Many people are still under the impression that plagiarism is a pretty straight forward issue. Someone passes off another person’s work as their own. End of story right? Not exactly. There was recently developed a Plagiarism Dozen to identify plagiarism and all its forms and characteristics.
- The first type is called “Clone.” This means to completely use another person’s work as your own without giving the appropriate credit or receiving permission.
- The second type is called the “Copy Cat.” This entails sprinkling your own text with paragraphs or sections of another person’s work. The plagiarizer does this to confuse the reader into believing that the work is completely original by distracting them with some rudimentary original material.
- The third type is called “Find and Replace.” This is when a writer will cleverly change keywords and phrases while changing little of the content. For example, “The black cat walked by.” A person using this method might write, “The dark feline sauntered by.”
- The Fourth is called “Remix.” No, this does not mean music at a sweet rave party. Instead, it means to take phrases from multiple works, paraphrase them, and piece them together like a jigsaw puzzle.
- The Fifth is called ‘Recycle.” This is when you handsomely take work from an original author without giving the proper citation.
- The Sixth is called “Hybrid.” This sneaky technique combines perfectly-cited phrases, original material, and plagiarized content as your own.
- The Seventh is called “Mash Up.” Like the “Remix” technique, this utilizes copied content from a variety of sources and then combines them together as an “original” work.
- The Eighth is called the “404 Error.” This is providing inaccurate or faux citations.
- The Ninth is called the “Aggregator.” This is providing the correct citations to the proper sources without providing proper analysis of the material in question.
- The Tenth is called “The re-tweet.” This technique includes correct citation while being overly reliant on these texts’ wording or structure.
While all of these plagiarism faux pas are not equal in gravity, they are all equally important to avoid. When you do even the least severe ones like the “Aggregator” or the “Re-Tweet,” you are signaling to the reader that you are incapable of original thought or analysis. Is that really the message you want to send? Therefore, be mindful of all of these pitfalls and avoid them in your own work.