Dixon Doll: Plagiarist? [Update: It Was The Ghostwriter]

On January 4, Peter Hebert of Lux Capital wrote a guest piece for us titled Ten VC Predictions for 2010: Outrunning The Bear. Yesterday, venture capital icon Dixon Doll sent out an email on behalf of conference organizer IBF, for an upcoming event. Unfortunately, Doll’s letter included a pair of passages lifted verbatim from Hebert’s post without attribution.

The following appeared in both (without any syllabic difference):

After years of intrigue and speculation, not to mention tens to several hundred million dollars invested, several energy technology companies finally lift the curtain and introduce themselves to the world.

As weak fund performance from the lost decade finally forces LPs to question historic allocations to “franchise funds.

I don’t know if Doll wrote this himself, or if someone at IBF wrote it and he just pulled out his rubber stamp (I used to ghostwrite conference copy for another organizer, so I can easily imagine the latter scenario). Doll didn’t return my call, and IBF said it is “looking into” the situation.

No matter how it happened, imitation in this case is not flattery. It’s plagiarism.

Update: See comment below from IBF CEO Alexandra Scott.