Harvard Plagiarism Archive

"[T]he problem of writers . . . passing off the work of others as their own . . . [is] a phenomenon of some significance."
PROFESSOR LAURENCE TRIBE, e-mail to Dean Lawrence Velvel, 9/13/2004

"'I . . . delegated too much responsibility to others . . .,' [Prof. Charles Ogletree] said. 'I was negligent
in not overseeing more carefully the final product that carries my name.' * * * Ogletree told The Crimson that
he had not read the passage of Balkin’s book that appears in his own work. An assistant inserted the material
into a manuscript . . . . But Ogletree said he was closely involved in most of the drafting of the book . . . ."

STEVEN MARKS, "Ogletree Faces Discipline for Copying Text," The Harvard Crimson, 9/13/2004

"'Ronald Klain . . . then only a first-year student at Harvard law . . . spent most of his time with
Tribe working on Tribe's [1985] book God Save This Honorable Court,'" the Legal Times added in 1993.
* * * 'Many of Klain's friends and former colleagues say that he wrote large sections of the book . . . .'"

JOSEPH BOTTUM, "The Big Mahatma," The Weekly Standard, 10/4/2004

"[A]fter several plagiarism scandals broke over distinguished faculty members at Harvard's law school, including
Laurence Tribe,a group of students there set up a blog, Harvard Plagiarism Archive, to follow the University's
handling of the problem. They believe that the University, President Summers, and Dean Elena Kagan
essentially white-washed the scandal and are demanding further action.

PROF. RALPH LUKER, History News Network's "Cliopatria" blog,4/26/2005

“The Tribe and Ogletree matters have catalyzed bitter complaints from Harvard students that the university
employs a double standard. . . . The students have every right to be incensed over this gross double standard.
They in fact ought to raise hell peacefully about it: a constant barrage of letters, emails, statements . . . .”

DEAN LAWRENCE VELVEL, "Velvel on National Affairs" blog, 4/28/2005

"If you want to keep track of this story, I recommend the new Harvard Plagiarism Archive. . . . [I]t's pretty thorough."
TIMOTHY NOAH, Slate's "Chatterbox" blog,9/28/2004

"[Y]ou have done a wonderful service to all by operating the AuthorSkeptics website . . . a fine public service."
DEAN LAWRENCE VELVEL, author of "Velvel on National Affairs," e-mail to AuthorSkeptics, 4/19/2005

Saturday, September 25, 2004

Introduction. Read me first!

About two weeks ago, after the story about plagiarism by Harvard Law School professor Charles Ogletree broke, we began e-mailing various journalists, bloggers, and professors to encourage interest in the general problem of plagiarism by Harvard scholars, and particularly the double standard that is being applied by the Harvard administration, with scholars investigated and disciplined much more leniently than are students. Our intent is to stick as closely as possible to the existing reported facts, and summaries of news coverage, rather than to try to report new facts. We thereby hope to provide a useful resource for those interested in these issues, and particularly for those interested in improving how these issues are addressed at Harvard and other universities.

To cut down on the e-mail load, we have finally learned how to operate a blog. In the next several posts we set forth various materials from our e-mails sent out during the past two weeks.

Until today, we were sending out our e-mails using the e-mail address OgletreeSkeptics@yahoo.com. As you will see from our most recent e-mail of September 25 (posted above, as the last of this introductory series, see here: http://authorskeptics.blogspot.com/2004/09/professor-laurence-tribe.html), a thoughtful post from a Harvard Law School student led us to change our name to depersonalize it, and remove any suggestion we are focusing more on Professor Ogletree than on the general problem of how scholarly misconduct by Harvard scholars is handled. We are now using the e-mail address AuthorSkeptics@hotmail.com, are using "AuthorSkeptics" as our name, and are using "HARVARD PLAGIARISM ARCHIVE" as the name of our blog, as its main purpose is to archive summaries of coverage of the Harvard plagiarism stories.

We welcome any and all comments and suggestions for improvements. If you e-mail us, unless you specify otherwise, we will assume we may reprint anything you say, but without using your name. We will not identify you by name unless you specifically authorize us to do so. You are welcome to contact us via anonymous e-mail if you wish.

We encourage any tips anyone may wish to offer regarding possible scholarly misconduct by professors at Harvard or elsewhere. Although we do not have the capacity to investigate such tips ourselves, we will do our best to forward tips to reputable journalists who may have an interest in such stories.


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