A Guide For Journalists: Understanding Why Malcolm Gladwell Is A Plagiarist

by @blippoblappo & @crushingbort

This morning, we published a piece on a pattern of heavy borrowing in Malcolm Gladwell’s recent work at The New Yorker. We came to the only conclusion merited by the facts at hand: Gladwell had plagiarized. But that’s not how Gladwell’s editor sees it. Instead, David Remnick stated what Gladwell did was very much “not plagiarism.” Unlike the public lashing he gave Jonah Lehrer in 2012 for an arguably lesser offense of self-plagiarism, Remnick seems to have had the magazine fall on its sword for Gladwell 

As with our findings with Fareed Zakaria and Benny Johnson, a few people have commented that these are “just facts” or “just usual paraphrasing.” They’re wrong, but we want to help them see why.

The following exchange with Vox.com’s Joseph Stromberg should be useful for any journalist unsure about the seriousness of Gladwell’s journalistic sins.

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2 thoughts on “A Guide For Journalists: Understanding Why Malcolm Gladwell Is A Plagiarist

  1. Stromberg must have skipped his writing classes in college and he certainly never took a journalism class if he thinks this is not plagiarism. This is not using the wrong format to make attribution. This is no attribution at all. And the position and order of the words are too much of a coincidence. But then, he has a B.A. in Environmental Studies and Anthropology (https://www.linkedin.com/pub/joseph-stromberg/28/a8/923) Wonder if anyone ever checked his “research” papers in college.

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