Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Daily Times: Cheaters And Plagiarizers

So I posted a story from the Daily Times earlier today for its fairly strange and incomprehensible headline, "Pakistan a ticking time bomb or does it just have any problem?" At first I thought it was funny, which is why I posted it. AKS, however, has alerted us to the fact that the article has been directly lifted from a Forbes magazine story. What's worse is that they've done a terrible job of it, making the headline and some of the story slightly nonsensical. Here's the Daily Times story (dated January 29th) in full:

Pakistan a ticking bomb or does it just have any problem?

Daily Times Monitor

Western investors that have poured billions into Pakistan must be wondering: Is the country a ticking bomb or does it just have any problem.

Pakistan is not only a foreign policy imbroglio for the US, particularly, but also a potential investment agony for Americans if the tumult following Benazir Bhutto’s assassination deteriorates into a decidedly anti-Western and anti commercial rabble.

President Pervez Musharraf’s policies may not be doing much to promote political stability and democracy, but they’ve been pushing growth and investment. “Pakistan has had economic stability for the last seven years,” says Reza Rahim, head of JPMorgan Chase in Karachi. Investment from abroad almost doubled in the year ending June 30. GDP was racing ahead 7% a year, and the stock market has surged 900% since 2000.

But since political opponents of Musharraf took to the streets in March to protest the suspension of the country’s top judge, most arrows have been pointing down. Foreign inflows into the stock market plunged by 88% from July through November last year, the Pakistani central bank said, just as suicide bombings emerged and the political rhetoric got inflamed. Standard & Poor’s put the country on credit watch late last month If further privatizations stall, that will discourage the multinational banks.

But it’s not so easy to pull out of a power plant or move a factory. American companies have poured more than $1 billion into Pakistan and contribute 8% to the country’s exchequer, according to the US Department of Commerce. Pfizer, Abbott, Wyeth and Merck all have plants in Pakistan. These are some of Pakistan’s earliest investors; some have been in the country for decades and have subsidiaries listed on the Karachi Stock Exchange. So does Colgate-Palmolive, which makes and sells toothpaste and detergent with a Pakistani partner. Philip Morris bought out its joint venture partner last year. AIG underwrites property and auto insurance policies there. Coca-Cola bottles and distributes soft drinks through a wholly owned subsidiary.

AES, the Arlington, Virginia power company, has two power plants in Pakistan where increased production was largely responsible for a 23% boost in Asia revenues in the third quarter. The company, one of the largest US investors in the country, says Pakistan is “one of our greatest success stories” and is in discussion to build another coal-burning plant there.

The instability in Pakistan might dent plans of a few other U.S. companies, even the ones that don’t own many Pakistani-based assets. General Electric (GE), for example, sold more than 500 gas turbine generators in the country, but GE does not maintain much of a presence on the ground there. Kentucky Fried Chicken and Caterpillar also sell from a distance, franchising or distributing products through local partners.

But for the heartiest investors, eventual domestic peace could reopen opportunities in a market of 165 million customers. And if Western companies refrain from investing, Chinese and Middle Eastern companies will. They have already bought most of Pakistan’s telecom assets.

Rahim insists things are not as bad as they look overseas. “The extremists are coming in from Afghanistan, far away from the urban centers where most businesses are located.”

“There are no tanks on the streets here in Karachi. But the government is not organized enough to go out and portray the softer side of Pakistan.”, he added.


And here's the Forbes story (dated January 28th) in full:

Caught in the Crossfire
Deborah Orr 01.28.08

Western investors that have poured billions into Pakistan must be wondering: Is the country a ticking bomb or does it just have a p.r. problem?

Pakistan is not only a foreign policy imbroglio for the U.S., particularly, but also a potential investment agony for Americans if the tumult following Benazir Bhutto's assassination deteriorates into a decidedly anti-Western and anticommercial rabble.

President Pervez Musharraf's policies may not be doing much to promote political stability and democracy, but they've been pushing growth and investment. "Pakistan has had economic stability for the last seven years," says Reza Rahim, a member of one of the country's family business dynasties and head of JPMorgan Chase in Karachi, which has helped the government privatize telecom and oil assets. Investment from abroad almost doubled in the year ending June 30. GDP was racing ahead 7% a year, and the stock market has surged 900% since 2000.

But since political opponents of Musharraf took to the streets in March to protest the suspension of the country's top judge, most arrows have been pointing down. Foreign inflows into the stock market plunged by 88% from July through November last year, the Pakistani central bank said, just as suicide bombings emerged and the political rhetoric got inflamed. Standard & Poor's put the country on credit watch late last month.

