After the Boston Globe emerged in the late 1990s from its travails over ethically challenged columnists Mike Barnicle and Patricia Smith, the editors began taking a number of steps to restore the paper’s credibility. One was the disclaimer placed at the bottom of the Sunday sports “notes” columns: “[M]aterial from personal interviews, wire services, other beat writers, and league and team sources was used in this report.”
Now it looks like that disclaimer is going to be put to the test. A Web site called Cold, Hard Football Facts charges that Globe football writer Ron Borges “apparently stole great stretches of his column from a previously published report” in the Tacoma News Tribune. Well, it depends on the meaning of “stole,” doesn’t it? The site acknowledges the disclaimer, but then adds that “even a 90-pound weakling of a newspaper copy boy has enough sense to change some of the words.”
The Phoenix’s Adam Reilly has all the details and promises to post responses from Borges and Globe editor Marty Baron as soon as he gets them.