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David Bednar's recent conference talk is said to have been plagiarized


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38 minutes ago, bluebell said:

I get that, but at the same time, in this 'plagiarism or mistake' discussion, intent does seem to play a part.  Are most members willing to admit that Bednar made a mistake and could have forgotten quote marks?  I would say yes.  Are most members willing to admit that Bednar knowingly used someone's work and choose not to attribute it to him?  I would say no.

So while intent may be immaterial in academic standards, it's not immaterial in this discussion.

I'm saying that none of us knows how this process actually works, and that it wouldn't be unreasonable for someone else to be in charge of actually typing up the talk and getting it to the church's department for him. 

Ultimately the buck stops with Elder Bednar, sure, but (if someone else typed this up and submitted it--which we don't know) anyone who's ever had an executive assistant (or worked as one) also knows that you have to be able to trust them to do their job well without checking the correctness of everything they do, or there is no reason to have one.  

Sure, but that's not the issue, is it?  That's not what the critics are exciting about or the members are pushing back against--whether or not Bednar is ultimately responsible for everything done in his name.  The question and the reason this thread exists at all--from what I'm seeing--isn't to gauge his responsibility.  It's to gauge his intent.  

It's, "is this an honest mistake or is it an apostle trying to deceive?"  

Agreed, it's definitely not important if it's a mistake.  And there's the rub.

If this was an issue of owning a mistake, do we really believe that critics would have been all over it like they have?  Nah.  This isn't about the critics making sure that someone's work gets the attribution it deserves or righteous indignation that it wasn't done as it should have been.  It's not about the responses to or rectifying of a mistake.

Like you pointed out, no one is going to get this worked up over that.  

I get worked up by that.  I never noticed it until President Nelson said something that I had heard earlier said by a woman, but no one seemed to pay attention to it till he did.  I've yet to find who originally said it (and it could have been him), but I have seen where women said it years before.

Since then I have noticed that members are so quick to grab quotes that they often misatribute to the current speaker and not either some past speaker or a book or something. Now when I find a quote I like I go to the talk to see if the speaker really said it or not. (By the way, the website is much better about attributing than it used to be) Or sometimes do further searches. But by the time I notice the damage is usually already done by all the memes.

And it isn't just conference talks that bother me.  There is a quote that gets posted or used in signs and decorations that credits Mother Theresa, but it wasn't her.  It's all over the place. 

38 minutes ago, bluebell said:

This is, at its heart, an accusation against the moral character of Bednar.  That is what is getting the critics worked up, and that is what is getting the members worked up.  And given that, the apologetic responses seem reasonable from my perspective.

I can't read all of their hearts so I can't agree with this for every critic.  I do think there are some who will be bothered by it and if I had discovered it on my own I would have been too. But generally I think you are correct that for most it is a moral character issue of intent. 

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1 hour ago, bluebell said:

I get that, but at the same time, in this 'plagiarism or mistake' discussion, intent does seem to play a part.  Are most members willing to admit that Bednar made a mistake and could have forgotten quote marks?  I would say yes.  Are most members willing to admit that Bednar knowingly used someone's work and choose not to attribute it to him?  I would say no.

So while intent may be immaterial in academic standards, it's not immaterial in this discussion.

Can you point to anyone arguing in this thread that the plagiarism was intentional? Because I can point to several posters that flat out deny plagiarism exists in this instance. 

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41 minutes ago, Rain said:

I get worked up by that.  I never noticed it until President Nelson said something that I had heard earlier said by a woman, but no one seemed to pay attention to it till he did.  I've yet to find who originally said it (and it could have been him), but I have seen where women said it years before.

Since then I have noticed that members are so quick to grab quotes that they often misatribute to the current speaker and not either some past speaker or a book or something. Now when I find a quote I like I go to the talk to see if the speaker really said it or not. (By the way, the website is much better about attributing than it used to be) Or sometimes do further searches. But by the time I notice the damage is usually already done by all the memes.

And it isn't just conference talks that bother me.  There is a quote that gets posted or used in signs and decorations that credits Mother Theresa, but it wasn't her.  It's all over the place. 

I can't read all of their hearts so I can't agree with this for every critic.  I do think there are some who will be bothered by it and if I had discovered it on my own I would have been too. But generally I think you are correct that for most it is a moral character issue of intent. 

I always appreciate your posts to me because they remind me of the importance of being precise when I post.  You've misunderstood me a little, but it's completely my fault because I was not at all clear.

