December 21, 2005

Kudams here, kudams there

Followup to Missing post from two days ago.

Last July, after a trip to the South, I wrote this piece in which I mentioned "round sort-of-spherical plastic buckets." Alert reader Charu sent me a note to ask if I was talking about plastic pots, called kudams -- which of course I was.

Charu's note also pointed me to her own site, where that very day she had put up a colourful picture of these plastic pots: here. If you click on that link, you will note that the picture was taken by a photographer called Sharad Haksar.

Two days ago, I was idly (I'm idle a lot these days) leafing through MidDay, and on page 17 I found that very photograph, and another one, in a box with this caption:
    Talk of bad advertising: MidDay reader Sarika Olia forwarded these pictures and we completely agree with her view that this happens only in India.

On the Web, you will find the photo on this MidDay page.

Both pictures are also on Haksar's site.

I wrote a letter to MidDay about this. It appeared in today's issue (December 21), with these sentences appended:
    Editor's note: Sarika Olia forwarded the pictures to us as a contribution to the My News page and had no intention of taking credit for the same. Thank you for helping us to trace the source.


Rahul Siddharthan said...

Did you tell the Mid-Day editors about it? Since you write there, I assume you have contacts there...

This photo has been in the news, eg so I'd have hoped the Mid-Day crew knew about it already. Nonetheless it was probably an honest mistake on the editors' part.

There is a deluge of plagiarism stories (I was shocked by the Gautaman Bhaskaran case because he's been around for years and was fairly well respected, and his website talks about how his British teachers taught him ethics and whatnot...) But I think the paper should be given a chance to respond before one blogs about it. Some, like TOI, won't care. But others will take action, if not publicly.

On the other hand, perhaps publicising this deluge in the blogosphere will spur papers to crack down on plagiarism... I have no great hopes though. It's rather hard to do.

Anonymous said...

Dilip, look at this article I have linked to on my post -
the picture on this page actually shows the full hoarding - with the name Sharad Haksar in caps at the bottom of the hoarding... the Mid-day reader, not so alert (?), has sent in an edited version whch was doing the rounds on the internet at that time... the version which appears on my blog...