Fareed Zakaria. (Photo by Jason Kempin/Getty Images)
By Michael Winter, USA TODAY
Time Magazine and CNN have suspended Fareed Zakaria for plagiarizing a portion of a column on gun control. He had apologized earlier Friday.
Zakaria's column, The Case for Gun Control, appears in the current issue of Time, dated Aug. 20. He borrowed several paragraphs from an April 23 New Yorker article on the National Rifle Association by Jill Lepore.
He issued this apology this afternoon on the CNN blog for his weekly foreign-affair show, Fareed Zakaria GPS (Global Public Square):
"Media reporters have pointed out that paragraphs in my Time column this week bear close similarities to paragraphs in Jill Lepore's essay in the April 23rd issue of The New Yorker. They are right. I made a terrible mistake. It is a serious lapse and one that is entirely my fault. I apologize unreservedly to her, to my editors at Time, and to my readers."
Here's what Time Senior Vice President of Communication Ali Zelenko said later about Zakaria, a contributing editor:
"Time accepts Fareed's apology, but what he did violates our own standards for our columnists, which is that their work must not only be factual but original; their views must not only be their own but their words as well. As a result, we are suspending Fareed's column for a month, pending further review."
CNN then followed with this statement:
"We have reviewed Fareed Zakaria's Time column, for which he has apologized. He wrote a shorter blog post on CNN.com on the same issue which included similar unattributed excerpts. That blog post has been removed and CNN has suspended Fareed Zakaria while this matter is under review."
Time and CNN are owned by Time Warner.
The Atlantic's Alexander Abad-Santos tracked the controversy, pointed out the offending paragraphs and recovered the CNN blog post through Google cache.