EDWARD JAY EPSTEIN: Fareed Zakaria Didn’t Plagiarize! “Zakaria’s crime was not plagiarism. He embarrassed his employer, Time, by not sufficiently juggling the words around or employing the thesaurus to camouflage the sorry fact that instead of going to the ultimate source, the book Gunfight, he (or his assistants) used the electronic clip file. By not changing enough words, he provided the ‘gotcha’ bait for the feeding frenzy of bloggers out for his blood. And for this embarrassment, he had to give an abject apology. But unless Time or CNN provide examples in which he took ideas from others that he did not credit to them, I submit that he is not guilty of plagiarism.”

I haven’t followed this story very closely, but if this analysis is right, I agree. Peter Morgan and I wrote about this in The Appearance of Impropriety: How the Ethics Wars Have Undermined American Government, Business, and Society.