Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Man Who Stares at Other People’s Writing

Jon Ronson is a noted British journalist, documentarian, and author of The Men Who Stare at Goats, which was adapted into a film by George Clooney. As far as I can tell from his latest article in theGuardian, he is also prone to using the words and ideas of others without attribution, a habit usually referred to as plagiarism.

I happened upon the article (“Whodunnit?”) by chance and would not have noticed anything untoward had its opening not rung a distant bell. The article deals with criminal profiling and its discontents, in particular a noted scandal of British justice from the 1980s. The opening section, however, which describes the founding of criminal profiling, is clearly lifted without attribution from Malcolm Gladwell’s article “Dangerous Minds,” published by the New Yorker in 2007 — albeit with some minor changes. The most striking similarities appear below.

Continue reading at Pajamas Media.