Wednesday, June 20, 2012

So THAT'S how Creativity Works!

It is no secret that I am no great fan of Jonah Lehrer. The fact is that I continue to be depressed that what he does counts for science writing these days. Therefore, I found it hard to suppress tinges of Schadenfreeude when I came across the following introductory paragraphs to a post to the ArtsBeat blog of The New York Times:
The science writer Jonah Lehrer, author of the runaway bestseller Jim Romenesko noted that a June 12 post on The Frontal Cortex, Mr. Lehrer’s blog for The New Yorker, titled “Why Smart People Are Stupid,” included material recycled from a post he had written last October for The Wall Street Journal. 
Within a few hours, New York magazine’s Daily Intel and other blogs had tracked down a number of other instances of self-duplication from Mr. Lehrer’s writing for Wired, the New York Times Magazine, and other publications. 
By late afternoon, The New Yorker had appended an editor’s note to all five posts Mr. Lehrer has written since he began blogging for the magazine on June 5, noting the borrowings and saying “We regret duplication of material.”
It's no secret that appropriation (including self-appropriation) is fundamental to artistic creativity. Journalism, on the other hand, is not art! At least when I self-appropriate, I try to identify my sources with hyperlinks!

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