These days it’s difficult enough to become a well established film critic, so, when one is caught plagiarizing, it’s not only an embarrassment, but it’s pretty disheartening for the rest of us.
Over the weekend Lianne MacDougall, a horror-genre writer from Fangoria, and Cineplex was caught plagiarizing. The real kicker? Lianne, whose pseudonym is Spiderbaby, is also the girlfriend of famed Hollywood director Quentin Tarantino.
Although “Spiderbaby” is mostly famous for being Quentin Tarantino’s main squeeze, she also has a book deal with St. Martin’s Press. News of the plagiarism spread throughout the internet over the weekend. It all started when an anonymous tip came in and reached several outlets.
Upon receiving the e-mail from the anonymous source, Mike White, who is known for blogging at The Impossible Funky, began to diligently research the claims. The claim specifically said that Tarantino’s girlfriend stole a huge amount of reviews for her FEARnet column called “Spiderbaby’s Terror Tapes.”
“She’s posted numerous articles on FEARnet as a column called “Spiderbaby’s Terror Tapes,” that have been largely based on other peoples’ work.”
According to White’s research, the Fright Bytes Rondo-award winning writer stole original sections from a few sites for an introduction to her piece on Suspiria. For this piece she lifted sentences from Film.com, HighDefDigest, and EmpireOnline to flesh out her piece, which is blatant plagiarism.
It’s a bit enraging to see anyone, let alone an honors graduate in cinema studies, lifting complete sentences and paragraphs from other sites to repurpose her writing. If you want to see everything highlighted and color coded in full, Mike White has a pretty comprehensive guide to Lianne’s exploits.
Although White notes that she attempted to throw her assistant Raven under the bus, by Saturday morning Tarantino’s girl disabled her website, and started apologizing via her Twitter account.
According to Gawker, Spiderbaby was very busy on Twitter following that, and re-tweeted a bunch of other users, instead of letting her apologies rest on the top of her Twitter timeline.
Of course after her tweet spree, the critic conveniently deleted her Twitter. Luckily the fine people at Gawker obtained the original Tweets for your viewing pleasure:
So far St. Martin’s Press has yet to respond to the scandal.