Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Be sure to give me credit...

. . . when you 'borrow' my post on plagiarism.

My site meter, located at the bottom of this blog, shot up yesterday when Jim Davila of PaleoJudaica linked to my post on plagiarism.

Thanks, Jim, for the interesting distraction from the grind of grading essays. I had a lot of fun clicking on the site-meter readings to see whence came the people who were perusing what I had to say about the ease of catching online plagiarists.

I now expect that within a few days, I'll be able to Google-search a line from my plagiarism-post and find people citing me . . . or (irony of ironies) quoting me without acknowledgement.

Such are the pleasures and risks of a life online.


At 1:49 AM, Blogger Kevin A. Wilson said...

I thought I would give you an additional story on the plagiarism theme.

I teach at a college in Lithuania where the language of instruction is English. Lithuanian, like many Eastern European languages, has no articles, so one of the ways we spot plagiarism is by noticing a paper that switches from poor use of English artices to excellent use. Usually, that will indicate a section of the paper has been copied.

My favorite plagiarism, however, was a student who had found Matthew Henry's commentary on the Bible on-line and had paragraphs from it into the paper as if it were his own. I don't know if you have ever heard a 21st century Lithuanian speak English as a second language, but it almost never comes out sounding like Matthew Henry's 18th century flowery prose.

At 3:58 AM, Blogger Horace Jeffery Hodges said...

Korean also lacks articles, so a sudden proficiency with definite and indefinite articles would be one of the signs of plagiarism here in Korea -- but there are so many other differences between Korean and English that one need not rely heavily on patterns of article use alone.

Korean students also sometimes copy passages that they're unfamiliar with but that are well-known to, say, Americans and that are thus instantly recognizable as plagiarism.

Thanks for the anecdotes.


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