July 28, 2003


PLAGIARISM, FABRICATION, AND OTHER GOOD CAREER MOVES: Back when I took journalism classes in college, one of the first things they taught us was not to plagiarize. Not only was it unethical, but doing such a thing, my profs always said, was the sort of thing that could get you blackballed from working in journalism for life. If only it really worked that way...
Jayson Blair, the man whose lies, prevarications, and general incompetence brought down the editorial regime of the world's most popular newspaper, has accepted two magazine writing assignments- a piece for Jane Magazine on workplace stress, and a review for Esquire of "Shattered Glass," the forthcoming biopic of New Republic plagiarist Stephen Glass. Glass himself, meanwhile, has been commissioned to write a piece for Rolling Stone, while Mike Barnicle, fired from the Boston Globe in 1998 after years of documented plagiarism and prevarication, continues to appear on MSNBC nearly every day.
Leave aside Blair's hypocrisy in continuing to accept writing work, considering his infamous declaration that "Jayson Blair the journalist had to die." How the hell can any of these editors justify hiring writers with such a well-documented history of journalistic misconduct? I know my respect for GQ, Jane, and Rolling Stone, never high to begin with, has once again taken a nosedive.
Giving Jayson Blair a writing assignment makes about as much sense as hiring Robert Downey, Jr. to be the new drug czar.

Posted by Stephen Silver at July 28, 2003 11:40 PM
Post a comment

Remember personal info?