When I said "get worked up by" I meant, decided to create posts and publish articles about it on social media and/or devoting a lot of time and energy to morally judging Bednar's actions. 

And, I also needed to be more careful about my lack of qualifiers on that post.  In my first one to SU I tried to remember to put in qualifiers like many or most but I was not careful to do the same in my second and I should have been.  I agree that it's not all critics (and I should have defined 'critic' when I used it, because I was referring to those who have come across to me as gleeful or self-righteous in catching an apostle doing something wrong).

And I agree with you about how we as a society are horrible and attribution and it really is annoying.  I trust nothing that I see on social media anymore when it's attributed to someone famously respected or infamously hated because of it.

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5 minutes ago, SeekingUnderstanding said:

Can you point to anyone arguing in this thread that the plagiarism was intentional? Because I can point to several posters that flat out deny plagiarism exists in this instance. 

To be honest, I haven't read the entire thread.  I went back through it (skimmed it) and I think moneymaker was really the only one that I saw here.  I only saw Scott Lloyd deny the plagiarism completely, but I could have easily missed others.  

But it's all over other places on the internet.  I've conflated those discussions and this one into one "social media" discussion.  That's what I meant by "this".  

(Wow, I am not doing good today at all in communicating effectively-my apologies to everyone).

 

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9 minutes ago, bluebell said:

To be honest, I haven't read the entire thread.  I went back through it (skimmed it) and I think moneymaker was really the only one that I saw here.  I only saw Scott Lloyd deny the plagiarism completely, but I could have easily missed others.  

But it's all over other places on the internet.  I've conflated those discussions and this one into one "social media" discussion.  That's what I meant by "this".  

(Wow, I am not doing good today at all in communicating effectively-my apologies to everyone).

 

Well this thread is the only place I have seen this being discussed (I’m sure it’s else where as well) and the “critics” in this thread have only expressed dismay at the lack of ownership and accountability of what is a serious issue. One that Bednar himself has expressed himself as to how important proper citations are. 
 

“In a better world, Elder Bednar would acknowledge his error and apologize, but that isn't the Church's way. So, we get the usual deflections and excuses, and the messenger is duly shot.”

This is what critics are saying in this thread. 

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35 minutes ago, SeekingUnderstanding said:

Well this thread is the only place I have seen this being discussed (I’m sure it’s else where as well) and the “critics” in this thread have only expressed dismay at the lack of ownership and accountability of what is a serious issue. One that Bednar himself has expressed himself as to how important proper citations are. 
 

“In a better world, Elder Bednar would acknowledge his error and apologize, but that isn't the Church's way. So, we get the usual deflections and excuses, and the messenger is duly shot.”

This is what critics are saying in this thread. 

I wouldn’t consider Nevo a critic. But again, this confusion lays squarely at my feet. 

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1 hour ago, bluebell said:

I always appreciate your posts to me because they remind me of the importance of being precise when I post. 

 

This morning I really hope you feel this way.  I don't mean to make you worried about being precise - which I know is not what you are saying so you don't need to explain it. I just know that I do make some people that way.  I want you to know I love you and am so grateful for your wisdom. 

1 hour ago, bluebell said:

You've misunderstood me a little, but it's completely my fault because I was not at all clear.

When I said "get worked up by" I meant, decided to create posts and publish articles about it on social media and/or devoting a lot of time and energy to morally judging Bednar's actions. 

And, I also needed to be more careful about my lack of qualifiers on that post.  In my first one to SU I tried to remember to put in qualifiers like many or most but I was not careful to do the same in my second and I should have been.  I agree that it's not all critics (and I should have defined 'critic' when I used it, because I was referring to those who have come across to me as gleeful or self-righteous in catching an apostle doing something wrong).

And I agree with you about how we as a society are horrible and attribution and it really is annoying.  I trust nothing that I see on social media anymore when it's attributed to someone famously respected or infamously hated because of it.

 

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3 hours ago, bluebell said:

To be honest, I haven't read the entire thread.  I went back through it (skimmed it) and I think moneymaker was really the only one that I saw here.  I only saw Scott Lloyd deny the plagiarism completely, but I could have easily missed others.  

But it's all over other places on the internet.  I've conflated those discussions and this one into one "social media" discussion.  That's what I meant by "this".  

(Wow, I am not doing good today at all in communicating effectively-my apologies to everyone).

 

You are talking to the one who does this on an ongoing basis, not communicating, lol. Seems like the Bednar thing seems minor, but I'm no college graduate. I'm surprised it was brought up by Religion News, I don't know about these things but when I gave talks in church I would usually say where I got a story or had read an Ensign talk etc. And I would have liked Bednar to have done that, mention his talk is from that article. I think you said he did but I didn't see that or I better listen or read it again.

