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Ben Domenech Resigns
Washington Post ^ | March 24, 2006 | Jim Brady

Posted on 03/24/2006 10:47:49 AM PST by RWR8189

In the past 24 hours, we learned of allegations that Ben Domenech plagiarized material that appeared under his byline in various publications prior to washingtonpost.com contracting with him to write a blog that launched Tuesday.

An investigation into these allegations was ongoing, and in the interim, Domenech has resigned, effective immediately.

When we hired Domenech, we were not aware of any allegations that he had plagiarized any of his past writings. In any cases where allegations such as these are made, we will continue to investigate those charges thoroughly in order to maintain our journalistic integrity.

Plagiarism is perhaps the most serious offense that a writer can commit or be accused of. Washingtonpost.com will do everything in its power to verify that its news and opinion content is sourced completely and accurately at all times.

(Excerpt) Read more at blog.washingtonpost.com ...


TOPICS: Extended News; News/Current Events; US: District of Columbia
KEYWORDS: domenech; resignation; weblogs; wp
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1 posted on 03/24/2006 10:47:50 AM PST by RWR8189
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To: RWR8189

Yes... anyone who is caught plagarising should be fired.

Isn't that right Senator Biden?


2 posted on 03/24/2006 10:51:19 AM PST by So Cal Rocket (Proud Member: Internet Pajama Wearers for Truth)
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To: RWR8189
Plagiarism is perhaps the most serious offense that a writer can commit or be accused of.

Golly, I don't know about that. Two words: Walter Duranty.

3 posted on 03/24/2006 10:56:01 AM PST by D-Chivas
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To: RWR8189
plagiarized any of his past writings

Perhaps I'm confused, but how is it "plagiarism" if you recycle your own stuff?

4 posted on 03/24/2006 10:57:24 AM PST by r9etb
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To: RWR8189
Ben Domenech Must Resign
5 posted on 03/24/2006 10:57:40 AM PST by Anti-Bubba182
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To: Anti-Bubba182
Just read the American Thinker article myself. I hope WaPo didn't hire the guy just to embarrass him, he has done this before and why didn't they know it?
6 posted on 03/24/2006 10:59:54 AM PST by BallyBill (Serial Hit-N-Run poster)
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To: RWR8189
"Plagiarism is perhaps the most serious offense that a writer can commit or be accused of."

Most serious? How about putting Judith Miller and Armstrong Williams as worse.

7 posted on 03/24/2006 11:01:10 AM PST by ex-snook (John 17 - So that they may be one just as we are one.)
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To: RWR8189

Good. Now how many others at the Post will have the same amount of class and do the same. As well as the NY Slimes.


8 posted on 03/24/2006 11:02:39 AM PST by Ron in Acreage (Liberal Democrats-Party before country, surrender before victory, generous with other peoples money.)
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To: r9etb
how is it "plagiarism" if you recycle your own stuff?

I think they mean "if any of his past writings were plagiarized".

9 posted on 03/24/2006 11:04:05 AM PST by Izzy Dunne (Hello, I'm a TAGLINE virus. Please help me spread by copying me into YOUR tag line.)
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To: Ron in Acreage
how many others at the Post will have the same amount of class and do the same. As well as the NY Slimes.

I'll bet you can count them on the fingers of one foot.

10 posted on 03/24/2006 11:04:48 AM PST by Izzy Dunne (Hello, I'm a TAGLINE virus. Please help me spread by copying me into YOUR tag line.)
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To: RWR8189
Plagiarism is perhaps the most serious offense that a writer can commit or be accused of.

It's not even in the top three.

1. Undermining national security.

2. Causing disrespect in our country and around the world for America, American leaders and military.

3. Continually publishing biased news articles and mindless editorials to try to shift public opinion to the Left, rather than trying to report the truth.

The Washington Post should fire itself.

11 posted on 03/24/2006 11:06:08 AM PST by Rocky (Air America: Robbing the poor to feed the Left)
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To: RWR8189

It should be noted that, so far as I can tell, NOBODY has actually accused Ben of plagerizing THEIR work.

