For though plagiarism is undoubtedly a serious journalistic offense with grave consequences for both the plagiarizer
and the paper, the incidents themselves frequently play out like a liquor-store burglary bungled by the dimmest crook in the demimonde.
Jacoby says his studies of the cognitive unconscious suggest that, unbeknownst to some plagiarizers
, previously read material may automatically bubble to the surface during attempt to write about a similar topic.
Then smaller papers chimed in, owning up to plagiarizers here, fabricators there, to the point where this spring it was getting a bit hard to keep track of it all.
And he's confronted plagiarizers who immediately ask for a do-over.
If anything can stop plagiarizers or fabricators, common sense seems to dictate, it's aggressive questioning by shrewd, skeptical editors and creating a newsroom environment where concerns raised by readers and staff are dignified with responses.
Studies have indicated that the fear of being caught through the use of these detection sites is enough to keep some would-be student plagiarizers
If there is any good news, it is that while the Internet may be leading to more plagiarism, it probably isn't creating more plagiarizers, McCabe and Waryold said.
And, if all preventative measures fail, faculty members and college leaders say, you can sometimes even beat the plagiarizer at his or her own game--by using the Internet.