According to Gawker, BuzzFeed’s viral politics editor Benny Johnson was caught plagiarizing material three different times. To make matters worse, Johnson copied material from Yahoo! Answers of all places.
You would think this would warrant some type of disciplinary action, but nope! This is BuzzFeed. When your site is known for churning out shit content, it doesn’t really matter if some of it was stolen.
In an email to Gawker, Ben Smith — BuzzFeed’s editor — shrugged his shoulders at the incidents:
We’re grateful to @blippoblappo and @crushingbort for pointing out these serious failures to properly attribute two quotations and to credit a source in a third post. We’ve corrected the posts.
Benny Johnson is one of the web’s deeply original writers, as is clear from his body of work.
Let it be known that if you’re a BuzzFeed writer, you can get caught lifting content from other sources three separate times and it’s all good. Four times? Well, you might get a dirty look. Five times and Smith will be forced to describe you as “naughty.” Each time you plagiarize after that you get promoted.
Update (10:23 am):
There are now six more accusations of plagiarism against Johnson.
Update (7/26, 9:03 am):
BuzzFeed has fired Johnson.