Zakaria accused of lifting material from New Yorker and AP for TV scripts

Our Bad Media

Fareed Zakaria ripped material from The New Yorker, The Economist, the Associated Press and other outlets for his CNN show "GPS," the sphynxlike media critics @blippoblappo and @crushingbort write in their latest set of accusations against Zakaria.

One of their strongest examples includes narration from a documentary called "Justice for Sergei" that inspires similar narration from Zakaria.

They also show instances when "GPS" scripts lifted sentences without attribution, such as a 2012 segment that draws from a New Yorker article by Adam Gopnik and a segment and an Al Jazeera article (click to view the image bigger).


Some of the items in this latest docket require the reader to take an expansive view of plagiarism: Sentences that appear to summarize the reporting of others without credit, for example.

But they do point to one instance when Zakaria referred to events of "last year," as did an article they say was his source. But that article was published in 2011, and Zakaria's program was in 2012.

"Some might take issue with our 'anonymity,'" they write. Indeed, Steve Buttry wrote recently that "I think it is only anonymity that harms [@blippoblappo and @crushingbort's] credibility. Their substance appears unassailable."

They write that "Reporters rely heavily on 'tips' forwarded to their inbox from advocacy groups, press flacks, government officials, and other organizations whose contributions are never disclosed to readers, to say nothing of their interests." (Indeed, @blippoblappo has alerted me twice to their plans for new posts, and has never replied to my requests for an interview. They did consent to an interview with TPM's Tom Kludt after they got Benny Johnson fired with a similar examination of his work.)

I've asked CNN for comment and will, of course, update when I hear back.

Previously: Fareed Zakaria gets even more plagiarism accusations

  • Andrew Beaujon

    Andrew Beaujon reported on the media for Poynter from 2012 to 2015. He was previously arts editor at and managing editor of Washington City Paper. He's the author of the 2006 book "Body Piercing Saved My Life," about Christian rock and evangelical Christian culture.


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