Jonah Lehrer’s tight spot

Jonah Lehrer - Pop!Tech 2009 - Camden, ME

‘This week, …Jonah Lehrer of the New Yorker …has found himself in a tight spot. On Tuesday morning, the media reporter Jim Romenesko pointed out that the opening paragraphs of Lehrer’s mid-June post to his New Yorker blog, Frontal Cortex, had previously made an appearance in an October Op-Ed Lehrer wrote for the Wall Street Journal. By midday, a reporter at New York magazine’s Daily Intel blog spotted a few more double-dips — anecdotes and examples reused in different stories — and everyone was off to the races. The New Yorker added unhappy-sounding caveats to most of Lehrer’s posts (“We regret the duplication of material”). A freelancer began cataloging, on his Tumblr, passages from Lehrer’s old New York Times Magazine pieces that later resurfaced in Lehrer’s posts at Wired. By Wednesday morning, the literary blogger Ed Champion had compiled an incredibly long list of repurposed material in Lehrer’s books and articles, and he was only a couple hundred pages into the book. Late yesterday, Lehrer finally commented, to the New York Times, that “It was a stupid thing to do and incredibly lazy and absolutely wrong.” But so far, he still has a job at the New Yorker.’ ( Salon).