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Thomas Gallatin / August 19, 2021

Fact-Check, True: Snopes Cofounder Plagiarized

Self-appointed “truth arbiter” David Mikkelson admits to having plagiarized upwards of 54 articles.

Recently, it came to light that one of the cofounders of the leftist “fact-checking” site Snopes was caught for having published several stories over at least a four-year period that contained plagiarized content. David Mikkelson, who is co-owner of the self-appointed truth monitor, was outed via a journalist’s investigation that found he had plagiarized some 54 articles from sources such as The Guardian and the Los Angeles Times.

After the story broke, Snopes responded by initiating its own fact-check. Managing Editor Doreen Marchionni conducted an internal investigation and concluded that Mikkelson was indeed guilty of plagiarism.

“Let us be clear: Plagiarism undermines our mission and values, full stop,” reads a letter posted on the Snopes site, cosigned by Marchionni and CEO Vinny Green. “It has no place in any context within this organization.” They further invite readers to “let us know … if they find any other examples of plagiarized content.”

Snopes has pulled down all of the offending material from its site, much of it having been published under the generic title “Snopes Staff” or the now-defunct pseudonym “Jeff Zarronandia.” Mikkelson himself issued an apology and has been suspended from editorial production “pending a final outcome to the internal review.”

It is indeed telling that Snopes, which has billed itself as a “truth-teller,” has a history of shading the truth in favor of its own leftist political considerations. The most obvious target of this leftist bias has been the satire site The Babylon Bee, which Snopes has ridiculously subjected to its “fact-checking” numerous times — all clearly due to the popularity of the conservative humor site. We, too, have been erroneously targeted by Snopes.

Babylon Bee creator Jeffrey Swindoll responded to the news of Snopes’s plagiarism by observing, “So, in case you didn’t realize it before, the so-called fact-checkers — our arbiters of truth — are not trustworthy.” He then humorously added:

Also, gotta say it:

Babylon Bee: 57
Snopes: 0

Snopes taking [losses] left and right son.

File this story under “sweet irony.”

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