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Author Topic: More on CoinTelegraph from a former writer.  (Read 507 times)
IanDeMartino (OP)
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August 17, 2015, 09:08:13 PM
 #1

Hi all,

I wrote (hopefully) last little bit on CoinTelegraph and what is seriously wrong with that organization.

https://medium.com/@iandemartino/more-on-cointelegraph-by-a-former-writer-b4e1058b37ca

Quote
Having discovered this, I went to the management and informed them that we would have to let Bogdam go. Instead of firing him , they asked me to “teach” him not to plagiarize. Surely, by the time someone is in their mid-twenties and is working for a media organization, he should know not to copy & paste other articles. There are multiple examples of articles by him, still present on CoinTelegraph, that include plagiarism.

After confronting and educating Bogdam, I put extra effort into checking each of his articles. His next article was again plagiarized, this time with the grade-school method of copying an article sentence for sentence but changing a few of the nouns and adjectives around in hopes of throwing off any sleuths. I explained to him again that this is unacceptable and stressed my technique of taking notes from articles and then re-writing from those notes rather than from the articles themselves. Again, I reiterated to CoinTelegraph’s management that he needed to be fired immediately, for the good of CoinTelegraph and for every other writer that works there.

Plagiarism is the most toxic thing you can do in the industry and if you are caught, the blow back doesn’t just get on the writer who wrote the article but it also reflects badly on every writer who writes for a publication that would allow that.

After weeks of arguing with management, they finally fired him. They never admitted to me that the firing was because he was caught plagiarizing. One day he was there and the next, they quietly informed us that he wasn’t writing for us any longer. They never thanked me for preventing an potentially embarrassing situation for the site. Instead, I got the feeling that they were annoyed by my (relative to the editors that came before me) stringent standards.

But not plagiarizing isn’t a stringent standard, it is the lowest possible place you can put the bar, and CoinTelegraph has not raised that bar since. As recently as August 5, CoinTelegraph published an article with plagiarized elements. The original’s author contacted me because according to him, rather than pull the article after he contacted them about it, they offered him a job, at a time when they are having trouble paying their current stable of writers. The plagiarized article remains up. They added a bit about it being “inspired” by a Reddit post, but that is not an acceptable way to deal with plagiarized material.

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Habeler876
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August 17, 2015, 09:29:42 PM
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Cointelegraph wasn't always like this, if my memory serves me correctly. They had some nice and fresh articles, and i never thought that they would
stoop so low to hire and keep such a writer.
Crypto news are more or less the same everywhere, due to low volume of relevant news, but straight on copy pasting is just plain wrong.

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August 17, 2015, 11:51:45 PM
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It is sad, but plagiarizing is rewarding nowadays. Some people are good on rewording/ paraphrasing and their articles go as original material.

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August 18, 2015, 09:30:56 AM
Last edit: August 18, 2015, 09:53:02 AM by pedrog
 #4

Hey, at least he wasn't making stuff up, that would be quite a story. Smiley

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August 18, 2015, 09:58:38 AM
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Pretty much all of these bitcoin news sites copy articles from everyone else, though most of the time its people copying from cointelegraph. I think any so called 'journalist' should be fired for plagiarism though. One warning was more than enough and if it was a more serious site they would have fired them immediately though maybe he was just niave but like you said it can seriously damage the sites rep.
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August 18, 2015, 12:43:34 PM
 #6

Hi all,

I wrote (hopefully) last little bit on CoinTelegraph and what is seriously wrong with that organization.

https://medium.com/@iandemartino/more-on-cointelegraph-by-a-former-writer-b4e1058b37ca

Quote
Having discovered this, I went to the management and informed them that we would have to let Bogdam go. Instead of firing him , they asked me to “teach” him not to plagiarize. Surely, by the time someone is in their mid-twenties and is working for a media organization, he should know not to copy & paste other articles. There are multiple examples of articles by him, still present on CoinTelegraph, that include plagiarism.

After confronting and educating Bogdam, I put extra effort into checking each of his articles. His next article was again plagiarized, this time with the grade-school method of copying an article sentence for sentence but changing a few of the nouns and adjectives around in hopes of throwing off any sleuths. I explained to him again that this is unacceptable and stressed my technique of taking notes from articles and then re-writing from those notes rather than from the articles themselves. Again, I reiterated to CoinTelegraph’s management that he needed to be fired immediately, for the good of CoinTelegraph and for every other writer that works there.

Plagiarism is the most toxic thing you can do in the industry and if you are caught, the blow back doesn’t just get on the writer who wrote the article but it also reflects badly on every writer who writes for a publication that would allow that.

After weeks of arguing with management, they finally fired him. They never admitted to me that the firing was because he was caught plagiarizing. One day he was there and the next, they quietly informed us that he wasn’t writing for us any longer. They never thanked me for preventing an potentially embarrassing situation for the site. Instead, I got the feeling that they were annoyed by my (relative to the editors that came before me) stringent standards.

But not plagiarizing isn’t a stringent standard, it is the lowest possible place you can put the bar, and CoinTelegraph has not raised that bar since. As recently as August 5, CoinTelegraph published an article with plagiarized elements. The original’s author contacted me because according to him, rather than pull the article after he contacted them about it, they offered him a job, at a time when they are having trouble paying their current stable of writers. The plagiarized article remains up. They added a bit about it being “inspired” by a Reddit post, but that is not an acceptable way to deal with plagiarized material.

Interesting article, I would't thought that the Cointelegraph management is like this. Embracing plagiarism is not professional and shouldn't be accepted by such a huge news site like coin telegraph.
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August 18, 2015, 01:03:25 PM
 #7


Thanks for releasing this insight on how "professional" bitcoin media works. (I heard similar stories about CoinDesk, where you can easily purchase lead articles.) It's quite sobering in general, and weird in particular with the ongoing ByteCoin scam/pump. By accident, they seem to have created something much more worthwhile than the altcoins the tried to get rich with. Cheesy

OP, thanks and the best of luck for your new endeavor!
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