY old news. Mario Zamora has not been director of La Migra for several years. Many of the things mentioned in this article never came to pass. A few were only partially implemented. It's a suckers cut-and-paste.”

After a day, the Star added a editor’s note above the article:

UPDATE: The purpose of publishing this article is to prove how misinformation online can cause problems, it’s always best to consult with a lawyer in matters of immigration and residency. The content in this article below is not accurate, and should create conversation on the topic. The Costa Rica Star recently published an article about getting your permanent residency in Costa Rica to avoid the costs and delays associated with perpetual tourism.

So why are we, and other businesses being targeted [in this petition] to terminate our relationship with the Star? In otherwords, what do we have to do with Stars business practices? With said, we looked back on some other articles that got readers all fired up:

Was there any petition filed against Elpeji or Inside Costa Rica advertisers because it fooled some of their readers?

Regardless of what you read nowadays, it is the choice of the reader to believe it or not.

Any seasonal reader of the Internet knows, when any doubt comes in to mind, then it becomes the responsibility of the reader to research the article. Obvious, many read the Star article and knew it was BS.  And whether or not, it was written for controversy, that’s the business decision of the Star.

In regards to ANY immigration laws in Costa Rica, any knowledgeable expat knows three rules, 1) Keep on top of the immigration laws from reliable sources,  2) Respect the laws of Costa Rica and 3) When in doubt, hired a attorney.

Our point is very adamant, Okay, maybe the Star made a bad business call on just one of the 100s of articles it has written and it’s not like others have done the same.

And okay, maybe they did it to promote and make money for others, including themselves. Like almost all media outlets, they have to make a few bucks to keep in business.

So, do we fault them for that?

Several years ago Tico Times Newspaper wrote an article about some children benefit function that was totally bogus and outcry was heard. They later apologized for it when they learned their writer never even went to interview the people of the benefit.  We can’t count how many other articles that have been written that have stirred controversy or were just blatantly wrong or done with malicious intentions.

The Star's article was done as to what the Star said in their update, and there was no malicious intentions. The Star has a good reputation of writing quality articles and we support them 100%.

With said, just because we elect to business with the Star, who are you Mr. Woodall to tell us, who we can, and can not do business with? 

How in the hell can you accuse us for unethical behavior, and demand us to terminate professional and financial relationships when ALL we did was a simple banner exchange?

In otherwords, Mr. Woodall, "People who live in glass houses … shouldn't throw stones."



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  1. Ms Maria says:

    Nothing but a bias jerk this Woodall. All newspapers at some time or another can not validate all facts in a story that some journalists wrote. And you blame the Stars advertiser? Kudos to Tico Times Directory for sticking up against this hateful person.

    • Daniel is hardly a hateful person Ms. Maria. I seriously doubt you have ever interacted with him. In any case, Tico Times is trying to obfuscate the fact that the Star lifted the aforementioned article directly from another publication's archive. Their purported reason for doing so was made up after they were caught. This is not the first time that the Star has done such a thing. They make a regular habit of stealing others' work and then claiming they are just "aggregating" news such as Huffington Post does. A very weak excuse for their plagiarism since bona fide publications such as HuffPost make sure their content is licensed or otherwise printed with permission.

      • admin says:

        To Casey,

        Obvioulsy you have no clue to what our post was about, and if anything very hycritical.

        Recently, Tico Times, the newspaper (who we are NOT assocated with, so right off the bat you are dead wrong) wrote a article about the APM terminals public meeting that was full of outright blatant misinformation. They were publicly challenged about the motives behind this false story.They ended up pulling the story, without so much as apology.

        But did anyone put out a petition to stop advertizement on the TT newspaper?

        If Daniel Woodall was so-claim advocator of ethical journalism, why did he not petition the Newspaper, about their total BS story?

        The fact remains David Woodall threatened us and some VERY REPUTABLE BUSINESSES by implying, and I quote from his petition, " … and hold Costa Rica Star, its publishers and ultimately its sponsors responsible for [the Stars] unethical behavior."

        Then HE TRIED extortion, that if we did not pull our ads from the Star, and I quote from his online petition, "do so at the risk of damage to their professional integrity and the value of their brands."

        And you say, the opinion liberal HuffPost is a bona fide publication? A media that has lost over 50% of their viewers because of bogus writing and has countless law suits filed against them because of that.

        Get a grip on reality, 99% of the article on (which Daniel writes for) comes from other sources, just as many of the Stars does and other do.

        We do not care about the personal dispute that Mr. Woodall has with the Star – what we do care is being named in something we have no control of and not responsible of …  and then being threatened with extortion just because David did not like somehing he read.

  2. Randy says:

    Those of us that are new to Costa Rica wouldn't know that this was a hoax right away. Beings very little information comes from the government on these things, we depend on competent sources to give us the info. This would not be the first time that we have been blind sided. Refer to the driver's license change, the update on addresses requirement and on and on. If they are going to report the news, it should be factual. Otherwise put the discalimer at the end of the article, instead of later when you have stirred everyone up.

  3. I read that and what a sham, what a way to 'get rid of your competition.. I am sorry.. If the newspaper publish erroneous information, the newspaper, it is your personal choice to subscribe or follow them.. 

    • It is not a case of publishing erroneous information, but a case of plagiarism, plain and simple. Their excuse for why they printed the article was made up because Adrian Vargas is simply unable to apologize for anything. Daniel is right to call out this plagiaristic publication and I'm really surprised to see a legit publication such as the Tico Times defending the Star.

      • admin says:

        What Plagiarism Mr Casey?  We will always defend the right (whether we agree or disagree) of free speech unless that right is abused, like being racist or hateful.

  4. LOL to Jerry … you must have been one of the people that believed the article. Its not about the article, its about putting blame on businesses that had nothing to do with the article.

  5. You don't seem to be able to identify good satire vs. shoddy news reporting. 

    • Taylor says:

      Yeah, don't like what you read, then don't read it. Dud!  Any intellegent expat could see the article was meant to be a hoax. Now tell me why this Daniel Woodall would put blame on the advertizers?

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