Monday, April 23, 2007

The Daily Background: Double Plagiarism at CBS News

The Daily Background watches as journamalist Katie Couric commits double plagiarism:

The Daily Background » Blog Archive » Double plagiarism at CBS News: By Arlen Parsa: Welcome, Raw Story and Reuters readers! Please consider subscribing to our RSS feed for more content like this...

Katie Couric’s news team has admitted to committing plagiarism... with an almost wholesale copy and paste job of a commentary written for the Wall Street Journal. Couric has a daily webcast segment which CBS calls “Katie Couric’s Notebook” which is regularly promoted on their website as well as an official YouTube account. The segments (typically lasting about a minute) are portrayed as Couric’s own personal opinions on various relevant topics. She signs off each one by saying “I’m Katie Couric, and that’s a page from my notebook.” On the CBS website, they are posted under the name “Katie Couric.”

But last week, Couric read nearly word-for-word a commentary piece published in the Wall Street Journal about libraries. The network promoted Couric’s segment as her own work- not the work of a producer or the Journal. “Only On The Web: Sales of juvenile books have risen dramatically in recent years, as kids skip the library and head for the store. Katie Couric says the local library still has much to offer,” a promotional description read. It turns out that Couric does not even write her own commentaries; CBS has admitted that they are written by her team of producers in first person to make it seem as though she is sharing candid thoughts. A CBS producer has been fired for plagiarism, although the company has not released the producer’s name.

Obviously, this type of situation would never have happened in the first place had Couric bothered to write her own brief commentaries instead of reading someone else’s work from a TelePrompTer.

Ironically instead of only portraying someone else’s work as hers in the library “Page from my notebook” as she normally does, Couric portrayed someone else’s work which was already being portrayed as someone else’s work: a double case of plagiarism.

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