Plagiarism : What is it, and how do we avoid it?

Essay by ToelessfootHigh School, 12th gradeA, April 2003

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What is plagiarism? Plagiarism is when someone uses another's idea, opinion, or theory in a way that would benefit them, without giving the appropriate credit. The information can be heard, seen, explained, etc... it doesn't really matter how you acquire it, if someone fabricated it before you did, it's not yours. For example, one of the most common forms of plagiarism encountered in our modern day and age is information taken from the internet copy pasted into one's work. The person using the copied information would either plainly insert it into his work, or modify the structure of some sentences in order to blend it with the rest of his text, witch is by the way, still considered plagiarism.

Plagiarism has been around for a very long time. In fact, ever since man could think for himself there's been plagiarism. Let's say a primitive man creates a tool that would help him with his everyday life, another primitive man cannot show someone else the creation without holding the creator responsible for his invention, or that would be considered plagiarism.

Plagiarism hasn't changed very much since the dawn of man, the idea is the same only now we have laws protecting people against it.

While trying to avoid plagiarism you must not only lookout for ideas and opinions or thoughts but you must also look out for graphs, drawings or anything that isn't common sense. If you find an article on the internet or in a magazine that you want to use in an essay without having to quote it or give the appropriate credit and that you can call your own, you must make it a paraphrase and change it around enough for it to actually change in content. You can still use facts and so on that are...