Stephen Covey, the inspirational teacher who composed “The 7 Routines of Extremely Effective Individuals,” says, “Trust is the highest form of human inspiration.”
As writers, trust is your biggest possession. Your reputation is merely a representation of our trust and authority.
Sadly, there is no much easier way to betray that trust than by dedicating plagiarism.
While many people think avoiding plagiarism is easy, it’s a bit more nuanced. Occasionally, plagiarism occurs unintentionally, such as through incorrect citations or forgetting to add an appropriate link.
In addition, plagiarism is not simply an issue of academic community but can likewise be a major problem for any kind of writing, consisting of blog site writing, journalism, sales copy, and even technical or medical writing from authors who originated a concept.
This guide will provide actionable techniques to avoid plagiarism and define what makes up actual plagiarism.
What Is Plagiarism, And When Is It Not Plagiarism?
Merriam-Webster provides a more formal meaning. We can specify plagiarism as the intentional act of copying one’s concepts and passing them off as your own.
Nevertheless, it is essential to differentiate what makes up plagiarism and what does not.
The borrowing of one’s ideas and even the elucidation of which does not necessarily implicate plagiarism if the writing is original or if they mention their source.
For example, if I write a brief blog site on the basics of SEO in my own words, I don’t have to give credit or cite whoever the very first individual to coin the term SEO was to prevent plagiarism.
In any field, the sharing of ideas is essential to the advancement of its knowledge base.
For instance, we can see Schopenhauer’s influence over Nietzche’s early concepts without the latter having to mention the former always.
In addition, anything thought about common understanding would not be plagiarism. If I said that Joe Biden is the president of the United States, I do not require to cite a source.
In addition, specifying idioms, such as “crossing the Rubicon,” does not require one to source Caeser.
However, content composed nearly verbatim of what another person has actually written without proper citation constitutes plagiarism. So if somebody were to copy and paste that last sentence into a blog, that would be intentional plagiarism.
Additionally, even if the wording of a message is altered, however its concepts and message are nearly verbatim what another person has actually written, this could qualify as plagiarism.
Why Plagiarism Is Bad
It almost doesn’t need to be said that “plagiarism is bad” is a common truism in our society and needs bit more description.
However, there are both useful and ethical reasons that plagiarism is bad that must be enhanced:
- It’s a type of intellectual theft.
- It compromises the stability and credibility of the author.
- Disregarding plagiarism sets a bad precedent for all the arts and sciences.
- Plagiarism blunts your writing skills and makes you a lazy author.
- It does not feel excellent when it occurs to you.
With that said, I do not think a bulk of plagiarism instances arise out of some sinister act however rather out of lack of knowledge or rush.
Common Sources Of Plagiarism
Plagiarism is easily avoidable using contemporary tools and by planning ahead. For instance, many academic students plagiarize since they put things off on projects or don’t understand how to point out things properly.
Some typical sources of plagiarism consist of:
- Purposeful theft.
- Improperly cited quotes.
- Inadequately paraphrased research.
- Utilizing a damaged link to mention something.
- Not comprehending that something isn’t common knowledge.
- Recycling previous work of your own without understanding or appropriately mentioning it.
To assist you prevent plagiarism, I’ve described 7 useful suggestions to adopt to your composing process to ensure your writing stays clean.
1. Make Notes When Citing Other Sources
If you resemble me, you most likely open up a lots tabs or two to investigate a subject right before you in fact write any words.
In many instances, plagiarism can result from merely forgetting to mention something you may have published to a draft or made a note of without understanding it.
That’s why it is very important to properly track all sources you mention, particularly if you use any direct quotes in your article or need to mention a fact or research point.
Monitor things you’re sourcing by including comments, highlighting, or hyperlinking to any material you are sourcing from other people.
When in doubt, if you’re unsure something requires a source, include a hyperlink or citation to be on the safe side.
From an SEO perspective, connecting to authoritative third-party sites is considered best practice, regardless.
2. Include Citations Or Links In-Text
Next, we require to figure out how you will cite the sources you consist of in your document.
In the meantime, much of academia requires APA citations, meaning you will need to include a footer after any quote from your source or a parenthetical citation, such as (Lieback, 2023).
For fields beyond academic community, inserting a hyperlink over a part of the anchor text associated to the source can be an easy citation.
For example, if I was pointing out Zeus as the world’s biggest pet, according to CNN, I could have used “Zeus,” “CNN,” or “the world’s biggest pet dog” as my anchor text for the source link.
Lastly, adding quotes and mentioning the author or source’s name can also be a sufficient type of citation in more informal fields beyond academic community.
For example, citing Steve Jobs as specifying, “Stay hungry, Stay absurd,” is adequate without linking or producing an official citation.
3. Paraphrase Details With Original Concepts
If you are not copying someone’s concepts verbatim, you will likely not require to source them, particularly for more informal writing.
Preferably, I motivate my writers to attempt and paraphrase concepts however present them in a brand-new light. Utilize the ideas you collect from your research study to support your own ideas and conclusions, which ought to be drawn independently when all the facts are collected.
Not just does this ensure your writing is clean, but it likewise makes you a more critical thinker.
One needs to ask themselves, what is the point of writing about another person’s ideas if you are not going to offer a new viewpoint?
Use the information you paraphrase as info, not gospel, to ensure that you always prevent plagiarism.
4. Carry Out Rigorous Proofreading And Modifying
The most straightforward method to avoid plagiarism is to catch it prior to you publish a paper. Taking the time to edit your piece and your citations will ensure that your piece stays clean and is not in danger of any ethical infractions.
Again, examine to see if the writing is original and that the writer derived their conclusions independently. This will make you a better editor as well.
5. Use A Plagiarism Checker Like Grammarly
Plagiarism tools are exceptionally useful for capturing errors that human beings can’t possibly view.
To check Grammarly’s plagiarism checker, I copied and pasted some text from a recent article on SEJ into the Grammarly editor.
Grammarly verified that the text I pasted matched what was released in the SEJ article. It even included a link to the SEJ post to utilize as a reference/citation for the text I pasted.
Screenshot from Grammarly, January 2023 Tools like Grammarly are great for discovering most webpage material, however they might not work with text from books, PDFs, ebooks, or any material that hasn’t been indexed by search. 6. Strategy Ahead Of Time Avoiding procrastination will guarantee you have appropriate time to proofread pieces and prepare your details accordingly. This enables you to keep an eye on all of your sources, find out
how to cite them properly, and help you avoid other mistakes. 7. Devote To Presenting Initial Ideas Finally, this point speaks
to the principles of why we write. By solving to be an independent author and thinker, you will never have to stress over plagiarism.
Most notably, you will be much more effective
since of it. Avoiding plagiarism isn’t always challenging
, however it needs discipline and appropriate preparation. More resources: Featured Image: GoodStudio/SMM Panel