Daily Archives: September 25, 2012

“How can USA Today claim Rowling “exclusive” when NYer has huge piece this week?” tweets Drew Kerr.

The answer is in the third paragraph of USA Today’s piece, Drew: “In her only U.S. newspaper interview before Thursday’s publication of The Casual Vacancy…”

* Posted Monday – After “Harry Potter,” J.K. Rowling’s first novel for adults (
* Posted Tuesday – Exclusive: J.K. Rowling takes career in new direction (

Amy Wallace writes in the new issue of Los Angeles Magazine that when she emailed Jonah Lehrer, “he responded right away” and that “despite the avalanche of coverage, he said, I was only the third person to contact him for comment.”

She adds: “Apparently Lehrer wasn’t the only person guilty of laziness. Or was it that a potential response from Lehrer might not jibe with what the commentariat wanted to say?”

Jonah Lehrer: Reporters aren’t bothering to get his no comment?

Lehrer, by the way, declined to answer Wallace’s questions. (Who were the other two reporters who contacted Lehrer? Wallace told me she didn’t ask.)

Of course, I would have loved to have gotten a comment from Lehrer, but…

Here’s what happened on the morning of June 19, when I posted the first example of Lehrer’s plagiarism:

I called editor Nicholas Thompson about 9:30 a.m. CT and asked if he was aware that Lehrer’s post from a week earlier was a rewrite of an October, 2011, Wall Street Journal piece. He said he wasn’t. Thompson told me he’d call Lehrer in California. The editor called back a short time later and said he couldn’t reach Lehrer, that it was early on the West Coast. He then gave me this comment for posting: “It’s a mistake. We’re not happy. It won’t happen again.” I was never called back with Lehrer’s comment – or no comment.

I put my post up at 9:53 a.m., and then watched as other publications did their Google searches and found more examples of Lehrer’s self-plagiarism.

From a June 20 New York Times story:

Mr. Lehrer’s troubles began on Tuesday morning, when the media blogger Jim Romenesko noted that a June 12 post on The Frontal Cortex, Mr. Lehrer’s blog for The New Yorker, titled “Why Smart People Are Stupid,” included material recycled from a post he had written last October for The Wall Street Journal.

Within a few hours, New York magazine’s Daily Intel and other blogs had tracked down a number of other instances of self-duplication from Mr. Lehrer’s writing for Wired, the New York Times Magazine, and other publications. …

Mr. Lehrer, reached by telephone, expressed remorse about the self-borrowings but declined to comment further.

My boldface, by the way.

* Caught getting creative (
* Lehrer’s already stretching the truth again (

A 57-year-old journalist writes to Salon advice columnist Cary Tennis:

I recently quit my job as a staff writer for a weekly newspaper. …I applied for unemployment and was denied! I am now in the process of an appeal. The crux of my problem is this: I feel so discouraged and depressed I can barely get myself to function. I now have no income, and loads of free time.

The sob story goes on, and Tennis eventually advises the correspondent:

Go apologize and ask for your job back.
Because you have put yourself in a terrible spot. Will they take you back? I sure hope so. It’s worth a try.

* I quit my writing job after being passed over for editor (

Alex Green, editor of the student newspaper at Bryan College in Dayton, Tenn., heard over the summer that his Biblical Studies professor was leaving the school. He emailed the teacher, David Morgan, and got a confirmation — and, somewhat oddly, an attached statement from the Christian liberal arts school’s president that said the prof was off “to pursue other opportunities.”

The student editor later learned there was more to the story: Morgan had been arrested in June and faced charges after “after having attempted to meet with a minor child” at a gas station. Green wrote a story based on public records and was prepared to run it in last Friday’s Bryan College Triangle. Then school president Dr. Stephen Livesay ordered it killed.

Still, Green was determined to get the word out. He printed his story and a sidebar and distributed them on Monday. (They’re both posted after the jump.)

“I placed them around campus and at the doors of dorm rooms and at public areas around the school,” he tells Romenesko readers. “They were primarily in the main administration building, the library and the student center. … [A PDF] was emailed and entrusted to a select few current students and alumni in the case that fake papers began to surface.”

Green knows he could be expelled for distributing the story, but “the school has not made any comment or remark about me or my future at the school at this point,” he says. “The president has planned a campus-wide announcement at 4:30 p.m. As of now, that is all I’m aware of in terms of their response.”

Here’s an excerpt from his sidebar about the decision to publish the piece on his own:

I am aware that on the heels of the Penn State football tragedy, the minds of many people will jump without much thought to similarities between us and them.

Bryan College is not Penn State.

Had one individual in the Penn State program stepped up and revealed the truth about the actions of Jerry Sandusky, there would have been no fallout 14 years later.

Joe Paterno could have died a hero. Instead, he died a goat. Penn State could have been praised. Instead, they are broken.

Bryan College is not Penn State because there are people here that will not attempt to save face by dusting over the arrest of Dr. David Morgan.

Printing this story will not cause a Penn State situation for Bryan. I believe it will prevent one.

That’s why I’m dispensing it.

“We are Penn State” was their approach. “Christ above all” is ours.

* Charlotte TV reporter’s unconfirmed tweet about Yankee testing positive gets negative reaction (

* * @dantordjman (protected account)

* New York Times Co. to sell its remaining interest in and record an after-tax gain of $100 million. (
* NYT union members to management: “The company’s demands are untenable and destructive.” (

* Globe and Mail disciplines columnist Margaret Wente over plagiarism accusations. (
* Wente: “I’m far from perfect. I make mistakes. But I’m not a serial plagiarist.” ( | (Editor’s memo)
* Joshua Benton: Atlantic’s new Quartz business news site feels 2012-born in several ways. (
* SB Nation relaunches and hires its first editorial director. (
* Here’s the full list of 2012 Online Journalism Award winners. (
* Baton Rouge Advocate launches its New Orleans edition. (AP via
* Newsprint is alive and well on the walls of a new exhibition at the National Gallery of Art. (
* Revamped Myspace looks “pretty,” but will anyone bother to check it out? (
* A blistering response to New York Times’ data centers story. (

What happened here? I asked Round Rock (TX) Leader editor Brad Stutzman. “Usually we just have a yes or not question and we forgot to plug in the names,” he explained over the phone. “Romney got the larger number here [in the online poll].”
* There are more “news bloopers” on Romenesko’s Pinterest page (

Seattle Times: “Hawks steal one” || Tacoma News Tribune: “Thanks for the call, refs” || Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: “NFL embarrassment” || Appleton Post-Crescent: “Taken away” || Oshkosh Northwestern: “Grand larceny” || Wisconsin State Journal: “Speechless in Seattle” || Stevens Point Journal: “Outrage”

UPDATED: The Green Bay Press-Gazette‘s pages are after the jump. Read More