Monday, 23 August 2010

Mail caught out (again) copying year -old story from BBC

Yesterday afternoon, this article appeared on the Daily Mail website:

It was odd timing because this actually happened in May 2009. So why was the Mail running it now?

Martin Robbins explains:

On May 21st 2009, an article was posted on the BBC about an attack on the file-sharing site Youtube...

For some reason, this old article became one of the “Most Read” items on the BBC website [yesterday]...

Then, in a bizarre coincidence blatant piece of plagiarism, the Daily Mail ran the exact same story (mirror) from May 2009, lifting text and quotes straight from the BBC article.

He then shows how closely 'Daily Mail Reporter' copied-and-pasted the BBC article, making only the most basic attempts at changing a few words here and there.

Martin adds:

The Daily Mail waste no opportunity to take a dig at the BBC, and yet apparently they find their content good enough to repost at, even when it’s more than a year out of date (H/T to @jaffathecake)...

Almost inevitably, the Mail article now seems to have been taken down, with no question of acknowledging the ‘mistake’...

What I do find disgusting is that an organ that constantly harps on about the integrity of others – including notably the BBC – doesn’t have the honesty or decency to own up to the fact that this even happened. Instead, its editors prefer to rewrite history in the hope that noone will ever notice.

Moreover, it's not the first time the Mail has been caught out in this way. A BBC article from October 2008 about Welsh road signs suddenly appeared on the Mail website in March this year after making the BBC's 'Most read' list.

In July, Mail editor Paul Dacre said:

Britain's newspapers are infinitely better behaved than they were two decades ago. Yes, the industry can do more to improve standards. We will rise to our challenge.


(Hat-tips to Lindsay and Graeme for emailing about the Mail's YouTube article, and for the screenshot)


  1. I'm sure that story re-appears on the BBC's most read list regularly due to the fact it has the word "porn" in the title.

  2. My local paper has recently caught them out using a three year old story..

  3. Fun times:

    Nominate really old link bait story on the BBC.

    Loads of people hit it to push it to the top of the "most read" section.

    Wait for the Daily Mail to write it up as a new story.



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