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Dear Author

Being an Asshole, Liar Does Pay; at Least at Lonely Planet.

As you can tell by the title, my impatience with publishers is rising. Their loose association with integrity becomes more evident every day. Last week, it was discovered that Lonely Planet, a travel guide publisher, was putting out books by an author who a) plagiarized and b) didn’t even travel to the places he wrote about and c) took money and freebies from businesses included in the guides.

Lonely Planet apparently has no intention of pulling the guides off the market because it “stands by the accuracy of its travel guides” and has “thus far found no inaccuracies.” Well, how about the copying? Or the fact that the entire Columbia section isn’t based on his own travel experience but what some intern he was banging told him in during coitus? The author says his initial admissions of wrongdoing were taken out of context and not true.

Dear Author

Plagiarism, Writing Scandals are Everywhere

Lonely Planet travel guide author Thomas Kohnstamm admits to plagiarizing parts of travel guides for   Lonely Planet, not actually going to the places reported in his books, and by taking money and perks from the travel industry.

Kohnstamm never even went to Colombia instead, “I wrote the book in San Francisco. I got the information from a chick I was dating  - an intern in the Colombian Consulate.” It doesn’t surprise me much that a guy who is lying to thousands of people by faking his travel guides would also use some “chick” to flesh out details of his work.

The best part?   Kohnstamm has written a book about his deceit so he gets to win twice.