Tuesday, 3 July 2012

Disgraceful; Fabricating or Plagiarising Writing.

If something irked me this week, it's probably this story;

Intern Fired from Wall Street Journal for Creating Fake Sources and Quotes

Source: Liane Membis.

An intern who probably worked hard enough to get that place with the Wall Street Journal is faking sources and quotes? You don't even have a career yet and you're already being dishonest?! 

Too lazy to find a source? Too arrogant to think that you could get away with fabrication? 

Why not create sources by interviewing individuals connected to the story? She could have easily gone to the streets to interview people. I am confident that people would have answered her questions, especially if it was going to be posted in a paper! 

If you couldn't find any source, why couldn't you just say 'I can't find any'? Telling the truth is much better than lying. I doubt they'd think you're incompetent if you couldn't find a source. 

For someone who has gone to Yale (and I'm not insinuating that those who attend type of schools are morally rich or bankrupt or anything), you'd think that they would understand the importance of truthfulness and referencing the correct sources. At university they tell you over and over again the importance of referencing correctly and using the correct sources. I'm starting to question if she did this during her education at Yale too. 

Liane appears to have a thorough experience when it comes to extracurriculars, education and work and she's interning for a respectable online newspaper, yet throws that all away because she couldn't say;

''I can't find any sources''.

She has completely disregarded what the WSJ stands for. WSJ have taken the appropriate action by removing the article in question and by firing her

Who is going to take her on as an intern now? A simple Google search of her name would bring up this disgraceful story. 

There are plenty of aspiring writers who would have loved to have the chance to intern for the WSJ and who would have taken pride in their work and ensure that it is of great quality. 

Your writing reflects on you as a person. Your writing also reflects on the organisation you're working for. If you can't be passionate enough to at least admit that you can't write certain things or to attempt getting the sources you require, I'm thinking a career in writing is probably not for you. 

I'm not a writer, I'm a mere blogger sharing my life experiences and the like, but even I understand the importance of quoting the correct sources and not fabricating sources or making up stories. 

But that is not all. According to a post by Dave Lucas, Liane has been plagiarising from other websites. She's since then taken down her personal and blogging websites, Facebook and Twitter. 

Pressures to meet deadlines probably got the best of Liane when it came to her article for WSJ. I don't think plagiarising images from another website is justifiable. I would have loved to have read her reasons for doing what she did but it appears that she doesn't want to do that... or at least not yet. Her response (or lack of it) tells me that she's embarrassed and possibly ashamed of what she did, I don't blame her for that. I wish her the best.