Almost two weeks after a new wave of plagiarism charges, CNN’s Brian Stelter offered an extensive defense of fellow host Fareed Zakaria Sunday morning.
Stelter, the host of CNN’s “Reliable Sources,” said in his concluding monologue the latest charges brought forth by Our Bad Media against the host of “Fareed Zakaria GPS” host is part of a “campaign against Zakaria,” with Stelter also noting he disagrees with the bloggers and “still trust(s) him” after reviewing the allegations.
The group released a report claiming to have found 26 more episodes of “Fareed Zakaria GPS” that featured content that was “lifted without proper attribution.” This follows a string of plagiarism charges the host has incurred over the past two years, which previously resulted in a two week suspension from the network.
Stelter cited many possible excuses for the world affairs writer, including:
- The possibility that his producers actually write his content.
- It wasn’t capital “P” plagiarism.
- The cited instances were mere “misdemeanors” as far as plagiarism is concerned.
- And lastly, that it’s now seemingly okay for reporters and and TV personnel to “run” with each other’s “ideas.”
CNN’s PR department offered a brief comment on the embattled host.
“CNN has the highest confidence in the excellence and integrity of Fareed Zakaria’s work,” read the statement. “We have found nothing that gives us cause for concern.”
Zakaria, who the report claims to have found 26 instances of plagiarism, declined comment to Stelter.
“I believe the perception, in this case, is worse than the reality, but I understand why there have been raised eyebrows,” Stelter said.
The most damning example the report cites is an introduction to an obscure Dutch documentary on the imprisonment and death of Sergei Magnitsky, a Russian whistle-blower, which Zakaria allegedly copied (almost verbatim) into a segment on the story for “GPS.”
Could the resemblance be any more uncanny? See for yourself: