Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Plagiarism

Right now even the New York Times knows that a couple of ghost writers lifted parts of Oprah's, JK Rowling's, and Coco's graduation speeches and incorporated it into Manny Pangilinan's. Savvy businessman that he is, he handled the situation perfectly: appearing contrite, offering to resign, and still keeping the identities of the plagiarizers secret.

Five years ago I was teaching a literature class and had the students review a novel for their final project. I remember allowing them to search online reviews and discussions if they needed additional insights. What I got was a significant number of students submitting cut-and-paste reviews.

I found out because a lot of them were written in near-perfect English (a facility that the plagiarizers didn't have) and because a couple included the book prices and availability information from Amazon. I went ballistic on the school's yahoogroup (it was, and still is, a small school) and failed every plagiarizer on sight.

I still automatically fail anyone who submits cut-and-pasted work.

I also wrote this.

4 comments:

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