Vice Media’s i-D website unpublished its posted article, “Lauren Bacall could teach you a thing or two about style” for the simple reason that it had been plagiarized from New York magazine.
Jack Borkett, the writer who filed the article for i-D, a purported fashion website, has also been fired.
The article on Lauren Bacall, who died this week, was a copy and paste job of the headline and most of the first paragraph from New York magazine, Politico reported.
i-D ended up publishing a statement on its website about the incident.
“A previous post on Lauren Bacall had too many similarities to a recent post by New York magazine’s The Cut, so it has been removed. i-D takes great pride in its original content, and thanks those who pointed out the similarities.”
The short Aug. 13 i-D article by Borkett read (iMediaEthics bolded verbatim content ripped off from NY Mag):
“Lauren Bacall Could Teach You A Thing Or Two About Style
“When Lauren Bacall walked into a room – shirt open , sunglasses covering most of her face – men stopped and fell to their knees. Then she spoke. Her deep, confident voice, insouciant gaze and perfectly moulded waves epitomised her as the embodiment of effortless glamour. Aside from her obvious achievements in cinema and modelling, it’s her hair that’ll hold a firm place in fashion folklore forever. Take a look at some i-D favourites that have taken inspiration from that famous femme fatale”
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New York magazine told iMediaEthics by e-mail it didn’t have any comment on the incident.
iMediaEthics has written to Vice and i-D for comment. We’ve also reached out to the writer of the article, Jack Borkett, for comment.
Vice Media, which owns i-D, is an online content company.
UPDATE: 8/14/2014 5:47 PM EST Akua Enninful, Borkett’s agent, sent iMediaEthics the following statement on Borkett’s behalf
“First and formost Jack is a stylist, not a writer. He was trained for 7 years to become the stylist that he is now, and a very talented one at that. As part of his training he was taught as any good stylist would have been to put together a concept drawn from inspiration from different area’s of the industry. This was the attitude he adopted with his article. Jack has no formal training in writing or as a journalist, which means that he did not know the correct way in which to structure an article or reference his quotes, he had one hour to construct something that would be posted up in order for ID to be seen as a magazine which kept up to date with current affairs.
“Had Jack been an established writer and a trained journalist, yes he would have known to put a source reference next to the area’s of his article where someone’s work had been quoted. Jack was made to do a job he was not qualified to do by a magazine as big as i-D which is owned by such a huge media giant like Vice who should have known better. The fact that articles for ID are written by people such as interns, fashion assistants and fashion editor’s and not real writers or journalist who know the do’s and dont’s means that such an incident was inevitable.
“In my experience every establish fashion magazine has a feature’s editor/Editor who makes sure that all written content being published follows the rules and guidelines of the publication to ensure that such incidents are avoided. Yes in hindsight Jack now knows that was not the correct way to write such an article and he has paid dearly for just doing a job which was over and above his call of duty. Jack feels he has now been made a scape goat by i-D for something that could have been avoided had the company paid for trained writers or journalist to write their articles for them.”