NEW YORK -- Johann Hari said he would not return to journalism in the UK when questioned on Monday about resuming a role on Fleet Street. The disgraced former Independent columnist, who is currently promoting his book “Chasing The Scream”, said, “I don’t want to go back to that, I'm writing another book”.
Speaking to Caroline Modarressy-Tehrani on HuffPost Live, the author, who resigned from the newspaper following a plagiarism scandal in 2011, prevaricated when asked to account for why he had negatively edited the Wikipedia pages of fellow journalists under a pseudonym.
The 36-year-old said: "I think if you do something wrong you should encourage people to see it from the perspective of the people you harm, not from your own perspective, so if I start giving a personal narrative and start talking about myself I think that’s inevitably asking people to see it from my point of view and I’m not going to do that.”
In September 2011, Hari was unmasked as Wikipedia editor David Rose, an account that had attacked fellow journalists Nick Cohen and Francis Wheen via the online encyclopedia.
Hari also admitted to having lifted material previously written by interviewees, passing it off as his part of his own interviews. However, the author said he hadn’t excessively sourced his current tome due to the scandal but wanted to make a “transparent book as that was a good thing in itself”.
In a recent interview on the podcast Little Atoms, Hari said he would pen a personal apology to those he attacked on Wikipedia.