The AAEC has released a statement on plagiarism and originality in cartoning. It reads in part:
Over the years, there have been rare instances where an editorial cartoonist passes
off someone else’s work as their own. This practice diminishes the cartoonist,
their body of work and damages the profession of editorial cartooning.
Passing someone else’s work off as your own is not tolerated in written reporting, and it should not be tolerated in political cartooning. Indeed, it is not tolerated within the membership of our association. Further, reselling old cartoons with only a few labels changed is just plain bad for both the art form and for business.
I am only coming to the Manti Te’o dead girlfriend story by way of Deadspin’s revelation that it was all a farce, and wow, what a farce. How did the media, sports world, and Notre Dame fall for something that seems, on its face, like complete bullshit? Even if she were real, the connection between the two was clearly played up for effect by an adoring media and fan base. She didn’t really fit the definition of “girlfriend” by any standard I’ve ever seen used. If she were real, using her death to glorify a football player she never met seemed problematic and callous on its own. Te’o maintains he was duped by the whole thing. My guess his he’ll be apologizing on Oprah as soon as Lance is finished.
What I find most interesting (by which I mean disgusting) is Notre Dame’s reaction of shock and disgust at such a “sad and cruel” hoax perpetuated against their shiny star. Yet when a 19-year-old woman, Elizabeth Seeberg, killed herself after accusing a football player of sexual assault, they wouldn’t even publicly acknowledge her story for over two months. Notre Dame eventually got around to questioning the player in question and determined behind close doors that no wrong had taken place. Game on!