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Archive for July 24th, 2011

I read Jack of Kent’s blog post….

1. Hari is not young.  He knew what he was doing and the score. Plagiarism is wrong.

2.  I personally give little thought to the reputation of the journalists I read – with a few exceptions.  I am more interested in the content. Most / Many journalists have little specialist expertise in the field they write about – compared to the expert practitioner, academic or researcher.  Many journalists have to cover a wide brief within a field. The expertise valued in the journalist lies in finding the story and laying it out clearly with interest.  Where the journalist writes as expert, as some do  – then his or her words may be weighed in that context and compared to other experts – and a judgment formed by the reader.

3. It was mildly amusing (the Hari hashtag on twitter) at first – but as often happens on twitter and in blogs, it turned nasty and vindictive.

4.  I do hope for the sake of those who hounded – forensically or otherwise – that Hari has come to no personal harm.  Losing a pretty valueless prize (The Orwell Prize) – all prizes have little value – is not the end of the world.

5. Is journalism a profession? I do not think it is.  Rather as law has become – it is a business.

6.  Hari plagiarised and added colour to what may have otherwise been rather dull interviews.  In the grand scheme of things, while wrong, hardly a hanging offence or going to the very ‘root of evil’.

7.  Was it so necessary for the pack to get precious about it and engage in forensic evisceration and destruction of a reputation?   Would it not have been kinder – and just as effective – to have used humour to ‘call him out’ and persuade him not to engage in such matters?

8.  The pursuit of Hari reminded me of Lord of The Flies.  Kindness and humanity is better before the event – rather than an after the event absolution (For the hounders).

9.  A plagiarism on all your houses.

(PS.. for the avoidance of doubt – the work done by Jack of Kent was balanced and fair  and he had the courage to flag the issue up.)

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