protecting a plagiarist

25 April 2011

when mainstream media can and do ignore the scandalous plagiarism of a krip yuson, when he continues to write a column for the arts and culture section of philippine star, if he continues to write for rogue magazine, when he continues to shepherd aspiring writers in the dumaguete writing workshop, if he continues to teach creative writing in the ateneo, if he continues to be a presence in the palanca awards night, what does it say of our mainstream media, our academic institutions, and our literary culture?

at least in social media he has been exposed and excoriated, as he deserves to be, and gmanews online has fired him as editor-at-large.   i am sure it helped that no less than the center for media freedom and responsibility — executive director, melinda quintos de jesus; deputy director, luis teodoro; directors jose abueva, fr. joaquin bernas, fulgencio factoran, maribel ongpin, paulynn paredes-sicam, and vergel santos — jeered at yuson from its website for attempting to legitimize plagiarism.

so again i ask, what does it say of our mainstream media, our academic institutions, and our literary culture when a krip yuson is allowed to go on as if nothing happened?   as if plagiarism by a much-admired writer is forgivable.   microcosm of the macrocosm?   if danding cojuangco can get away with the coconut levy funds, if the marcoses can get away with plunder and human rights violations, if jocjoc bolante can get away with a fertilizer scam, if gma can get away with hello-garci and extrajudicial killings, if the aquinos can get away with hacienda luisita, if the supreme court can get away with partisanship and plagiarism, if the bishops can get away with lying about sex and reproduction, if angelo reyes can get away with suicide, why not krip yuson with plagiarism?

mainstream media and academics and the righteous showbiz burgis were so quick to jump on willie revillame for the janjan episode.   this renders their silence on krip yuson’s plagiarism and arrogance both deafening and shocking.   more so when one asks why kaya the silence, and the only answer seems to be that they are protecting their own kind, condoning their own sins, tell me if i’m wrong.   wonder no more what’s happening to our country.   they are all complicit in this damaged culture.

in the spirit of disclosure: krip and i were friends until we had a falling out over a personal matter many years ago.   i’ve since kept out of his way as he has kept out of mine.   so, if we were still friends, would i be saying all these in public?   given the way he has handled it, YES, and i would not have hesitated to scream at him to his face, or over the phone, for being so stupid as to think he was big enough to get away with it.   not in my book.   friend or no friend.

14 Responses to protecting a plagiarist

  1. April 26, 2011 at 12:59 am
    BrianB

    Btw, the male tiempo’s novel was heavily edited before publication in the US. Does that mean he is only author of half of it?

    Honestly, Krip et.al have nothing except for the misguided admiration of young writers, you included. They’ve been living in a bubble of their own making where they can fantasize themselves true literary types.

    I am appalled at the time Ateneo is taking to fire Yuson, and it will come. Unless insanity takes over and that school’s younger members will suffer for this man’s stupidity. It’s not merely the ethics of it but the reputation.

    This means something to me, I’m sure it is obvious to you. A lot of my suspicions – beliefs have been brought to light. You admire them; I just think they are stupid, like parents who have brainwashed their children to think they are respectful, honorable.

    To be truly worthy of respect you have to withstand one test after another – tests that people like Yuson, through snobbery and native angas have avoided throughout their careers. It’s ironic that literature, often the cultural vanguard, the challengers of mores and destroyers of cultural fabric, in this country is simply a quill-wielding version of land-owning conservatism.

  2. April 26, 2011 at 5:06 am
    GabbyD

    what kind of punishment do you envision? and why? it seems firing yuson from all his professional entanglements to be extreme?

  3. April 26, 2011 at 8:33 am
    baycas

    blog watch to child abuse is stuart santiago to plagiarism.

  4. April 26, 2011 at 8:40 am
    baycas

    how about the MSM condemnation of the rogas-tulfo caper? did it happen?

  5. April 26, 2011 at 12:59 pm

    gabbyd: at the very least, on his own, to show remorse and shame, he should have taken a leave from all his “professional entanglements” kahit sandali. no dumaguete no palanca appearances for at least this year, no column writing for at least two, three months. and if he isn’t man enough to do it on his own, well then his betters, elders, bosses, should impose it on him.

  6. April 26, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    ps. and from teaching “creative writing” maybe forever, no? what message does it send to students that their teacher is a confirmed plagiarist?

  7. April 26, 2011 at 3:14 pm

    Hi Angela, Kung makakalusot, ipapalusot. Same goes for Trump, Palin, or Gore. Krip is perhaps small potatoes or fries, and hold the Coke..

  8. April 26, 2011 at 4:03 pm
    Brian

    I’ll bet a million dollars Yuson will be on permanent leave from Ateneo next semester. Angela, the psychology involved here (including the guilt-ridden silence) is something for social scientists and intellectuals to study. It’s a small tell that reveals the entire soul.

    It’s not about remorse either. The intent to steal was clear to me. It’s a very strange case. Is it possible Yuson has a ghost writer? Maybe someone really young that does the more prosaic writing… a daughter, perhaps?

    Seems that we’re missing MLQ3, who was capable more than anyone of making a big deal out of a little thing when it’s right to do so. Can you tweet him?

  9. April 26, 2011 at 7:21 pm
    Nonilon Queano

    The least that mainstream media can do is expose the plagiarist. At UP, students are always reminded and warned against plagiarism or copying somebody else’s work without proper acknowledgment. They are sure to fail in my class if they are… found out. I know, there have been cases of Ph.D. degrees withdrawn after the graduate has been discovered to have plagiarized. Plagiarism is as bad a crime as any and the offender should be punished– put to jail or sent to the gallows (of public shame, hehe)– probably more so if he is famous or is the Mafia boss of Literature and the media. Is there a media agency that can investigate this case?

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