Plagiarism in our pages
December 27, 2012
When we make a mistake here at the Summit Daily News, we feel it is our responsibility to you, our readers, to own up to it and learn from it.
We are sorry to report that we have made an embarrassing and inexcusable mistake.
On Dec. 23, we published, both online and in our paper, an account of a Dec. 20 Frisco planning commission meeting in which action was taken on a planned development that will feature a Whole Foods Market. It was a big story for our community; as a result, it was the lead headline on the front page. The article had at its start the byline of a Summit Daily News reporter.
However, on Dec. 26, it came to our attention that the same story had first appeared, almost verbatim, in a Dec. 21 posting on the Summit Business Journal website, which is not affiliated with our news organization.
The Summit Business Journal story was written by Tara Flanagan, to whom we owe an apology.
To be clear, the false attribution in our paper was not an accident. It was a deliberate act of plagiarism. It was a case of one person taking credit for the work of another. We do not tolerate such actions and we have taken steps to ensure such behavior is not repeated in the future.
Each person who comes to work in our newsroom must first read and then sign a policy manual that outlines ethical and professional practices. As you would expect, our guidelines explicitly prohibit plagiarism.
In our newsroom, we trust each other to uphold our shared ethics. However, we did not live up to our own standards in this instance, and we pledge to do better moving forward. If you discover any other acts of plagiarism in our paper, do not hesitate to let us know.