For the past three months, Jonah Lehrer, science journalist, author of three books, and (former) New Yorker staff writer has been under siege. In mid-June, he was accused of recycling his old work and publishing it as new. Since then, a number of accounts assert that Lehrer committed the two mortal sins of journalism: fabrication and plagiarism.
Before Lehrer joined The New Yorker, he was one of the premier bloggers at Wired.com; the site still boasts several hundred blog posts he wrote for his Frontal Cortex blog. Quite naturally, when the Lehrer scandal first broke, the editors at Wired.com worried that his work for them was tainted as well.
That's where I came in. I'm a journalism professor and science journalist, and though I've written for Wired once or twice (and I happen to know and like Wired's editor, Chris Anderson), I was a relatively neutral, outside party who could check Lehrer's blog for journalistic malfeasance. So Wired.com asked me to take a look.