Despite Jonah Lehrer’s very public and very lucrative apology last week for his plagiarism problems, those problems don’t seem to be going away.
Michael Moynihan, the journalist who uncovered Lehrer’s fabricated Bob Dylan quotes, has posted a story today that Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Lehrer’s book publisher, has removed How We Decide from sale. How We Decide was Lehrer’s second book, published before the (in)famous Imagine; I’ve written about some of the other problems with that book here.
The reason given for taking the book off the market was an “internal review” that uncovered “significant problems”. The “problems” weren’t specified by the publisher, but Moynihan points to a set of quotes in How We Decide allegedly from an interview conducted by Lehrer specifically for the book, but which bear a remarkable similarity to 20-year-old quotes on Wikipedia about the same issue.
The Knight Foundation, which hired Lehrer for the $20,000 speech, later apologized for the decision to pay him that much (although they didn’t ask him to return his speaking fee, at least not publicly). I’m thinking that right about now they’re probably really sorry…..