Cons associated with plagiarism

Plagiarism is the representation of someone elses idea, content or work without their knowledge depicting it as their own work or failing to assign where the credit is due. Its ‘ctrl c and ctrl v’ to put in terms of computer, in academic terms its copying the language, idea or information from the source with giving appropriate reference.

Why does it matter?

Plagiarism goes against the academic honor and it’s unethical towards the one, you might have used as a reference. The problem is not that you are using a source, it is natural that you will be using one but its primary that you cite your source/reference correctly and give credit where its requires, otherwise you are by default taking credit for someone elses work, whether you intended it or not.

On an academic level if caught plagiarizing you might be reprimanded or suspended or might not be awarded your degree depending on your school policy. However, professional academic plagiarism might leave a black mark on your career and reputation and you might be legally liable for copyright infringement. This will become detrimental to your professional life.

Why is it necessary to avoid plagiarism?

To state it in simple terms, plagiarisms puts a dent in the growth of critical thinking. To put forth you own ideas and views you need to catch the young, so the concept needs to be inculcated at a graduate level. This is the reason why many of the top colleges have strict no plagiarism policy. The purpose of these instated polices is to breed independent thinkers who can draw conclusions themselves. Initially it might seem hard and you will be paraphrasing the words of your source, (but don’t forget to cite them) eventually you will develop the knack to present your own views.

In order to generate a high quality of work one must avoid plagiarism at all cost, once you acquire this practical skill by default your the credibility of your paper/work soars.

Does this imply that one needs to cite every bit of information?

Not necessarily some information is considered universal or rather known as common knowledge, these need not be cited.

For example, ‘Delhi is the capital of India’ this is a common knowledge, and does not require a reference. However, stating that ‘India is the fifth most polluted country in the world’ will require a citation.

To err on the side of caution, when in doubt it is better to source the reference.

How can one check for plagiarism?

Only those who have previously read the source article/paper might be able to catch a plagiarized work even when it’s paraphrased.

That where technology comes into play, most of the Indian universities use Turnitin or URKUND anti-plagiarism software tool as a means to check for plagiarism. These cross refer your paper with a large database set and analyze it for similarities. These plagiarism software tools are not free or cheap.

For students large number of websites provide free plagiarism checker which they can avail to ensure that they did not plagiarize someone by mistake.

Plagiarism decrease the integrity of your paper, it may be hard initially because we are habituated with the copy, paste tendencies but we need to rise above to produce credible and independent work.