It is always appealing to use common phrases, quotes, examples or words of wisdom to get readers attention or make our writing attractive or appear professional. The main aim of using these appealing phrases is to show the reader and the general public we are informed individual or well vast in our profession. However, using these phrases or quotes without acknowledging the original source or the composer of the quote is unethical and unacceptable. This is stealing someone credibility and effort. Additional, it kills the spirit of research, competition, advancement in ones career and critical thinking. It makes individual to be lazy and narrow minded since they cannot think wide (outside the box). Therefore, plagiarism should be condemn and ban in all professions if development of knowledge is to be realized.
Plagiarism is using, passing or presenting someone else work, thoughts or ideas without giving him/her credit or recognition for the work they have done. It can also be describe as stealing or coping someone else ideas, product without their permission or knowledge. Additionally, coping someone else work but not referencing the work at the end or writing without quoting someone else ideas are considered as plagiarism. Moreover, plagiarism is not restricted to writing alone, copying someone’s art such as image, painting or lyrics in a music or video footage is considered also as plagiarism (Lamoreaux, 2012).
Jayson Blair was a well known journalism in the United State working for the New York Times. He had a promising career in journalism. He started working at the newspaper company as an intern while still studying at the university. After graduating from University of Maryland he joined the New York Times as a full reporter. However, the management received complaints from several people complaining or questioning the credibility of his stories since he started working for the newspaper. The management of the newspaper at first did not take much interest into the matter and allowed the reporter to continue with his work (NYTimes, 2003).
It is reported that, the journalist fabricated the comments of the people he alleged to interview. He plagiarizes his articles from other newspapers or magazines stories so as to appear legit and prominent writer. He wrote about places he has never set his foot in or interview which had never took place. He also reported about events which never took place and were unreal. Furthermore he uplifted and edited photographs from the wire services, newspaper and internet sources to show his story were real and the events actually took place. In an interview with Oprah he admitted copying other reporters’ work especially the story he carried out on the 9/11. He confirmed that plagiarism made his work easier (Huffingtinpost, 2014). He used these tactics to write emotional stories such as the 9/11, aguish families with loved ones in Iraq to name a few. These emotional stories is what made him famous and people started getting interested in his stories. However, after persistent complains from the public and editors from leading newspapers in the country, the management started investigations into the claims. The truth of plagiarism was discovered but the management resulted in warning him first about his activities and hoped that he will change. However, he did not change his tactics and he was forced to resign (NYTimes, 2003).
Therefore, it is paramount students and other professions to be honest in their work and writing practice. This is because it improves and increases the academic knowledge in any professional. Honest practice not only creates a good public image but also increase public trust and confidence in our work. Additionally, it gives a chance for fair competition. Students can avoid plagiarism by doing extensive research on what they want to write. This will help them to avoid writing what has already been written. The students and other professional can also quote or reference their work and avoid writing famous quotes or examples which they are not sure of their origin or source (Lamoreaux, 2012).
Huffingtinpost. (2014). Former New York Times Reporter Jayson Blair On Plagiarizing For The First Time (VIDEO). Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/08/15/jayson-blair-new-york-times_n_5682750.html
Lamoreaux, M. (2012). Educating Students About Plagiarism Marika Lamoreaux, Kim Darnell, Elizabeth Sheehan, and Chantal Tusher Georgia State University.
NYTimes. (2003). Times Reporter Who Resigned Leaves Long Trail of Deception - NYTimes.com. Retrieved from http://www.nyti.mescom/2003/05/11/national/11PAPE.html?ex=1367985600&en=d6f511319c259463&ei=5007&partner=USERLAND
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