Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Russian State TV Journalist Plagiarizes Nationalist Website

A reporter for Russia’s leading television channel admitted lifting huge chunks of a nationalist report about the Sochi Olympics’ opening ceremony for use in her own report, which aired over the weekend. Irada Zeinalova said she quoted a report by Kremlin-bashing web resource Sputnik & Pogrom without attribution for a broadcast on Channel One. The report “found such true and subtle words about the Olympics that you could wish for nothing better,” Zeinalova said in a Facebook post that later was deleted. She apologized for unattributed quoting and said she “faced the music” with channel management, which has not commented publicly about the scandal. Sputnik & Pogrom’s report, published Saturday, praised the ceremony for a pro-Western slant and avoidance of rampant conservatism that is at the core of the Kremlin’s current domestic policy. Both the website and the presenter touted the event, in particular, for presenting “aristocratic Russians” to the world, as opposed to kitschy stereotypes about balalaikas and “aggressive drunken soldiers.” Sputnik & Pogrom directly accused Channel One of plagiarism on Monday, but said no legal action was planned because the channel de-facto helped spread their ideas.


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