Why plagiarists do it.
Why plagiarists do it.
Media criticism.
April 26 2006 6:57 PM

Why Plagiarists Do It

Because they can.

(Continued from Page 1)

Even If You Get Caught, You'll Probably Get Away With It: Trudy Lieberman reported in the July/August 1995 Columbia Journalism Reviewthat many journalists caught plagiarizing paid little or no price for their transgressions. Lieberman describes a "circle-the-wagons" mentality in the news business when plagiarism breaks out. Providing a number of examples, she also notes the double standard of journalists who gave Sen. Joseph Biden holy grief when he committed plagiarism in a presidential campaign speech but cut their colleagues slack.

How severely will the book industry punish Kaavya Viswanathan? I predict that she'll weather the storm with all the grace and denial of Doris Kearns Goodwin.



Thanks to Rachel Shteir and others who let me pick their brains and promised not to accuse me of plagiarism. Send your plagiarism tips to slate.pressbox@gmail.com. (E-mail may be quoted by name unless the writer stipulates otherwise.)

Jack Shafer was Slate's editor at large. You can follow him on Twitter or email him at Shafer.Politico@gmail.com.

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