Fareed Zakaria: Washington Post Joins CNN and Time in Suspending the Popular GPS TV Show Host for Plagiarism, Has his Credibility been Tarnished for Good?
Aug 14, 2012 02:01 PM EDT
After one of Time Warner's star journalist (both CNN and Time are owned by Warner) Fareed Zakaria was suspended last week in an embarrassing case of plagiarism, The Washington Post, which also publishes the TV Host's articles on a regular basis. announced that it will refrain from publishing any of Zakaria's work for a month.
The Atlantic's Jeffrey Goldberg released an email exchange between himself and Zakaria, in which Zakaria states that quote-theft is a common phenomenon and that often the interviewer is never cited when quotes from a particular interview are being used.
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In the email, Zakaria said, "I think it is quite untrue that it is standard journalistic practice to name the interviewer when quoting from an interview. Look through the New Yorker, the New York Times, or any other prestigious publication and you will see that most quotes from interviews do NOT mention the name of the interviewer. This is a subject close to my heart since I interview people every Sunday. On Monday, we get clips of the papers, magazines, and blogs that quote from these interviews. Most do not mention my name. Many do not even mention CNN. They simply say, "In an interview, "Mr. X said. . ." I wish they did but they don't," as reported by The Atlantic.
Last week, Zakaria received a month's suspension from CNN as well as Time for lifting quotes from an article without attribution. In article on gun control published by Time and written by the popular and respected CNN GPS Host, editors found a few passages closely resembling an article on the same topic that was published by the The New Yorker Magazine in April. Zakaria's article has since been removed from the Time webpage.
Jill Lepore, who traced certain gun-laws in a historical context, wrote the article in question. Time editors soon realized that the star journalist had lifted sentences straight from Lepore's article.
As the Washington Post points out Lepore's article read, "Laws that banned the carrying of concealed weapons were passed in Kentucky and Louisiana in 1813. Other states soon followed...As the governor of Texas explained in 1893, the 'mission of the concealed deadly weapon is murder.' "
While Zakaria's went this way, "Laws that banned the carrying of concealed weapons were passed in Kentucky and Louisiana in 1813. Other states soon followed...As the governor of Texas (Texas!) explained in 1893, the 'mission of the concealed deadly weapon is murder,' "as reiterated by the Washington Post.
Zakaria has apologized to both CNN and Time. He also released an apology to his fans on the social media site, Facebook, where he said, "Media reporters have pointed out that paragraphs in my Time column on gun control...bear close similarities to ...Jill Lepore's essay ...They are right. I made a terrible mistake. It is a serious lapse and one that is entirely my fault. I apologize unreservedly to her, to my editors at Time and CNN, and to my readers and viewers everywhere," Fareed Zakaria Facebook page.
Of course, given Zakaria's popularity and star power, both CNN and Time cannot risk taking a greater form of penance than a suspension for a brief while. However, the damages done to Zakaria's journalistic credibility might be permanently scared.
Time Magazine has released a statement stating that it has accepted Zakaria's apology, but announced that it would be suspending the columnist for a month.
In addition to his popular News show on CNN called Global Public Square better known as GPS, Zakaria is a columnist for Time. He has written several best sellers.