By: E&P Staff
Well, Ann Coulter may be “liberal” in one respect, anyway. The New York Post reported Sunday that author/columnist Coulter “cribbed liberally in her latest book” and also in several of her syndicated columns, according to a plagiarism expert.
John Barrie, creator of the iThenticate plagiarism-probing system, claimed he found at least three examples of what he called “textbook plagiarism” in the new Coulter book “Godless” after he ran its text through the program.
He also discovered verbatim copying in Coulter’s weekly column, which is syndicated to more than 100 newspapers by Universal.
The headline in classic Post fashion: COPYCATTY COULTER PILFERS PROSE: PRO
Bloggers had been citing examples of alleged Coulter cribbing for months.
After detailing some of the alleged plagiarism in the book, the Post article related that Barrie also ran Coulter’s columns from the past year through iThenticate “and found similar patterns of cribbing.
“Her Aug. 3, 2005, column, ‘Read My Lips: No New Liberals,’ about U.S. Supreme Court Justice David Souter, includes six passages, ranging from 10 to 48 words each, that appeared 15 years earlier in the same order in an L.A. Times article, headlined ‘Liberals Leery as New Clues Surface on Souter’s Views.’ But nowhere in that column does she mention the L.A. Times or the story’s writer, David G. Savage.
“Her June 29, 2005, column, ‘Thou Shalt Not Commit Religion,’ incorporates 10 facts on National Endowment for the Arts-funded work that originally appeared in the same order in a 1991 Heritage Foundation report, ‘The National Endowment for the Arts: Misusing Taxpayers’ Money.’ But again, the Heritage Foundation isn’t credited.”
Barrie said, “Just as Coulter plays free and loose with her citations in ‘Godless,’ she obviously does the same in her columns.”
Meanwhile, many of the 344 citations Coulter includes in “Godless” “are very misleading,” said Barrie, who holds a Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley, where he specialized in pattern recognition.
“They’re used purely to try and give the book a higher level of credibility – as if it’s an academic work. But her sloppiness in failing to properly attribute many other passages strips it of nearly all its academic merits,” he told The Post.
Coulter did not respond to requests for comment.