Thursday, December 04, 2008

The truth shall set you free

Paging William Houston at the Globe & Mail: It is 99.9% certain there is a serial plagiazer in the Canadian media, and it's not clear where the point-one is coming from.

True, there are bigger fish to fry, and sporting topics of broader interest. Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio has done the digging with regard to's Chris Landry, and been on this over the past few days. It's especially rich, especially considering that Landry once wrote a piece about Bill Belichick titled "Above the Law" where he related to readers how, in his days as an NFL scout, he opted for the moral high ground when he worked for Coach Hoodie, saying, "I would not steal (competitors') information. I could beat them fair and square and often did so. I could also look myself in the mirror and sleep well at night, something I could not have done if I had cheated them."

Sportsnet is a distant No. 2 behind TSN, but it is mind-boggling that Houston or the CBC has not called shenanigans. We all look bush-league if this is allowed to slide. Plagiarism is a firing offence at any reputable news outlet. ask Scott Taylor in Winnipeg or David Pratt in Vancouver.

(Update, Dec. 4, 2 p.m.: Pro Football Talk is reporting that Landry will "remain off air for now." Blog picked up on it this morning.)

The Reader's Digest timeline, of PFT's digging, which includes direct accusations from two writers affected, Andrew Brandt and Michael Lombardi, that they were ripped off, seems pretty damning. PFT has dedicated multiple posts to this, so rather than having a post that's nothing but hyperlinks, here's a summary"

  • As "the result of a long-time league executive pointing out the similarities to us," PFT finds that, "In nine different instances, the words in (Landry's Dec. 1) column were virtually identical to the words in the other one (by Lombardi of National Football Post).
  • Quoth PFT, "Landry responded with a general denial and a vague allegation that it was his work that had been plagiarized."
  • On Wednesday, NFP posts a message, "The National Football Post became aware yesterday that Chris Landry copied certain segments of our content and published it on without our permission and without credit being given to our writers. We thank for bringing the issue to our attention."
  • Brandt points out that Lombardi's Nov. 17 column and Landry's Nov. 21 column are remarkably similar. (Apparently Landry once worked for Lombardi in Cleveland.)
  • NFP commenters note that Landry's archive at shows nothing written after Jan. 28, but links to work done since Jan. 28 still work (as, at this writing, it does for the Nov. 21 column -- I checked).
  • PFT says neither Landry or anyone from Rogers Sportsnet has taken them up on an offer to go on the record and tell their side of the story. But they, as Florio notes, it's odd that a portion of his archive would suddenly vanish right after allegations of plagiarism have been levelled.
There is a modicum of sympathy for all the writers these days, and god knows the temptation to scalp or cut corners must be overwhelming. There's far more for those who see someone else nicking their stuff without attribution or permission.

Smoking Gun Emerges In Landry Situation (Pro Football Talk)

That's all for now. Send your thoughts to


Anonymous said...

"nicking their stuff without attribution or permission."

Yes, because we all know that would never happen around here, eh Neate.

Climb down off your high horse, it's unbecoming.


Anonymous said...

Troll alert!

Anonymous said...

It's a blog. They admit that they depend on news stories for stuff to link to, but it's a hobby for them.

Someone getting paid to produce a column for a major media outlet and ripping people off is something different, and I think Neate's merely pointing out the fact that a journalist at a Canadian outlet has been called on it. I also know Neate and know he has pretty high integrity, which is probably why his career never amounted to anything.

Anonymous said...

Chantal, grow up. You're being a troll and nobody likes trolls.

Neate and his bloggers haven't, at least in the years I've been reading it, passed off material written by other people as their own. Given how much Neate seemingly values authenticity and sincerity in sports, don't you think the same logic applies to his writers?

If anything, Neate is considerably above the norm, I think, compared to the vast majority of writers in Canada. He provides links to everything he writes, always attributes to quotes and sources.

Gutless people like yourself who don't even have the balls to log-in and use an account so we can link back to you are a cancer to the Web. Screw you.

Duane Rollins said...

Well there was that time that I tried to claim that I wrote Searching for Bobby Orr but Neate set me straight.

Anonymous said...

My comment was directed to Neate and I don't read anyone else on this blog. He knows why I made the comment.

As for the rest of you, well, pot kettle black.

Anonymous said...

Because you're a mean, jealous, little sneak who can't stand that Neate's had some success? You have a beef with him, his e-mail address is on this site, take it up with him. Comment when you have something constructive to say.

Anonymous said...

Oooh, how witty. And you're telling me to grow up? That's rich.

I'm certainly not jealous of Neate. I enjoy his writing most of the time and he often points me to stories relevant to my interests that I may otherwise not have found.

Until he turns off or moderates comments, I'll comment when and if I feel like commenting.

In the meantime, anonymous, kindly go f*ck yourself.