Has Derek Low been plagiarising since his years as a student?

High flyer or serial plagiariser? Everyone’s new favourite travel blogger Derek Low has fallen from grace as quickly as he rose to fame with his documented account of flying in the very luxurious Singapore Airlines Suites class. 

A number of publications, including us, have since pointed out that the viral article (which has been shared by Fox News and Daily Mail), contains a number of plagiarised content from various other blogs that have written about the exact same experience. Phrases and quips from other weblogs such as Andy’s Travel Blog, and Gatsby’s Green Light magically made it into Low’s own post, which seems like a completely unnecessary move considering that he had a great spread of original images. On Reddit, gplpride observed that Low’s writing was decent, and “could have been fully original if he tried”. 

The plot thickened last week when mothership.sg uncovered another incident of Derek Low’s plagiarist spree, copying even more lines from even more travel stories. Low’s trip to Bolivia’s Salar De Uyuni sees him describing the salt flat as “blanched completely white and so flat that the variance in height from any single point to another is less than a meter” — which is word-for-word lifted from The Basement Geographer

Seems like there’s no end to his unoriginality. Turns out, the Berkeley graduate might have started his idea stealing spree way back in 2007, during his years as an Electrical Engineering & Computer Science student. Similarities between the documentation of his engineering projects and science website Loneoceans Laboratories have been pointed out. 

Here’s Low writing about his flamethrower experiment (published in 2007), which comprises of the same set-up as Loneoceans Lab’s Gao Guangyan’s fire cannon (published in 2004).

Here’s Low constructing a Jacob’s Ladder in 2007, which Gao also did four years before

Both engineers also seem to have similar interests in creating their own Tesla coils, which honestly is pretty cool. But still. 

To be fair, Low actually credits Gao in his Pneumatic Air Gun project. Not sure if they actually know each other in real life.

Sure, these might be common engineering experiments, but the similarities are uncanny and the fact that Low is aware of Gao’s website drives suspicion further. 

In any case, Low should have known better — especially as a university graduate — to lift sentences and phrases without crediting. Till today, he still hasn’t shown any remorse or apologized for his flagrant acts of plagiarism, and is actively culling comments calling him out on his Facebook page. According to the plagiarized travel blogger Andy on Reddit, Low is apparently trying to get angel investors for his startup project. “….if he ever goes public with anything that’s when this will get really fun”, he writes. 

Photo: Derek Low Facebook page; Loneoceans Laboratories; dereklow.co; lab.dereklow.co

Read Also:

Blogger documents flying in SIA Suites Class, makes everyone insanely jealous

WTF: Singapore travel blogger did fly in SIA Suites, but ripped off his account of it


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