Thursday, February 24, 2005

Andrew Sullivan, uncredited

In his most recent Sunday Times column, Andrew Sullivan pontificates about the spread of iPods and how they have allowed people to retreat from civil society into little personal bubbles. It's a very good piece.

The only problem is that Christine Rosen wrote a bigger, better version of this piece several weeks ago in the New Atlantis. Her essay, "The Age of Egocasting," covered the social and societal effects of the remote control, TiVo, and the iPod. It is crackerjack stuff. And it is hard to imagine that her piece was not the inspiration for Sullivan's newspaper column. Yet Sullivan does not mention Rosen's piece even once.

This is no great journalistic sin. It isn't plagiarism. In fact you could make an argument that cannibalizing the work of your betters without giving them proper credit is one of the founding precepts of journalism. Indeed, this sort of thing happens all the time.

But it is unfair and ungracious nonetheless. Andrew Sullivan, who once edited the august New Republic, should know better.


Michael said...

Why are you surprised by this?

Sullivan is (in)famous for not using hyperlinks in his own blog where it is both trivially accomplished, and expected by the norms of the medium.

Duane said...

I'm glad you don't see Sullivan's article as actual plagarism. Now go read my new post titled:

L.A. Confidential: Edward Jay Epstein's new book, The Big Picture, uncovers Hollywood's dirtiest secret: the real economics of moviemaking.

Just stealing from my betters......