Political plagiarism exposes the need for original content . . . Vol 2

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Several years ago I blogged about would-be Republican congressman Vaughn Ward, who got caught plagiarising a speech originally given by President Barack Obama.

Seems the Republicans just can’t get enough of that Obama oratory…

Only this time it was Mrs. Trump in the hot seat for “borrowing” from First Lady Michelle Obama.

A writer who works for the Trumps, Meredith McIver, has taken blame for the error, saying the lifted phrases were supposed to be examples only. Even Donald Trump chalked it up to an “innocent mistake.”

That’s a pretty damning mistake on the biggest stage of Mrs. Trump’s life. I’ve got to say, Ms. McIver is one lucky lady not to have heard the words “you’re fired.”

Of course, even before Ms. McIver came out with her statement, I had a pretty good idea of how this went down. That’s because being a writer, myself, I use reference material all the time. Sometimes I’ll pull entire paragraphs into the very document I’m working on. But when I’m drafting a piece, I always know which words I wrote and which ones I didn’t.

Sadly, plagiarism and ripping off other people’s ideas happens all the time. Especially on the Web. Text and images are lifted and reused with no attribution or credit given to the creator. But this is no way to build a corporate, personal, or political brand.
What people want these days is authenticity. And authenticity is synonymous with originality. I don’t condemn Mrs. Trump. But I will hold her up as a cautionary tale of what not to do.

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