The other day there was a news story I mentioned briefly in another thread of a situation where news and social media and others are really sockin' it to the church these days. The documentaries now that have members of the church have stories that aren't in a good light and the many podcasts...the list goes one.

It's like way more than when Romney was running for president and there was the, "Mormon moment" in the Newsweek thing. This is far bigger IMO. 

The news show was on Fox 13 a week or so ago. Here it is, just found it:

https://www.fox13now.com/news/local-news/is-lds-church-culture-under-attack

Edited by Tacenda
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This thread is highly amusing to those who live in the real world. No one in the real world ever cares about attribution. In the real world,  no one cares where you get your ideas as long as they work. I highly doubt any of you footnote your emails (you certainly don't footnote your posts here).  Do any of you footnote the talks you give in church? I don't think anyone (other than nit pickers on the internet) care whether the ideas presented in general conference are original to the speakers or not, In fact I would assume most ideas presented aren't.

I certainly would not like to pay for my employees time while they try and track down and footnote the sources of all of their ideas. In fact a whole lot of the papers that I write (and charge my client for) are cut and pasted from other sources. My clients don't care, in fact they are appreciative that I don't charge them for the time it would take if I attempted it.

Attribution rules are just one of those silly things you learn in college then try to forget as soon as possible.

 

 

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2 hours ago, ksfisher said:

He did.

You mean the below? It doesn't happen until quite into the talk.

 

A Christian author, John O. Reid, noted that the man’s refusal to wear the wedding garment exemplified blatant “disrespect for both the king and his son.” He did not simply lack a wedding garment; rather, he chose not to wear one. He rebelliously refused to dress appropriately for the occasion. The king’s reaction was swift and decisive: “Bind him hand and foot, and take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”18

Edited by Tacenda
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On 10/8/2022 at 6:05 AM, Calm said:

The thing is it’s not an academic paper nor an academic setting.  Why would you expect academic protocols?

I was forecasting the discussion to eventually wind up discussing the minutia of academic publishing - because I thought that would be the closest pile of minutia available. I might not have been far off.  It would have been cool to learn there's a whole equivalent to AcadPub for sermons, taught in theological universities but maybe there isn't. Everyone just wings it, I suppose.

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On 10/8/2022 at 11:37 AM, Tacenda said:

I wish Elder Bednar had mentioned that he was inspired or (?) by the article at the beginning of the talk. Or that some of his thoughts came from the article and he will be putting it in his own words. Since the footnote with the article is provided then it would have came off better that he's admitting ahead of time that he would use his own words to relay the main points in the article and then add upon it. 

This is sort of my take on it. Had I not read otherwise, I'd of been pretty adamant it was an Bednar Original, based on the delivery.

I still think that's how it comes across but during the talk - however, I was pretty focused on how the allegory seemed to frame us as Jesus's reluctant 2nd choice - and I was a little frustrated that that foundational component didn't even get a mention in his talk.

Back to Bednar, I am withholding a conclusion because I can't arrange the pieces in a way that makes sense. * I'm missing something and without it, I can't give the benefit of the doubt or hint at a problem. For the moment, I'm simply confused.

* skimmed the thread because busy; sorry if I missed something critical

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Once again folks jump to huge conclusions before any of the facts are known. This is the communication scourge of our times. 

LDS GC is a non-event for the vast portion of humanity. Who has the time, money, desire, and interest to scour every LDS General Conference talk for errors, misstatements, offensive words, gaffes, misquotes, omissions, mistakes…large or small? Those whose lives are wasted seeking whatever they can find to embarrass the Church and its leaders?

Why not just ask, “Elder Bednar, in your talk you appear to have left out some attributions. Will you please explain what happpened?” Some hesitancy to cancel him should be displayed given his background, seriously responsible positions, and life-time experience before hurrying out to fetch the comfy chair.

 

Edited by Bernard Gui
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5 hours ago, Bernard Gui said:

Once again folks jump to huge conclusions before any of the facts are known. This is the communication scourge of our times. 

LDS GC is a non-event for the vast portion of humanity. Who has the time, money, desire, and interest to scour every LDS General Conference talk for errors, misstatements, offensive words, gaffes, misquotes, omissions, mistakes…large or small? Those whose lives are wasted seeking whatever they can find to embarrass the Church and its leaders?

