When people plagiarize, they present someone else’s words or ideas as if they were their own. Which of the examples below would be considered plagiarism? Which would not be considered plagiarism? Explain. (If you’re not sure, that’s fine. Just explain why you’re uncertain.)
* Note that we are not concerning ourselves with APA or MLA in this discussion. Pretend you are encountering the examples in a newspaper or magazine, where academic citation style isn’t even used.
This set of examples has been used by many different instructors. Teachers (both K-12 and higher ed) participate in a culture of sharing that is intended to benefit students and normally isn’t considered plagiarism. Politicians, too, often present words that they did not themselves author. Everyone is aware of the role of political speech writers, and thus this practice is not considered plagiarism. Can you think of other situations where one person presents the words of another without citation, and the practice is not considered plagiarism? What is the difference between the situation you have in mind, or the situations described above, and that of plagiarism that appears in the work of an individual author (whether a student or professional author)?
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