Final Word from Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Even before Time and CNN decided to reinstate Fareed Zakaria after what they called "unintentional" and "isolated" plagiarism or a "journalistic lapse," Respekt made the wise decision to keep running translations of his articles. Many people around the world had called for harsher measures against Zakaria than a mere suspension, such as the loss of his TV show and column, but few asked whether it's fair to put such emphasis on just one aspect of journalism. Should it be a greater "crime" to plagiarize a few sentences than to intentionally misquote a source, take something out of context, cover up essential information, write fluff pieces for advertisers or take part in smear campaigns? If Time Warner (and Respekt) had opted for a stricter punishment, it would have tended to elevate plagiarism to the single biggest journalistic crime, merely because search engines now make it easier than the others to detect.[Czech Republic GPS Economia television]

Glossary of difficult words

lapse - a temporary failure of concentration, memory or judgment;

fluff piece - (informal) an unimportant news story, often that serves to glorify the subject;

to detect - to discover or identify the presence or existence of.


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