Note from Aussie blogger Tim Blair:
Re the first use of "fisking" as a verb, I believe I may possibly have some claim.
He's right. Blair used the term in this Dec 19, 2001 post
, the first use of "fisk" as a verb to my knowledge. Here's the quote:
He deserves a righteous kicking, and I think Natalie might be first in line with the Fisking boots.
Note that Blair's post predates Glenn Reynolds' first use
of the term by five days. Between Blair's Dec. 19 post and Reynolds' Dec. 24 post, the term began to migrate in meaning from physical pommelling to oratorical pommelling. The source of the term is British journalist Robert Fisk. Fisk was beaten by a gang of Afghani thugs and then wrote sympathetically about his attackers. The blogoshere proceded to rip apart Fisk's work.
For more complete background, see my history of the term
, which I have updated to include Blair's contribution.
By way of background, Blair is my favorite Australian blogger. His exceptional coverage of the 2003 Bali terror was second to none. He blogs here