Courtesy: Rappler and FEU Advocate

The former editor-in-chief (EIC) of the official student publication of Far Eastern University (FEU) Manila made a public apology on the November-December 2016 issue of the newspaper released on Wednesday, January 11.

Shereen Nicole Rivera, the former EIC of the FEU Advocate, has revealed that it has come to her attention that her “act of breaching copyright was recently determined” by Rappler‘s Marguerite de Leon and Raisa Marielle Serafica.

In her statement, she said she “wish to particularly extend” her apologies to the “writers from one of the most reputable news networks in the country – for directly lifting their published online articles” in her column space during Academic Year (A.Y.) 2014-2015.

Rivera wrote:

“I have realized that it was indecorous for me to use those crafts without proper attribution. I have disclaimed the recognition which their efforts deserve and that the action I made was an insult to their intellectual property.

I understand that my behavior of committing this unfortunate mistake has disappointed a lot of people, most especially the members of the organization I valued the most during my college years.

I could only apologize for failing in my ethical judgement. I did not aim to cause damage nor prejudice against anybody and I deeply regret my misdemeanor.

I am once again expressing my sincerest regrets for my lapses and I hope that the FEU community would still put their trust in the student press as the university publication is a home of aspiring media correspondents, mentored and guided by the finest journalists in the country.”

She ended, “I am hoping for everyone’s kind consideration about this matter.”

Meanwhile, the 83-year-old student publication stated in its editorial:

“The FEU Advocate operates on trust when we work with our working sections and our individual staffers… But when we were informed that our former EIC committed plagiarism, we have become aware of the flaws in our publication’s operation of trust.

Receiving news of the said incident was not easy for us as we were concerned with all of the possible consequences that would be put on our organization and to the University we belong…

After meetings with the publication adviser and FEU officials, we decided it be best that we come clean and open the situation to the whole university.”

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Rivera started in FEU Advocate as a features writer, and later became its features editor for two years – before she finally took her seat as the EIC from A.Y. 2014-2016. The alumna also served as a student correspondent for Philippine Daily Inquirer.

This story was first published on Rappler X.

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