All the charges are based on finding copied work that does not contain attribution.

But there is no way to tell if Ben had permission to use the works without attribution. Until a writer comes forward and actually says that something Ben wrote was taken from him without permission, he has not committed plagerism, he's merely copied stuff without letting us know he copied it.

BTW, we just had an argument in a local blog. The owner of the blog kicked out all his other contributers. In doing so, the software supposedly required that he either delete every threat written by the contributers who were deleted, or to put his name as the "contributer", which is what he did.

But, all the other contributers eventually said they were OK with it.

So while the blogger has his name on stuff he didn't write, he isn't plagerizing or stealing, because he has permission.

Now, those other contributers went off and formed their own blog, and copied over the threads they were most proud of, under their own names.

If in 5 years any of these people come under fire by the left, these old posts will be dug up and the leftists will claim that someone is plagerizing because they are identical articles under different names on different blogs.

And if the other of the pair no longer keeps track of stuff, there may be no way of proving the charges false.

So, while I don't mind Ben resigning (I thought that the whole idea of a conservative blog attached to the post was stupid, Ben could already be read over at red state), I withhold judgement on him until someone makes a specific charge of plagerism of their own work.

I find Michelle Malkin is too quick to rush to judgment in her field, as if she is the arbiter of right and wrong just because she does blogging.


12 posted on 03/24/2006 11:06:18 AM PST by CharlesWayneCT
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To: So Cal Rocket
Yes... anyone who is caught plagarising should be fired.

The leftists have no clue to the fact that they've just shot themselves in the foot!

13 posted on 03/24/2006 11:13:22 AM PST by FormerLib (Kosova: "land stolen from Serbs and given to terrorist killers in a futile attempt to appease them.")
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To: CharlesWayneCT
It should be noted that, so far as I can tell, NOBODY has actually accused Ben of plagerizing THEIR work.

Salon.com has, giving examples here of their pieces which he ripped off. Gotta say, I hoped the kid would have better criteria. I mean, plagiarizing Salon.com? He's poisoning the well!

I read somewhere that Dana Milbank recommended this guy. Do you guys think it was a set-up? There is no shortage of experienced, qualified conservative writers -- why hire an ethically challenged kid instead, unless you are trying to make him look bad? They should be ashamed, and we should be suspicious.

14 posted on 03/24/2006 11:19:05 AM PST by rebrane
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To: rebrane

If they decide to no longer have a "conservative" blog, then it would seem they set him up.


15 posted on 03/24/2006 11:24:57 AM PST by stylin19a (Do you still have sex or are you already playing golf?)
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To: rebrane

If you read the article on Salon that you referenced, it doesn't include any mention of the authors who wrote the copied items.

Salon itself may not have given him permission to copy the stuff, but maybe those authors did. I can't know if he got permission or not, and any of those authors could come forward and say they didn't give him permission.

But why would Salon run an article mentioning passages from two of their writers, and NOT include a statement that their writers did NOT give him permission? Wouldn't they have contacted those authors to ask if he had permission?

So it seems strange that Salon would write this article and NOT include anything from the actual authors complaining about the copying . I believe they are all still alive.


16 posted on 03/24/2006 11:27:16 AM PST by CharlesWayneCT
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To: CharlesWayneCT; rebrane
This blog has a list of what he did wrong in his writing, and is linked on redstate's homepage right now.
17 posted on 03/24/2006 11:30:12 AM PST by summer
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To: CharlesWayneCT

Good point, I forgot that most of Salon's writers are probably freelancers, so we have no way of knowing.


