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The Importance of Learning to Live with Plagiarism in the Global Age

All students know what plagiarism is, though not all realize what it means and what it looks like in real life. While rarely seen as a real problem at first, this issue can become the main problem of a careless learner and have highly dangerous outcomes. Nevertheless, the digital age brought several transformations that have significant consequences for all of us. Today, information and text especially can be distributed, transformed, and sent everywhere in the world. The future world will probably also present many difficulties of living with plagiarism, and many of such potential issues are yet to be understood and learned about. We’ve decided to study the problem of plagiarism and why it should be avoided. At the same time, we also study future trends.

Why avoiding plagiarism matters

So for those interested in why plagiarism is really important to avoid, we’ve prepared a small explanation. The easiest way to put it is this: plagiarism is cheating. It happens when an individual uses the part of another person’s work without properly citing and pretends that it is their own. Even if you do it unintentionally, your professor will recognize it as a violation of academic integrity. Most universities have cheating and plagiarism software that detects plagiarism and finds the pieces that belong to a different person. There are different consequences for it. In many cases, your efforts will become annulled, and your grade will become zero. On other occasions, plagiarism can lead to dismissal from the university.

From the moral and intellectual standpoints, plagiarism is also impermissible because it contradicts the goals of studying. If a person plagiarizes intentionally, they don’t get fair grades and also behave dishonestly in relation to their friends and peers who wrote their papers and research papers individually. Another aspect is the ability of a person’s brain to learn. Making it easier for ourselves sometimes is alright, but plagiarism makes one’s mind lazy and unable to create. Once you accept plagiarism as a norm, you fail your own learning abilities. That’s why students should try their best to address this problem as much as they can.

Signs of plagiarism

There are some signs of plagiarism that you can detect with the help of a plagiarism checker for teachers and students or without it. If you’re a teacher or a person trying to understand whether the text they read is original, here are the most common signs of it.

The phrase seems familiar to someone else’s work. It can happen if the author describes a definition, but if you’re reading your friend’s book that seems like a copy of Harry Potter, it is very likely plagiarized, though most likely unintentionally. If you’re judging your own phrases or paragraphs, you may seem that everything looks almost copypasted but with a few words changed.

The plagiarism checker notices similarities. Each plagiarism check for university students has its own types of reactions and levels of sensitivity, but if you’re using a reliable tool and it still shows that something is wrong, it’s better to trust it.

Very few sources and citations. If you’re a student and you have been writing an essay with many sources but there are few links to other authors, you may be in a risky situation here. Fewer than one citation per paragraph may require a bit of your attention to the issue.

Too complex words and phrases that don’t look natural. If you’re checking the other person’s work and notice that the words don’t make sense or look too complex, it can be that they tried to do so to hide plagiarism.

What will the future hold?

It is vital to accept that the future will be characterized by more problems with plagiarism because of the growing influence of technologies and anonymity on the Internet. Today, copying another person’s work is much easier: it doesn’t require any significant period of time to copy and paste anything into a word document. The world of Wikipedia and anonymous blogs makes it difficult to trace the authorship to a real-life person. Truly, we often hear about the best plagiarism checker for universities that can make it easier for people to find plagiarized pieces or even learn about whether the person’s style of writing is different from the paper they wrote before. But the efforts to overcome such checkers will emerge almost as fast.

At the same time, the way people view plagiarism will change. Many will no longer see plagiarism as a problem: the notion of a single author is already not entirely publicly real. The attitudes to creative and intellectual works are already transforming. It is likely that the future will show greater disregard for an individual’s intellectual property. And it can influence all of us.

How to avoid plagiarism in your writing

Being concerned with writing, we’ve written several tips to address this issue.

Always paraphrase and cite the used information. This is the basics of ethical data use. If you’re writing about a specific phenomenon, read all the evidence about it and then summarize it in your own words and change the structure. Use the recommended citation style in the text and on the reference page.

Keep the words and ideas that you believe in. If you use phrases that are not typical for your formal language and sound like something very ancient, you’d better find a better option. Similarly, don’t trust a writer or an author all the time: remember that they’re not necessarily right and don’t copy their opinions without analyzing.

Use a variety of sources. Try to compile a list of different opinions in scholarly works and read them carefully. Instead of retelling information and agreeing with everything, make notes and balance the different ideas in your own argument.

Don’t support plagiarism. Even if it’s easier to remain silent or if you’re afraid of harming your friend’s feelings, it is still better not to promote such standards. If your peers often do so, also try to refrain from following their ideas and remain focused on originality.

We will always address this problem

Over the past decade, plagiarism has lost some of its tainted appearance in the minds of many students. Since most information these days comes from online sources, it can be hard to discern or even simply notice who is the author of each written piece. The invisibility of authorship in the modern age is a challenge that we need to come to terms with. In addition to battling plagiarism with practical tools like Turnitin, educators also need to help students realize where the new border lies. It’s crucial to not only impose the standards of academic fairness but spark a conversation about how information is produced and consumed in the existence of the Internet, encouraging students to be the ones who create rather than copy-paste.

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