Do you know that content that is written by you is your intellectual property in the eyes of the law, much like original inventions. They fall under copyright laws. But there are some variations to these laws. Unless you have something to prove the content in question is yours, you cannot claim it. Whether it is in handwritten form or a digital file, you need it to prove your claim otherwise it is a lost cause.
Plagiarism isn’t just a crime but as a person, it makes you downright immoral when you steal someone’s content and pass it off as your own. Chances are that when you do commit this crime, most people will not find out but consider this: what if they do? If someone finds out you have been plagiarizing it does not only mean that the content in question is tainted but also anything you might have originally produced in the past comes into question.
When you are a college student, you do not have to worry about criminal charges against you as the matter is probably handled internally at your university. But don’t let that fool you into thinking you can get away with stealing someone else’s work. Plagiarism is more over into the land of morale when you are a student. If you are caught committing this crime, it is considered improper manner.
The question that arises is this: why as a student, plagiarism isn’t considered a proper crime? When looking at a problem, the most important thing to see is the intent as well as purpose behind it, only then can it be solved. As a student, you probably committed plagiarism to get a passing grade. Just because this doesn’t make you a felon, doesn’t mean there aren’t repercussions.
As a student, you should make it your first priority to avoid plagiarizing. I don’t care how tired you are from that frat party you went to last night, if you have to write a paper, make 100% sure you are not copying someone else’s hard work. As mentioned above, content that you steal from someone else, be it articles, short stories, blog posts, even pictures and videos are considered intellectual properties and stealing them would mean you have no originality to yourself.
As you are a student, I do realize how important it is for you to produce papers and projects even if they aren’t your original ones. Let me tell you this: the solution to this isn’t that you copy and paste someone else’s work and pass it off as your own.
Here are some effective ways to avoid plagiarism:
- Don’t rewrite any text, from any source, line by line. This increases the risk of you plagiarizing the content, even if you did not intend to in the first place.
- Paraphrasing is the most effective technique here. To paraphrase means to read and understand an idea expressed by someone else but writing it out in your own words. In other words, you don’t rewrite, but retain the essence of the idea as presented in the original source.
- Also, make it a point to run your submissions through a plagiarism check before you hand in your assignments or papers. If any content shows up as plagiarized, correct it.
Did You Know?
Did you know that plagiarism doesn’t only apply to intellectual property? If you steal pictures, sounds and even designs or drawings, you would be plagiarizing. Anything you take without the original author or photographer or musician or artist’s consent is considered stolen property.
I know how difficult it is these days to go on the internet and find exactly what it is that you are looking for. It’s like being thrown into an ocean expecting to find Nemo except you have never seen Nemo and there are a thousand clown fishes swimming by.
Lillian Wesley is a professional copywriter and content manager at Paraphrasing Tool. She is passionate about originality and offers tips and information to help others avoid plagiarism.
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Daniel & David
Why Plagiarism is a Student’s Ticking Time Bomb