Plagiarism plagiarism

The following appeared as an "Editors' Note" in the New York Times, July 11, 1991:

An article on July 3 described a controversy involving allegations of plagiarism at Boston University's College of Communication. In a commencement address in May, the dean of the college, H. Joachim Maitre, repeated virtually word for word passages from an article by a PBS film critic. In the speech, Mr. Maitre did not acknowledge or credit the article.

The Times account acknowledged that the controversy had first been reported in The Boston Globe on July 2. But it should also have noted that the quotations it cited from Mr. Maitre's speech were taken from the Globe article.

Besides the quotations from Mr. Maitre's speech, the Times article included a passage of five paragraphs that closely resembled five paragraphs in the Globe article. The passage involved comparisons of the same sets of quotations from the disputed texts. Although the Times article also reflected independent investigation of the controversy and interviews by the Times reporter, it was in this instance improperly dependent on the Globe account.

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