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Mass Communication: Plagiarism



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Plagiarism: an ethical problem in the writing world

AORN Journal,  July, 2004  by Nancy J. Girard

Stealing is a crime. Although it is easy to identify when someone is stealing money or other tangible items, stealing words, illustrations, tables, figures, thoughts, or ideas can be harder to recognize. This type of stealing is called plagiarism, and it is happening more frequently these days.

Plagiarism can be a very difficult concept to grasp. After all, so many ideas and thoughts have been published already that it seems as though there are no original ideas anymore. What we perceive to be original thoughts really may be opinions and ideas written down by others and subconsciously ingrained in us through things we have read or seen. This is the dilemma of writers. Plagiarism can be intentional, but usually, it is unintentional.

There are many types of plagiarism. The most common are

* submitting someone else's written work as your own,

* copying information verbatim from the Internet,

* using incorrect paraphrasing,

* not documenting references, and

* copying from yourself. (1)


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Forrest Foster
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