Some Johann Hari quotes that take on a whole new meaning in light of today’s events:

“Nick Davies is right in Flat Earth News. (There is) lots of recycling of extreme superficiality (in the media)”

“Teachers are supposed to be the front-line guarding against plagiarism and cheating, but – in obeisance to the great god of League Tables – they are often acting as its cheerleaders.”

“Mr Bombastic, a regular poster on the Medialens chatboard, e-mailed my questions to Chomsky. He summarises the Professor’s reply: ‘[He] says that he has nothing to do with the website Hari refers to. He also says that friends in England send him some of Hari’s articles, and he’s noticed unsourced material there that Hari probably lifted from the aforementioned website, “since it’s highly unlikely that he (Hari) could have discovered it on his own.”’ Ah, innuendo—presumably about plagiarism—one of Chomsky’s preferred techniques. I challenge him to provide a single sliver of evidence for this extremely serious accusation, or to retract it and apologise. “

“I am constantly learning from the links you send, the news stories and life experiences you tell me about, and – perhaps most of all – the critical emails where you write to tell me where I’ve gone wrong, lost the plot, or generally screwed up. The best gift any journalist can have is a big, disputatious, noisy readership that talks back – and I’ve got it in you.”

“I was on Women’s Hour this morning talking about being wrong and why I think we need to own up to it more often.”

Every columnist likes to imagine they’re a lone gunslinger, but in reality every column is a collaboration with a circle of people who deserve a huge amount of the credit.” 

As good as some bloggers are, they don’t have the army of foreign correspondents or in-depth investigative teams that are necessary to make sense of the world. If print newspapers – for all their manifest flaws and corporate biases – die, there will be an aching hole where newsgathering used to be.”

“(My mother) hates to see people being talked down to or patronised or treated like they are worth nothing, and she hates anyone who thinks they are better than ‘ordinary’ people. It enrages her…So I guess the ultimate lesson she taught me was to never be deferential, and to never be superior. “

And today has thrown up this old column from Private Eye, which accused him of making things up way back in 2003: http://student.cs.ucc.ie/cs1064/jabowen/IPSC/articles/article0003736.html


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