18 posted on 03/24/2006 11:30:34 AM PST by rebrane
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To: rebrane
we should be suspicious

I read an article by someone saying how odd it was how he was hired -- there was no announcement of a job opening, no other writers were considered; just out of nowhere it seems, this job was created -- and he got it. Makes me wonder if the WaPo already knew what was about to erupt.
19 posted on 03/24/2006 11:32:24 AM PST by summer
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To: rebrane; All
Re my post #17 -- And, that blog I linked is asking the same questions now on my mind:

...But if these charges pan out and they don't fire him, they have no standards at all. Likewise, if they pan out, you have to ask yourself why the Post didn't do a better job of vetting him before they hired him.

Third, what could he have been thinking when he took the Post job? If anything on earth is predictable, it's that if the Post hired a lightning rod like Domenech, his work would be gone over with a fine toothed comb. Could he possibly not have anticipated this? If he did, why didn't he just come up with a decent excuse to say no?...

20 posted on 03/24/2006 11:37:02 AM PST by summer
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Comment #21 Removed by Moderator

To: RWR8189
I'm thankful that Domenech resigned immediately in order to avoid any more damage to all the ethical and original conservative bloggers out there. Plagiarism is completely wrong, independent of one's party affiliation. He did damage to the conservative movement with this deception.

Thankfully, this episode has proven once again that conservatives have principles. If a Leftie were caught in a similar crime, the libs would rally around him and make excuses. I'm figuring Red State will boot him very soon, and the Con Blogs have been brutal this morning. We police our own.

22 posted on 03/24/2006 11:58:52 AM PST by inkling
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To: D-Chivas

"Walter Duranty."


You don't mean the guy that totally fabricated stories in the 1930's about the heavenly bliss that was the USSR, and won a Pulitzer Prize for it?

The Prize the NY Times still keeps active and prominently displayed??


23 posted on 03/24/2006 12:00:07 PM PST by gobucks (Blissful Marriage: A result of a worldly husband's transformation into the Word's wife.)
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To: D-Chivas

I don't recall Duranty ever being accused of plagiarism. What he did was much worse: he was a stooge for Stalin and even won a Pulitzer (for what that's worth!) for distorting and covering up the Ukranian genocide during the dictator's infamous agrarian 'reforms.' The Times has a long record of liberal shamelessness.


24 posted on 03/24/2006 12:01:06 PM PST by Bernard Marx (Fools and fanatics are always certain of themselves, but the wise are full of doubts.)
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To: So Cal Rocket

NO, it says that plagarizers should run for president so we can have a lot of fun making fun of them.


25 posted on 03/24/2006 12:06:56 PM PST by tiki
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To: ex-snook
"Plagiarism is perhaps the most serious offense that a writer can commit or be accused of."

How about advocating violence or murder of political figures? This statement smacks loudly of elitism.

26 posted on 03/24/2006 12:09:10 PM PST by Hardastarboard (HEY - Billy Joe! You ARE an American Idiot!)
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To: CharlesWayneCT

I feel like Rip Van Winkle. Who is Ben Domanech?


27 posted on 03/24/2006 12:14:23 PM PST by churchillbuff
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To: CharlesWayneCT
there is no way to tell if Ben had permission to use the works without attribution

Without NOTED acknowledgement, what Ben did is plagiarism. Period.

If you quote, you must quote, and cite source. Right there, in the text. There is no such thing as "private" permission.

28 posted on 03/24/2006 12:22:08 PM PST by M. Thatcher
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To: RWR8189

I do some work with Ben, and have published some of his articles on the website I edit, Boundless.org

I'm planning to chat with him about it within a few days, and will post my findings here.

Let's try to assume that he's innocent until proven guilty.


29 posted on 03/24/2006 12:30:15 PM PST by Theo
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To: Bernard Marx
I don't recall Duranty ever being accused of plagiarism. What he did was much worse: he was a stooge for Stalin and even won a Pulitzer (for what that's worth!) for distorting and covering up the Ukranian genocide during the dictator's infamous agrarian 'reforms.' The Times has a long record of liberal shamelessness.

Yeah, that was my point. I quoted the WaPo piece that said plagiarism was the worst thing a writer could do. Then I cited Walter Duranty as something much worse than plagiarism.

