The AOL-owned local news site, Patch, announced late Wednesdaythat it had suspended Novak from blogging in its “Local Voices” sectionafter finding what the website editors deemed to be plagiarism in at leasttwo of her seven blog posts.Entire paragraphs of her work appeared to have been lifted almost word forword without attribution from a conservative website and The WashingtonTimes, according to the website editors.
Patch editors posted the excerpts which convinced them something was amiss:
The first complaint was made on Monday (March 12) about a blogpost titled “Proof Your Faith Is Under Attack From Washington” posted onMarch 11. Large portions of Ms. Novak’s post were virtually identical totext in “America’s Most Biblically-Hostile U.S. President” by David Bartonon www.wallbuilders.com but did not include attribution or quotation marks.From Barton’s piece:they have happened in four centuries of American history. The hostility ofPresident Obama toward Biblical faith and values is without equal from anyprevious American president.”From Ms. Novak’s blog:have happened in four centuries of American history. The hostility ofPresident Obama and this Administration toward Biblical faith and values iswithout equal from any previous American president.”
A second more extensive excerpt was taken, without attribution, from theWashington Times. Ms. Novak responded to the controversy, saying in part:
I wish the Patch had printed my response in its entirety. Iwould like to note that I sent more than 1 email, to more than 1 Patchregional editor, asking for clarification on how/when to cite.I received CONFLICTING email responses from Patch editors telling me itwasn’t normally required for what I wrote AND she didn’t want to go alongwith my request to pull the blog down so I could reformat it.I put in the blog itself that I would provide citations. I was not trying toclaim the points. I was very frustrated as Patch provides no means for ablogger to fix even a typo once a blog is posted.
There’s more, including one of the emails Ms. Novak received from Patcheditors at the link.