Tri-State Defender's Pattern of Plagiarism

april 16, 2003  12:56 pm
Last week East Bay Express exposed that the Memphis weekly, which calls itself "The Mid-South's Best Alternative Newspaper," had run a plagiarized story about a police scandal, changing Oakland to Nashville but virtually nothing else. Now Memphis Flyer reveals that the paper has been running stories stolen from New Times and Village Voice Media papers for years under the byline Larry Reeves. The mysterious Reeves can't be found, apparently has been writing for free, may be 80 years old, and no one has ever met him. Reeves' pattern is to cut-and-paste stories from AAN member papers, "localized" with a little search and replace on city names. "You can't get that mad because the whole operation is like amateur night," Cleveland Scene Editor Pete Kotz tells the Flyer. "It's so bad it's amusing."