Check yo’self! Plagiarism tool available

Plagiarism is ethically reprehensible in the journalism world and is a violation of the University of Texas at Arlington’s student code of conduct. Plagiarizing – or using someone else’s thoughts and words as your own – affects your job and your academic status.

“Geez, Beth,” you’re wondering. “Duh. We know that.”

Before you blow off this note, consider the following:

  • Taking a sentence or a quote from a press release and not citing the press release is plagiarism.
  • Using a concept or thought from a person, website or other published material without attribution to that person is plagiarism.
  • Making slight variations in the language and then failing to give credit to the source is plagiarism.

Why is this important? As journalists, you gather material from a number of places … and those people gather information from a number of places. Ultimately, you are responsible for checking your own writing and anything you quote people saying.

Here are some resources to help you:

I’d suggest running a check for quotes you use, portions of stories, commentary from outside contributors, and any time you get a queasy feeling or wonder, “is this plagiarism?”

To better journalism,

BFC

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