February 12, 2015

Gawker | Politico

Jared Keller, news director at Mic, has been fired from his position at the startup after a Gawker investigation unearthed “at least 20” plagiarized passages from a variety of news organizations including The Associated Press, Reuters and Storyful.

Jake Horowitz, Mic’s editor-in-chief, provided Poynter with the following statement:

Jared Keller is no longer employed at Mic. Plagiarism is unacceptable in any form and our editorial policies make that very clear. We appreciate Gawker bringing these issues to our attention, and as we continue our internal review, we’ll be transparently updating any story that violates our standards.

Mic takes responsibility for allowing this to happen. We’re going to use this as an opportunity to improve as an organization, and we’re already soliciting candid feedback from our editorial staff about what we can be doing better. We’re committed to making all of the changes necessary to ensure that Mic is consistently exceeding the high standards we have for ourselves.

This news was originally reported by Gawker.

Mic confirmed Wednesday it was investigating Keller based on accusations of plagiarism raised by Gawker Wednesday afternoon, sending the following statement to both Politico and Gawker:

Plagiarism is unacceptable. We have strict editorial standards and conduct ethics trainings for new employees. Using detection software, our copy editing team also checks articles for plagiarism prior to publication. Mic takes any allegations of plagiarism seriously and will conduct an internal review to determine the appropriate next steps.

The plagiarized passages appeared in stories written by Keller between the months of July and February, according to Gawker. Some were cribbed word-for-word without attribution, while some were rewrites containing “an inline link and in a few cases with a hat-tip at the very bottom.”

RELATED: Is it original? An editor’s guide to identifying plagiarism

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Benjamin Mullin is the managing editor of Poynter.org. He previously reported for Poynter as a staff writer, Google Journalism Fellow and Naughton Fellow, covering journalism…
Benjamin Mullin

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