Why not just ask, “Elder Bednar, in your talk you appear to have left out some attributions. Will you please explain what happpened?” Some hesitancy to cancel him should be displayed given his background, seriously responsible positions, and life-time experience before hurrying out to fetch the comfy chair.

 

Can you point to a single post in this thread that suggests he should be cancelled, or is this more of your persecution complex? 
 

Also how does one ask Elder Bednar a question?

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39 minutes ago, SeekingUnderstanding said:

Can you point to a single post in this thread that suggests he should be cancelled, or is this more of your persecution complex? 
 

Also how does one ask Elder Bednar a question?

As if you don’t delight in every seeming foible and perceived imperfection you can find in the Church and it’s leaders. And why cancel a Church leader when it’s much more fun to carefully pick through their life’s work in search of the next thing to condemn in the quest to supposedly “prove” the Church isn’t true?

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1 hour ago, SeekingUnderstanding said:

Again, where does the idea of perfect church leaders come from? Is it critics who can’t accept that their leaders are human? Or do they learn that from strident church defenders?

I think it's tied up in a few things.  We are taught that to hear the Spirit clearly you have to be doing things that allow us to feel it.  We hear stories like when Joseph Smith was not able to translate once it was because he had a disagreement with Emma so he repented.  

Then there is not speaking badly about our leaders.

So while no one ever tells us they are perfect I think sometimes people start putting it all together- if they are receiving revelation for the whole church, if God trusts them enough to lead the church which will give us what we need to get back to God, if they are possibly seeing God or angels, if they are not only attending temples, but also dedicating them then they must be pretty close to perfection.

I don't know that everyone thinks "they must be close to perfection", but when you consider the above, people start to get the feeling that the person is close enough not to make _____ mistake.  When really there are probably a lot of people around you that are that close to God, but their callings are different in life.

Edited by Rain
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18 minutes ago, Rain said:

I think it's tied up in a few things.  We are taught that to hear the Spirit clearly you have to be doing things that allow us to feel it.  We hear stories like when Joseph Smith was not able to translate once it was because he had a disagreement with Emma so he repented.  

Then there is not speaking badly about our leaders.

So while no one ever tells us they are perfect I think sometimes people start putting it all together- if they are receiving revelation for the whole church, if God trusts them enough to lead the church which will give us what we need to get back to God, if they are possibly seeing God or angels, if they are not only attending temples, but also dedicating them then they must be pretty close to perfection.

I don't know that everyone thinks "they must be close to perfection", but when you consider the above, people start to get the feeling that the person is close enough not to make _____ mistake.  When really there are probably a lot of people around you that are that close to God, but their callings are different in life.

And of course there are things like this from Pres. Woodruff. Which seems to point to the inerrancy of God's appointed in leading people astray

President Wilford Woodruff stated: “I say to Israel, The Lord will never permit me or any other man who stands as president of the Church to lead you astray. It is not in the program. It is not in the mind of God.”

 

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16 hours ago, Rain said:

I care.

Here is one of the reasons I care.  If you know who said it you can more easily go to the source and read it in context.  Not only that, but when you read it you often hear things that will help you with the thing that is quoted. I've done this a lot with conference quotes.  Also, the source may give you similar ideas to what was quoted.

Right now I'm sitting in a book store and just bought "Tattoos on the Heart" written by a jesuit priest who works with gang members.  At least 3 of his books are titled with a quote from those he has worked with.  I'm excited to get into the book to find out about the person who said this.  What was in his life?  How did he change?  

But it also matters to me because too often it is those who are not seen that get their quotes attributed to more well known people.  I wanted them to be seen and appreciated.  I want to know what got them to the place where they gave that little bit of wisdom or info.

If you find any of my posts need an attribution or footnote then please let me know because I try never to share someone else's words without telling who it is from.  

Lol,

Look,  I don't really care if you provide attributions on your posts or not, and I really don't want to go through your posts to look for missing attributions.  I like reading your posts the way they are. 

My point is no one in the real world outside academia is obsessed with providing the proper attribution to everything they say.  Almost every idea we have originated somewhere else but who has the time to meticulously look up and document everything. Following MLA or APA (or whatever guide you are using) is something only academics care about for the most part and those of us in the really world don't care about.  

 

Not to criticize your post above but to illustrate how you (Like everyone else in the real world)  aren't really concerned about attribution in your ordinary communications,  in the post above, you don't name the Jesuit priest who worked with the gang member, you don't put the date published for the book or the publisher, you don't name the 3 books that are titled with a quote from people he worked with.

 

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