Michael Calderone has the latest scoop on MoDoGate. The Times emailed him to say that it was no biggie since MoDo eventually gave credit and Marshall didn’t care very much (t takes them two paragraphs to say this, for some reason). Calderone writes:
I think this incident sheds light on the use of content without attribution — even if from a friend — that seems to be acceptable at the Times. Of course a columnist will take ideas from those they speak with, but entire passages verbatim?
If I was e-mailed a 40-plus-word block of text for this blog, and I used it, I’d include some sort of attribution — whether “a reader writes in,” “media insider points out” or whatever the case may be.
But from The Times’ response, it seems the paper finds it acceptable for columnists to take entire paragraphs from friends (or sources?), over the phone or e-mail, and reproduce them verbatim in the paper under the columnist’s byline.
I think that nails it. Inserting 40 word block that a friend wrote is bad form in blogging, why is it okay for the most prestigious newspaper in the country?
Instaputz has a good take on this too.
(I plagiarized this title, but I’m giving credit, so it’s okay.)