Phroth Phail: How We Messed Up Yesterday’s Post

Yesterday, Onward State published a post insinuating that an article in the most recent issue of Phroth’s Phollegian had been plagiarized from the Onion. While the articles are indeed strikingly similar, the way in which the original article was researched and written fell below our journalistic standards.

I apologize on behalf of the writer and my organization for putting a decent man’s career in jeopardy– no doubt about it, plagiarism is a dirty word, one which should not have been brought up except in the most researched manner and under the most pressing circumstances. No effort was made to question Phroth or the writer in question prior to publishing the story, something I regret sincerely. Moreover, the post in question was bombastic and drew conclusions that far exceeded the more probable explanation of the articles’ similarity. However, I will leave the discussion of how Phroth’s editorial process works to EIC Rebecca Eisenberg, should she choose to accept our offer to write a column.

The original post is accessibly in .PNG format only through this link. The image– not indexed by search engines– is being kept up to honor our commitment to transparency.

As a result of this incident, we are instituting more thorough copy-editing guidelines. In that vein, I’d like to issue a call for anyone who might be interested in joining Onward State in a copy-editing capacity. You would be given an opportunity to help us design the system that will prevent us from making similar mistakes in the future. If interested, please email me.

Finally and unequivocally, I want to apologize to Fitzy McCracklepants (not his real name) for phucking up what could have been an otherwise fine post-Valentine’s Monday.

About the Author


Creator of @OnwardState. Big fan of sweaters. Now at Fusion.


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