Zakaria: Newsweek Puts A Crack In The Dam

In a shock move with potential ramifications for CNN, Politico’s Dylan Byers writes about Newsweek putting up plagiarism warnings on its old Zakaria articles…

Newsweek has added a plagiarism warning to all of its columns by Fareed Zakaria in the wake of new plagiarism accusations.

“Fareed Zakaria worked for Newsweek when it was under previous ownership. Readers are advised that some of his articles have been the subject of complaints claiming that they contain material that should have been attributed to others,” the note reads. “In addition, readers with information about articles by Mr. Zakaria that may purportedly lack proper attribution are asked to e-mail Newsweek at”

Zakaria, now a CNN host and columnist for The Washington Post, wrote for Newsweek from 1996 to 2010 and also served as editor of Newsweek International from 2000 to 2010. A handful of the articles he wrote for Newsweek have been included in the ongoing plagiarism accusations by Our Bad Media, a site run by two anonymous Twitter users that has dedicated nearly two months to Zakaria’s work.

The note from Newsweek goes far beyond what any of Zakaria’s current employers have done in response to the reports. CNN President Jeff Zucker recently said that he has “complete confidence” in Zakaria, while Post editorial page editor Fred Hiatt has dismissed the plagiarism accusations altogether.

Oh yeah…this could move the goalposts on Zakaria. I was looking for something from Time Magazine and the results of its new investigation. I wasn’t expecting anything from Newsweek.

This is definitely not what CNN wanted to see happen because it puts the focus back on the network and why it still wholeheartedly backs Zakaria when another journalistic organization is now putting up plagiarism warnings on the articles he wrote for them.

You still have time though CNN. A full and forthright accounting at this point, while horribly late, is still a better option than the path you’ve chosen to go down…


5 Responses to “Zakaria: Newsweek Puts A Crack In The Dam”

  1. Amazing. I’ve never heard of any news organization ever doing anything remotely like that.

    If they suspect that the articles may contain plagiarized material, shouldn’t they pull them all? It’s like a grocery store selling meat that may or may not be bad (reaching for an analogy).

    Jim Impoco, who I’ve never heard of before (I’m sure he says the same thing about me), is the current editor-in-chief. You would think Byers would get a statement from him.

  2. I wonder if CNN hasn’t decided that Fareed is their expert, he knows what he’s talking about, and they’re not going to dump him in deference to networks that have Katie Pavlich and Krystal Ball talking about this stuff. Not saying that makes it right, but no one seems to be questioning his base of knowledge. The methods are a whole other thing, of course.

  3. In the land of the people who can’t see, the person with one eye is king.

    There’s your patch writing for ya.

  4. “I wonder if CNN hasn’t decided that Fareed is their expert, he knows what he’s talking about, and they’re not going to dump him”

    ^^You may have a point Lynn. No one seems to want to deal with this. Except for the anonymous bloggers (with an apparent agenda), some reluctant media writers and Spud (who seems exercised over the story) everyone seems to want the story to just go away.

    Even the supposed victims of the alleged plagiarism have been silent. I haven’t seen any outcry from those Zakaria has supposedly plagiarized yet and his employers, past and present, are being very reluctant to act or even comment on the situation. Not even FNC , with a few exceptions and MSNBC have been giving the story much play

    It certainly doesn’t fit the bill for the usual media behavior in this type of story. Outrage by everyone in the media is more the norm and that appears to be missing here. Instead we have caution, disinterest and nervousness.

    There’s a lot more behind these accusations than has being said to date and I think it may have to do with the relationship of Zakaria to the bloggers rather than the charges themselves; which no one seems to want to deal with – in public at least.

  5. savefarris Says:



    Oh wait … sorry … never mind. I forgot that the Tallahassee Democrat has higher standards than CNN. (And for a paper that routinely “covers” Florida State [pun intended], that’s a pretty low bar to begin with.)

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