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Independent adds attribution to controversial MacKenzie article

A piece in today’s Independent by former Sun editor Kelvin MacKenzie, in which he claimed “there’s nothing you can learn in three years studying media at university that you can’t learn in just one month on a local paper” was bound to stir up some debate.

But the controversy ended up going beyond the comments he made to the publication of the article itself, when MA Magazine Journalism student from City University Harriet Thurley claimed on Twitter that she in fact originally wrote the piece in question.

And here is a link to her feature, published in the university’s alumni magazine XCity last month. The two are indeed very similar. So what happened? As far as Journalism.co.uk understands, the article was submitted by MacKenzie to the Independent’s media editor Ian Burrell, who told Journalism.co.uk today that he was aware the piece had started out as an interview but felt that that it had been “considerably” rewritten by MacKenzie in his own style.

A line has since been added to the article online to say it is “an amended version” of the interview with MacKenzie by Thurley.

We have not yet been able to reach MacKenzie for comment, but Thurley has since tweeted claiming that he was not aware of her missing accreditation.

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Tumblr improves attribution process

Tumblr has announced an upgrade of its attribution feature which will now only provide attribution to original sources within the post content, rather than all re-bloggers.

In the announcement on its staff blog, Tumblr says the upgrade was needed to fix issues within its automatic ‘via’ system, such as links being dropped, credit being buried under re-blog links, frequent mistaken attributions and the resulting impact on post appearance.

Starting today, reblogging will no longer insert attribution into the content/caption of the post except to quote content added by the parent post.

The new feature will also enable authors to attribute content to a source outside of Tumblr which will then be attributed whenever the post is reblogged on Tumblr, while the entire reblog history will remain in the post notes.

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