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Holding Out Hope for Plagiarist Filip Miucin

Filip Miucin is not having a great month…

Recently, evidence surfaced that now ex-IGN editor Filip Miucin plagiarized a fair amount of content. The evidence stemmed from a video produce by YouTube channel Boomstick Gaming which cited major similarities between their review of newly released game Dead Cells and the review narrated by Filip Miucin on IGN’s channel. Boomstick published a side by side comparison of the videos that showed the fairly blatant plagiarism of the smaller channel’s content.

Having been called out, Miucin published a half-hearted apology on his personal YouTube channel, in which he largely played the victim. Miucin even challenged others, specifically games journalism site Kotaku, to continue to check into his work for any instances of plagiarism. The internet, never a community to back down from a challenge, found numerous cases in which Miucin took other’s work and presented it as his own. The apology video has since been removed (although, nothing is ever truly gone from the internet), Miucin work has been removed from IGN and his position terminated, and a hard lesson was learned: never challenge the internet to find evidence of a thing you definitely did.

Hindsight is 20/20 I guess….

The gaming community is rightfully upset, dealing with the fallout from stolen and sometimes false reviews, it is likely that Miucin’s journalism career is severely damaged, if not over completely and people were quick to express their anger at the betrayal.

Regarding Miucin’s lack of true, genuine apology Paul Tassi of Forbes writes “Miucin’s defiance in the wake of all this evidence is both maddening and also sadly, expected.” With the hurt that Miucin has caused across the industry, it can be difficult to move forward.  However, in a community based on second lives, continues, and opportunities to try again, I wonder if Miucin shouldn’t be offered a second chance. For that to happen, however, he must be willing acknowledge the hurt he has done to the developers, IGN, and the community as a whole.

When to Forgive

Many want Miucin’s career to be permanently over. During the time of Miucin’s employment, people made gaming decisions based on their trust in his work. With these acts of plagiarism, that trust is broken. Furthermore, there is a feeling of violation that comes from having your work stolen that Boomstick Gaming, and many others, undoubtedly felt learning that someone else had profited from their passionate hard work.

Please do not misunderstand, Miucin’s actions are inexcusable and Boomstick Gaming and the many others will need time to recover their broken trust. Yet, I believe that we ought to extend grace and forgiveness, at least on a personal level, to someone who, honestly, is only barely asking. When we hold on to anger and hatred towards a person, it builds inside of us giving it power it shouldn’t have. Offering the type of forgiveness I am advocating does not imply that the Miucin acted justly. Instead it shows that his actions are not the end. Not the end of us, the end of the community, and not the end of Miucin. Offering forgiveness releases our obligation to carry hurt and burden and gives us an opportunity to move forward.

When to Rehire

Should Miucin be hired in any journalistic capacity? It seems as if Miucin either does not know what he did was wrong or is unable to look beyond himself and admit his failures.

Personally, if I were in a position to do so, I would not hire Miucin. At least, not yet. He needs to  acknowledge his deceitful actions and the hurt that he caused Boomstick Gaming and others if trust is ever to be restored. Sincere apology and a demonstrated desire to change are vital to reconciliation and neither has been shown. Miucin seems to only barely feel remorse, looking only at the consequences he faces presently and not the consequences others are facing because of him. At the very least, I think Miucin needs to take a long break from writing and making videos about games. If and when he is ready to come clean and change, perhaps our collective thoughts on his career should also. I think we should hold out hope for people like Miucin. No one is the sum of their past actions.

Holding out Hope

We all hate admitting mistakes. We have to grow through our own mistakes and learn how to live better with one another. By being open about and willing to grow from our failures, we show the world that their investment of grace and forgiveness does not go wasted and begins to bridge the gap between hurt and brokenness.

Plagiarism, like any other form of theft, violates the victim, robbing them of not only their intellectual property, but of their trust. But everyone needs second chances, opportunities to grow, and extra lives. Furthermore, when we receive the grace we extend to others, we must be willing to own up to our mistakes and the hurt they cause. As a community, we can stand with one another instead of kicking each other while we’re down. Let’s not let go of hope. Let’s forgive when it’s difficult and seek reconciliation with one another when it’s easiest not to.



Daniel Burton is a writer, podcaster, and blogger from Jacksonville, Florida who lives with his dog Izze. He is a colossal Bible nerd, MCU nerd, and loves gaming on the Xbox when he has spare time. You can find more of his work at TheGospelOutpost.com.

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