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Reilly copied a two-year old column?

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by RedHotChiliPrepper, Dec 2, 2009.

  1. I know the last thing we need is another Rick Reilly thread, but I think this brings up some interesting questions.

    Deadspin had a piece today in which someone showed the similarities in his most recent ESPN.com column, and a 2007 SI column. I like Rick Reilly, and I happen to enjoy a lot of what he writes, even if he does mail it in a lot. But stuff like this really bothers me.

  2. tapintoamerica

    tapintoamerica Well-Known Member

    I can't say I blame the editors at ESPN. As a writer, you have to know you're violating the spirit of a core principle when you essentially rewrite the same thing (particularly a timeless topic such as this) for a different outlet. Anybody who has worked for more than one outlet for more than a couple of years apiece has written stories on similar topics for both. I probably stole my own lead a time or two. But this does seem a bit much.
  3. Harry Doyle

    Harry Doyle Member

    This is not new territory for Reilly. Take a look at a couple of other columns:

    From Sports Illustrated, Oct. 26, 1999 (http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/inside_game/magazine/life_of_reilly/news/1999/10/26/life_of_reilly/)
    From ESPN, 2008 (http://sports.espn.go.com/espnmag/story?id=3436089)
    The example Deadspin points out is more egregious, though. How annoying. Can SI sue for plagiarism?
  4. I know the likelihood is that the average reader doesn't even know the two columns are even slightly similar to one another. But with apparently as easy as it is to find old columns and compare them to new columns, I'm just surprised that anyone would even set themselves up for this kind of scrutiny.

    Does Reilly get a pass just because he's Reilly? Or does he get a pass because other than me and a couple other people on this board, nobody gives a rat's ass?
  5. Double J

    Double J Active Member

    The we-need-to-know factor - how many delicious venti mochachinos did Reilly sip at while ripping himself off?
  6. LongTimeListener

    LongTimeListener Well-Known Member

    When Tommy Craggs is arrested for standing outside Rick Reilly's window and masturbating in the dark, the years-long obsession will become known to the world.
  7. Gene Parmesan

    Gene Parmesan Member

    Believe Rick Reilly had a 'Ten Commandments Of Writing' type of a thing. One of them, I recall, was 'never write a sentence you've seen before.'
  8. Bullwinkle

    Bullwinkle Member

    In Reilly's defense, I don't think he's intentionally plagiarizing himself. Rather, I think he has run out of column ideas, and instead of tackling something important, he settles for something more gimmicky.

    Unfortunately, most of these gimmicks have already been done before, by him, and so his opinions haven't changed much over the years. If sports were black and white two years ago, they are probably black and white now, too.
  9. Shaggy

    Shaggy Guest

    I'm not a columnist so forgive me, but does he have to recycle columns when he writes 50 a year?

    I don't see Bill Simmons recycling columns this blatantly.
  10. DanOregon

    DanOregon Well-Known Member

    This thread seems like it has been done before. I guess what surprises me isn't that he reuses formats for his columns like they are MadLibs, but that he can't figure out new stuff to write about.
    His columns come off like an inane late-night monologue.
    "Did you hear about X? X did Y. This is true. It seem that .....PUNCHLINE."
  11. poindexter

    poindexter Well-Known Member

    'Redonkulous' money and he can't find new material.

    Reilly fucking sucks.
  12. nmmetsfan

    nmmetsfan Active Member

    Paychecks cash the same
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