The Michigan Daily is committed to the highest standards of journalistic integrity. We at the Daily strive to earn and maintain your trust as a respected source of news and information for the University community.
Earlier this week, we discovered that a number of articles written by film editor Marshall W. Lee contained plagiarized content. Lee was also recently elected summer managing arts editor.
As soon as we learned that one of his reviews was plagiarized, we began searching his other work. For more information on which articles were plagiarized, see page 7.
This news is quite troubling to us at the Daily, especially because it comes on the heels of similar incidents by a former associate arts editor. Following the discovery of those earlier instances of plagiarism, we promised to write a new ethics code and to hold workshops for our writers. We completed the ethics code, and all members of the Daily’s staff will be required to read and sign it. We have also taken steps to more closely monitor the sources our writers are using for their stories and to provide more guidance for new writers.
The new ethics code is available online on our website, and we will intensify our efforts to train the staff. We are also in the process of developing an even more comprehensive strategy to combat and prevent plagiarism, as this most recent case has shown us that the previous occurrence was not an isolated incident.
We will keep you updated regarding the steps we will be taking in the near future. We owe you, our readers, a serious examination of the Daily’s practices so that you can feel confident relying on the information in the Daily.
Jason Z. Pesick
Editor in Chief
Below is the list of articles that we have found to contain highly questionable content thus far in our investigation:
-“Unoriginal ‘Sin,’ ” a review of the film “Sin City,” that was published on April 4, contains phrases and sentences that are almost identical to portions of a review on the website Flipside Movie Emporium.
-“Fallon, Latifah backfire in mindless ‘Taxi,’ ” a review of the film “Taxi,” plagarizes a review on filmcritic.com. It was published on Oct. 11.
-“To Infinity and Beyond,” a review of the film “I Heart Huckabees,” published on Oct. 25, contains passages that are almost identical to those in a review on the website http://movie-reviews.colossus.net.
-“Existentialism and laughs mix on DVD,” a review published on March 9 of the “I Heart Huckabees” DVD, uses portions of Lee’s original “Huckabees” film review.
-“Tale of two friends highlights ‘Diaries,’ ” a review of the film “The Motorcycle Diaries,” published on October 20, uses phrases from a Rolling Stone review of the same film.
-A piece in the Oscar edition of Weekend Magazine on Feb. 24 uses phrases from a New York Times review to comment on the film “Finding Neverland.” The Weekend piece also takes content from Lee’s original review of “Million Dollar Baby,” “Knock Out,” published on Jan. 31.
-“Brosnan loses a step in ‘After the Sunset,’ ” a review of the film “After the Sunset,” that was published on Nov. 15, borrows passages from a review on the website Kinnopio.com.