But it's not so easy to pull out of a power plant or move a factory. American companies have poured more than $1 billion into Pakistan and contribute 8% to the country's exchequer, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce. Pfizer (nyse: PFE - news - people ), Abbott, Wyeth and Merck (nyse: MRK - news - people ) all have plants in Pakistan. These are some of Pakistan's earliest investors; some have been in the country for decades and have subsidiaries listed on the Karachi Stock Exchange. So does Colgate-Palmolive (nyse: CL - news - people ), which makes and sells toothpaste and detergent with a Pakistani partner. Philip Morris bought out its joint venture partner last year. AIG underwrites property and auto insurance policies there. Coca-Cola (nyse: KO - news - people ) bottles and distributes soft drinks through a wholly owned subsidiary.

AES, the Arlington, Virginia power company, has two power plants in Pakistan where increased production was largely responsible for a 23% boost in Asia revenues in the third quarter. The company, one of the largest U.S. investors in the country, says Pakistan is "one of our greatest success stories" and is in discussion to build another coal-burning plant there.

The instability in Pakistan might dent plans of a few other U.S. companies, even the ones that don't own many Pakistani-based assets. General Electric (nyse: GE - news - people ), for example, sold more than 500 gas turbine generators in the country, but ge doesn't maintain much of a presence on the ground there. Kentucky Fried Chicken and Caterpillar (nyse: CAT - news - people ) also sell from a distance, franchising or distributing products through local partners.

If further privatizations stall, that'll discourage the multinational banks.

But for the heartiest investors, eventual domestic peace could reopen opportunities in a market of 165 million customers. And if Western companies don't invest, Chinese and Middle Eastern companies will. They have already bought most of Pakistan's telecom assets--mobile subscribers jumped 79% in the year ending last June--while U.S. firms, for example, took a pass.

Rahim insists things aren't as bad as they look overseas. "The extremists are coming in from Afghanistan, far away from the urban centers where most businesses are located," says Rahim. "There are no tanks on the streets here in Karachi. But the government is not organized enough to go out and portray the softer side of Pakistan."


This is not the first time someone on this blog has caught the Daily Times cheating. Three years ago, at the conclusion of Pakistan's cricket tour of the West Indies, one Mr. Muhammad Ali "wrote" an article titled "Beyond the Boundary: Pakistan conclude West Indies tour on pleasing note". The article was published on June 9, 2005. Here's the fourth paragraph of that article:

The second Test at Kingston gave Pakistan a comprehensive 136-run victory. Inzamam and his charges were at their best and walked all over their opponents. Inzamam and Younis hit centuries to help Pakistan post healthy totals in both innings while Danish Kaneria and Shabbir Ahmad ran through the top order in the second innings to draw the series 1-1. This was Inzamam’s 22nd Test century, and it is worth noting that 17 of these centuries have resulted in Pakistan wins. To take it one step further – two more of his centuries have resulted in draws. When Inzamam scores, and scores big, Pakistan just don’t lose. Pakistan were also lucky as the West Indies’ star batsman Lara, who played a dazzling knock of 153 in the first innings, did not click in the second.

Unfortunately for Mr. Muhammad Ali, I happened to read Anand Vasu's piece on Cricinfo, published two days earlier, on June 7th. Here's the third paragraph from that article:
But from that moment on, Inzamam blunted the West Indian attack. Slowly but surely he began to pile on the runs, unfurling the big shots often enough, even under pressure, to pick up 14 boundaries in an unbeaten innings of 117. This was Inzamam's 22nd Test century, and it is worth noting that 17 of these centuries have resulted in Pakistan wins. To take it one step further - two more of his centuries have resulted in draws. When Inzamam scores, and scores big, Pakistan just don't lose.

Since I don't read the Daily Times cover to cover, every day, I can only guess how many times they've cheated other writers out of their intellectual property. They deserve to be condemned in the strongest possible terms, and I (we) hope to see some action by their editorial staff.

9 comments:

AKS said...

I feel like a real champion!

I would advise our readers not to be blind sighted by the fact that this appears under the "Daily Times Monitor" moniker. A monitor is supposed to give the readers of a newspaper a taste of what's being written in other newspapers, by providing brief a summary of an article which are to be adequately attributed to the source:

Here are two legit examples:

http://www.iht.com/articles/2005/09/04/news/edother1.php

http://www.slate.com/id/2183079

The reproduction of an entire article by another newspaper / magazine falls under syndication for which a newspaper has to pay. Moreover, even under syndication the author or the source are to be attributed. Dawn does a very good job in this regard.