30 posted on 03/24/2006 12:33:28 PM PST by D-Chivas
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To: summer

It's identical to the Salon site. And it is simply examples of where his writings were copies of other writings.

This isn't plagerism if he had permission. These weren't things he was REQUIRED to write in his own hand (as a thesis, for example).

Since I'm defending him I better say that I would hope to never do this without mentioning where I got the original from, or at least who the person was, even if I had permission. If I was required to keep anonymous, I would still say it wasn't my own words.

And I don't mind him resigning over this. I'm just saying we shouldn't accuse him of PLAGERISM until we know it's a plagerism case, rather than simply taking credit for stuff you didn't write.


31 posted on 03/24/2006 12:40:45 PM PST by CharlesWayneCT
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To: r9etb
Perhaps I'm confused, but how is it "plagiarism" if you recycle your own stuff?

Well, that's an interesting question, but when you recycle PJ O Rourke's stuff, that's definitely plagiarism. Daily Kos and Atrios have accumulated scores of examples of his plagiarism. The only mystery is how he went undetected for so long.

Domenech is a creationist, BTW. I'm not shedding tears over his demise.

32 posted on 03/24/2006 12:43:40 PM PST by Right Wing Professor
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To: M. Thatcher

You are wrong, because simply writing something doesn't carry a contract that the words were written by the person whose name is on it.

As an obvious example, some "authors" have a ghost writer actually WRITE the books, and never disclose the fact. We don't like it, but it isn't plagerism to have thier name on the book.

Because, they had PRIVATE PERMISSION, and in fact paid money, to put their name on their ghost writer's words.


33 posted on 03/24/2006 12:45:08 PM PST by CharlesWayneCT
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To: Right Wing Professor
Domenech is a creationist, BTW. I'm not shedding tears over his demise.

Hmmmm.... Makes one wonder if the WaPo hired him in order to fire him, eh?

34 posted on 03/24/2006 12:56:54 PM PST by r9etb
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To: So Cal Rocket

Cheats, liars, and plagiarists have no place in public or professional life. That's why I'm certain that the MSM will be demanding resignations from Joe Biden, Ted Kennedy, and a large number of other 'Rat frauds.


35 posted on 03/24/2006 1:00:38 PM PST by Enchante (Democrats: "We are ALL broken and worn out, our party & ideas, what else is new?")
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To: r9etb
Makes one wonder if the WaPo hired him in order to fire him, eh?

No. It's an embarrassment for the WaPo.

36 posted on 03/24/2006 1:01:38 PM PST by Right Wing Professor
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To: Right Wing Professor
No. It's an embarrassment for the WaPo.

And who are we to complain...? ;-)

37 posted on 03/24/2006 1:03:58 PM PST by r9etb
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To: inkling

Yes, while Dan Blather and Mary Mapes are STILL to this day treated as highly respected (gag) members of the MSM. Nothing wrong with what they did, huh, MSM?

I am glad that conservatives have once again shown we can emphasize principles over individuals and not defend the indefensible just because he is "one of us" or doing work for our cause(s). That's a fundamental difference between the vast majority of conservatives and the vast majority of spineless lying liberals.


38 posted on 03/24/2006 1:04:48 PM PST by Enchante (Democrats: "We are ALL broken and worn out, our party & ideas, what else is new?")
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To: r9etb

Well, every dark cloud has a silver lining!


39 posted on 03/24/2006 1:07:38 PM PST by Right Wing Professor
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To: RWR8189

Then should Senator Biden resign right now?


40 posted on 03/24/2006 1:14:13 PM PST by Paulus Invictus
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To: Enchante
I am glad that conservatives have once again shown we can emphasize principles over individuals and not defend the indefensible just because he is "one of us" or doing work for our cause(s).

Not so fast... it appears that RedState is going to the mattresses for this one.

