Plagiarism refers to the act of claiming someone else’s work as one’s own and without proper attribution or credit to that original work. Essential to an act of plagiarism is an element of dishonesty in attempting to pass off the plagiarized work as original.

Within academia, plagiarism by students, professors, or researchers is considered academic dishonesty or academic fraud, and offenders are subject to academic censure, up to and including expulsion. In journalism, plagiarism is considered a breach of journalistic ethics, and reporters caught plagiarizing typically face disciplinary measures ranging from suspension to termination of employment. Some individuals caught plagiarizing in academic or journalistic contexts claim that they plagiarized unintentionally, by failing to include quotations or give the appropriate citation. While plagiarism in scholarship and journalism has a centuries-old history, the development of the Internet, where articles appear as electronic text, has made the physical act of copying the work of others much easier.

A reporter’s failure to honestly acknowledge their sources undercuts a newspaper or television news show’s integrity and undermines its credibility. The ease with which electronic text can be reproduced from online sources has lured a number of reporters into acts of plagiarism. Journalists have been caught “copying-and-pasting” articles and text from a number of website.

1) Read the New York Times opinion article here: “Journalistic Shoplifting (Links to an external site.)
2) Answer the following:
a. Write your reaction(s) to the author’s point-of-view.
b. Should there be distinction between intentional plagiarism and “innocent” plagiarism? Why or why not?
c. If you were advising young writers on how to avoid plagiarism, what advice would you give them?

3) Specifics:
a. 1 to 3
b. Margins: 1”
 c. Font: 12 pt., Times New Roman
d. Double-spaced
e. Citations: MLA format



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