Daily Times might not claim authorship but they are stealing the story.

Ahsan said...

yeah, absolutely. if you don't source, you're cheating. it's that simple.

mr. muhammad ali doesn't even have the faux cover of the monitor label. he flat out lifted it. i only remembered his plagiarizing after today's incident.

bubs said...

I guess I would be outraged by this but Daily Times does this every day on their op-ed page. They do not pay anything for all the articles in the Foreign Views section. One of the op-ed editors just lifts stuff off the net. You will notice that this is the only Daily Times section not online.
This pisses Dawn off a lot because they pay The Guardian and Washington Post a lot of money to reprint their stuff. Dawn also has an exclusive agreement with Robert Fisk to publish his articles. Fisk and others have written to Daily Times asking them to stop and threatening to sue but you can guess what the verdict of a Robert Fisk v/s Federal Minister Salman Taseer case will be.

AKS said...

@ bubs

The assumption that its impossible to stop Daily Times from plagiarism is wrong and is what allows them to get away with their crap. Dawn needs to stop being toothless and fight it out in the Court; and they have excellent grounds to do so. Its not impossible to bring a case and succeed against Salman Taseer & Co; I'm speaking from personal experience here.

Asad said...

"hope to see some action by their editorial staff."

the same editorial staff that ran a picture of bilawal zardari which took up 1/4 of the *front page*, accompanied by the story... oh wait...
there was no fucking story.

you know, because we don't have borderline famine, inflation, terrorism etc. etc. to write about.

instances like this don't speak to your point about plagiarism, but they do demonstrate the integrity practiced on a regular basis by an editorial staff.

and this is just one example of the tabloid policies commonly utilized by the daily times and it's sister publications.

so with respect to your hopes, ahsan, exercise in futility.

Ahsan said...

well i can't speak to the legal intricacies of this whole thing, but i do know that shame and humiliation is a powerful deterrent. so perhaps if enough people know about this, there's a chance they'll stop doing it. or am i being too naive there too?

Anonymous said...

Finally, the Daily Times is getting its due criticism.

Khalid Hassan is its U.S. correspondent. On occasion he writes original work. His essay type pieces are highly original. But this guy was ZA Bhutto's press secretary. I don't know if he actually ever was a journalist -- who, you know, did sourcing and all that kind of stuff. Most of his work is copying and pasting. But again, his essays are pretty solid. Maybe he's just busy paying the bills with his job at Dunkin Donuts. JK.

As far as the op-ed page of the paper. Goodness. It's just a display of faux intellectualism and the false pretentiousness of the elite of a country in which a majority can't even read!

Have you noticed Ejaz Haider uses the word "sexy" so much? Babu probably stays up at night dreaming of writing for Vanity Fair.

Dawn is not perfect, but its reporting is definitely more solid than Daily Times--which seems to be more of an outlet for Taseer, Sethi, Haider & Co.

bubs said...

@ahsan:
I do think you are being too naive. A 45-year-old guy who doesn't know how to operate a computer is not going to be too happy that he can't jerk off to Maureen Dowd's picture.

@anonymous
I have to take issue with just about everything you have said.

Khalid Hasan has a long history as one of Pakistan's best columnists. As the US correspondent for DT his job is to report on what the US media and politicians are saying about Pakistan. He does that job very professionally and always mentions the source of his information. Also if you have a problem with former political operatives becoming journalists, or vice versa, you would have to take that up with just about every media organisation in the world.

I'm not quite sure why you are criticizing the DT op-ed columnists for being part of the elite in a country where the majority is illiterate. If the majority cannot read English, does that mean there should be no English op-ed columnists? You've really lost me there.

Anonymous said...

bubs, I like Khalid Hassan. I think his commentary/feature type works are great. But he usually writes the "Daily Times Monitor" pieces, and they don't always have attribution. It's just a bit half-assed. So what I'm saying is that he's better fit as a press secretary and columnist, rather than a true blue reporter. Get the difference?

I'm not criticizing the DT for being part of an elite. It's not their fault they can read.

I just think their discourse is too distant from reality and it's more of a performance. Brown sahibs trying to pretend like they write for a yuppie American publication. That shit is fake. That's all I have to say. It's a bit too noxious for me.

My point is that they need to vamp up their reporting. They seem overly concerned with pontificating on the editorial and op-ed pages -- or playing out their fantasies.