College newspaper fires editor who it says plagiarized ‘from at least 22 sources’

The Criterion

The Criterion of Colorado Mesa University fired its online editor “after learning that as many as 16 of the opinion pieces she has written since October 2012 contain content plagiarized from at least 22 sources,” the paper writes in an unbylined piece that doesn’t name the editor.

“So far, The Criterion’s editorial staff has determined that the former Online Editor plagiarized content from Alternet, The Associated Press,, The Chicago Reader,, E! Online,, The National Post, The New York Daily News,The New York Post, the web portal,, Slate, The St. Paul Pioneer Press, Time Magazine, The Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post,” the post says.

The post says The Criterion will “divulge any and all pertinent information as it comes to light” and asks anyone aware of additional plagiarism to contact Editor-in-Chief Levi Meyer.

We have made it easy to comment on posts, however we require civility and encourage full names to that end (first initial, last name is OK). Please read our guidelines here before commenting.

  • burghprof

    I also agree with this. News judgment has gone out the window; anything that one or two silly journalists think should be national news ends up on Internet news websites, various broadcast and/or cable news stations, and sometimes even on the AP wire. While I’m on my rant, picking good sources over bad sources was gone even sooner; most journalists now seem to quote anyone and everyone they can reach by phone or email, and it doesn’t seem to matter if the sources know what they are talking about, whether they have conflicts of interest, etc. (As usual, TV news and the internet are much bigger offenders than newspapers, magazines, or wire services.)

  • menloman

    I’d give everyone a pass for not reading E! online.

  • dennis128

    It’s called lazy, with the inability to think for themselves. There’s a difference between being well-read and taking someone else’s words. I fired a columnist for plagiarism and her excuse was “everybody does it.” NOT ACCEPTABLE. klkhall3

  • burghprof

    Apparently no one at Colorado Mesa University reads both the student newspaper and also Alternet, Associated Press,, The Chicago Reader,, E! Online,, The National Post, The New York Daily News,The New York Post,,, Slate, The St. Paul Pioneer Press, Time magazine, The Wall Street Journal and/or the Washington Post. If anyone at CMU read any of those publications plus the student newspaper, the plagiarism would have been caught before 22 times.

  • burghprof

    I was unaware that journalism was even taught at all at Colorado Mesa University! U. of Colorado, Colorado State U., U of Northern Colorado, and U. of Denver, certainly, but Colorado Mesa University??? (Let’s not call it CMU; CMU is the world-class Carnegie Mellon University.)

  • dccyclist

    I don’t think a college student’s poor judgment should be national news. These are not professionals.

  • wendy @ tekhne

    What’s more shocking to me than the plagiarism itself is the fact that the online version of The Criterion provides no links to supporting information in any of its reported stories or opinion pieces. What a huge disservice to its readers and staff in not demanding depth, nuance and engagement by linking to expert source material.

    What kind of journalism culture are they teaching at CMU?

  • JTFloore

    which raises the obvious questions: how often do editorial writers write editorials that use information that comes from someone else but is not attributed to a source? how many columnists do the same thing? how many reporters — even those respected scribes at the top of the food chain — do the same thing? my guess is they all do. how could they not do it and still function? and if all that is true — and it is — then they are all guilty of plagiarism as it has come to be strictly defined in recent years. of course, that definition is ludicrous. we need to chill out about all these things being examples of plagiarism because they are not.