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Monday 17 April 2000
amended Wednesday 26 April 2000

Geoffrey A. Landis Plagiarized in The Leading Edge

Author Geoffrey A. Landis, and The Leading Edge, an SF magazine published by Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, are victims of a plagiarist. The magazine's March 2000 issue, published last week, includes a story ''The Singular Habits of Wasps'', credited to one Phillip S. Barcia.

The story is identical, save for minor wording changes, to the Hugo- and Nebula-nominated story by Geoffrey A. Landis, published in the April 1994 issue of Analog.

Associate editor Peter Ahlstrom of The Leading Edge said that the magazine bought the story in good faith as an original work, and was only notified this past week about the plagiarism. The magazine's editors have been in contact with Landis, and have agreed to pay him for reprinting his story. A formal letter from the editors will appear in Locus magazine.

An autobiographical note about Phillip S. Barcia in The Leading Edge states that he lives in Arcadia, Florida, and has published works in Renegade, New Myths, Atom Mind, Climbing the Walls, and the Internet magazine Cell Door.

Investigation has revealed that Barcia is a prisoner at Desoto Correctional Institution in Arcadia, Florida. Landis has discovered two other plagiarisms. A story credited to Barcia and posted only a week ago in Cell Door -- a web magazine for prisoners -- is The Man Who Loved the Sea, copied from Alan Brennert's story in The Magazine of Fantasy and Science Fiction, September 1995. And an earlier story in Cell Door, Chameleon, was copied from ''Chameleon Is Hope'' by Pete D. Manison, from Analog, July 1994. Cell Door removed both stories from its website after being notified of the plagiarisms.

The Leading Edge, a volunteer, student-run publication, debuted in 1981. It has seen the first publications of M. Shayne Bell, Dave Wolverton, Diann Thornley, and Michael Carr, among others.

© 2000 by Locus Publications. All rights reserved.