Let it not be said that we here at Smart Bitches don’t address the idea that using someone else’s words without attribution is a big, funk-stanky, bad, bad, bad idea. I know we don’t talk about unattributed usage much at all here, but if you’re interested: if one is a newspaper sex columnist, and one uses someone else’s writing under one’s own byline, it’s not what Martha Stewart would call a “good thing.”
Jezebel has revealed that New York Press sex advice columnist Claudia Lonow used questions from a 2006 Dan Savage sex column in her debut column.
From the Poynter Forums:
It has come to our attention that some of the questions in this week’s debut of the New York Press’s new sex-advice column, “Lip Service,” were taken from past columns by Dan Savage, the nationally-syndicated sex-advice columnist and editor of The Stranger. The author of the column, Claudia Lonow, a television writer based in Los Angeles who had not previously written for a newspaper, used the questions to provide material for her inaugural column, in the absence of real questions from readers. It had been our understanding that the questions for her first column came from friends. She has told us she was unaware that using questions from Savage’s column was a breach of journalism ethics. She has offered her resignation, and we’ve accepted it. We apologize to our readers, and to Dan Savage, for this error in judgment.
Wow. A breach of ethics.
Thanks to Jessica D for the link.