41 posted on 03/24/2006 1:19:17 PM PST by rebrane
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To: r9etb; Right Wing Professor
Such recycling is considered a grave form of academic dishonesty. When you submit a paper or proposal to a journal or conference, it is expected to be original work, and while you allowed to cite yourself, you are not allowed to take the same work, re-title it, and submit it to multiple sources, or to lift large portions of your previous work, and copy them verbatim, without citation. In these days of cut-and-paste, it may be an even greater problem than before.
42 posted on 03/24/2006 1:25:40 PM PST by RightWingAtheist ( EveningStar is back; new tagline pending)
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To: RightWingAtheist

Thank you.


43 posted on 03/24/2006 1:29:01 PM PST by r9etb
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To: BallyBill
I think the whole idea of having a Blog as PART of a newspaper is silly. Blogs, by their nature, are anarchic and just don't fit well within a corporate news structure. If the WaPo wants to feature blogs, they should have a LINK page. They can divide it into categories of Liberal & Conservative if they want but it should be understood that the Blogs are NOT part of the WaPo. Actually I think this is a good idea for most newspapers. Just establish a Blog LINK page online.

Oh, and if the WaPo does establish such a Blog LINK page, may I be so bold as to recommend the DUmmie FUnnies?

44 posted on 03/24/2006 1:37:26 PM PST by PJ-Comix ((Join the DUmmie FUnnies PING List for the FUNNIEST Blog on the Web)
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To: r9etb

You're welcome!


45 posted on 03/24/2006 1:40:13 PM PST by RightWingAtheist ( EveningStar is back; new tagline pending)
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To: D-Chivas

Apologies for my very poor reading skills today. I'm usually more careful. Yes, there are many things worse than simple plagiarism and what Duranty did is a classic example. The partisan crimes of Dan Rather and his dorky producer constitute another.


46 posted on 03/24/2006 2:16:03 PM PST by Bernard Marx (Fools and fanatics are always certain of themselves, but the wise are full of doubts.)
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To: CharlesWayneCT
You are wrong, because simply writing something doesn't carry a contract that the words were written by the person whose name is on it.

I am correct. Your example of ghost writing is in a completely different category of publishing law. Use of copyrighted works within any document requires citations and credit. Use of large chunks of copyrighted material also requires permission, which must be acknowledged in print.

I have been in publishing for thirty years. I am now a professional writer well versed in publishing law. In my former position as a senior staff editor at Reader's Digest - a magazine that uses formerly published works as its bread and butter - I was responsible for (among many other things) ensuring all quotes were credited, all credits noted and all permissions acquired and paid for.

This writer is guilty of plagiarism, no ifs, ands, or buts.

47 posted on 03/24/2006 2:34:35 PM PST by M. Thatcher
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To: M. Thatcher

Yes, yes, and yes. Too many a student has recieved an F or Incomplete for not following your instructions.


48 posted on 03/24/2006 4:39:26 PM PST by RightWingAtheist ( EveningStar is back; new tagline pending)
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To: M. Thatcher

THese aren't documents, they are newspaper articles, opinion columns, and blog entries. I don't know if there is a distinction there, but this isn't a book he wrote.

If I asked for and got your permission, I could take your answer to me, and post it to my blog as if it was my own work.

I have given people permission to lift paragraphs I have written and put them in their own writing, and usually specifically ask NOT with attribution. Surely you are not telling me that it is illegal for these people to honor my wishes? They are my words, if I want to let someone else use them without saying where they came from, I have every right to do so.

I realise that it is unlikely that these real writers told some guy he could reprint their stuff as their own without attribution. I'm just saying that if they did, he would not be plagerizing to do so.

Maybe i'm missing something here, or maybe I'm hung up on the distinction between breaking the law and simply showing a lack of manners.


49 posted on 03/24/2006 5:03:00 PM PST by CharlesWayneCT
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To: CharlesWayneCT
Maybe i'm missing something here

Yes, you are. You are missing: knowledge, evidence, law, and fact.

50 posted on 03/24/2006 9:09:21 PM PST by M. Thatcher
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