Early that month, I received an email from a friend who works in the St. Louis media industry. The email contained several paragraphs about Maplewood’s Home Wine Kitchen making and selling its own jams, sauces, etc.
The author of the article was not included. I assumed it was generated from Home Wine Kitchen, and was something akin to what we’d post in our announcements or Local Voices sections. So I went to the restaurant, took my own photo of some of the products, then put it all on Patch as an article. I credited the story to Home Wine Kitchen at the bottom.
Congrats to Miner for not crediting those words to himself in the first place and for getting out in front of this now.
But can we talk for a second about the plague of emails from acquaintances? This is the third recent iteration of what my coworker Craig Silverman calls the “Maureen Dowd Plagiarism Defense”: Recently Josh Linkner told blogger Chris Dixon he’d thought he was copying information from a friend’s email into a blog post he wrote for Fast Company. In December, a Web producer at WUSA in Washington, D.C., said she’d accidentally plagiarized a Washington Post story because a coworker had pasted some paragraphs from it into an email to her; she’d thought it was a press release to be rewritten.
Dowd, famously, said words by blogger Josh Marshall ended up in one of her columns because she “wanted to weave” in something a friend had told her.