It's been just more than two weeks since Jonah Lehrer quit his post at The New Yorker after it emerged that he fabricated quotes in his book Imagine, but as Buzzfeed's Ben Smith and Reyhan Harmanci report, he's still got another gig within the Condé Nast publishing empire, at his old publication, Wired. The magazine, which published Lehrer's Frontal Cortex blog before it moved to The New Yorker's site, confirmed to Smith and Harmanchi on Tuesday that it was keeping Lehrer's features contract intact, and that "a couple of pieces [are] already in the works." Wired spokesman Jon Hammond called Lehrer's decision to invent quotes from Bob Dylan for his book Imagine "a horrible mistake," but said it "does not diminish his work as a valued contributor to the magazine and website." Wired has been vetting Lehrer's past work for the magazine and "to date we have not come across anything that seems too troubling," Hammond told Smith and Harmanchi. On Twitter, Buzzfeed deputy technology editor John Herrman floated the theory that Wired editor in chief Chris Anderson "is more forgiving than most other EICs when it comes to stuff like this," because he's also had a brush with plagiarism. In 2009, passages from Wikipedia appeared in Anderson's book, Free: The Future of a Radical Price, without citations.
Update, August 16, 12:06 p.m. EDT: Wired has clarified Lehrer's relationship with the magazine in a statement posted on Poynter's MediaWire that reads, in part:
We want to ensure that there is no confusion regarding reports today about writer Jonah Lehrer and WIRED. Jonah has not been “hired” by WIRED; he’s been a contributing editor at the magazine and the website for years.
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