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tofu
2006-Apr-09, 05:20 PM
Hypothetically, let's say that I'm working on a paper for a history class and the topic of the paper is, "Why I love Churchill" and it occurs to me that last semester, for another class, I wrote a paper on the topic of WWII. So now it occurs to me that the paragraphs in the WWII paper that deal with Churchill's "their finest hour" speech could be reused in my current "Why I love Churchill" paper.

Is that wrong?

WaxRubiks
2006-Apr-09, 05:21 PM
depends on whether you are going to publish, I would have thought.

Taks
2006-Apr-09, 05:26 PM
you need to quote them (if large enough, indent the whole quote, too), and then reference the churchill paper. it needs to be very clear which portions were not written by you. also, rephrasing can be considered plagiarising as well, so be careful not to write the same thing with different words.

reminds me of a funny on the wall outside one of my classes. a woman in the principal's office complaining about her son's 0 on a paper. she notes that while he copied an entire paper, he did reference the whole thing as the original author's, is it still plagiarism? certainly not plagiarism. but certainly not consisting of enough original content (nor any) to be worthy of a grade above 0.

taks

Taks
2006-Apr-09, 05:28 PM
depends on whether you are going to publish, I would have thought.nooo... it depends only upon whether you ever intend to show someone the work.

expecting credit (of any kind) for it will cause problems, legal and otherwise. a grade is credit. and plagiarism is highly frowned upon in schools.

taks

tofu
2006-Apr-09, 05:29 PM
you need to quote them

I think you missed my point Taks :)

**I** wrote both papers.

Moose
2006-Apr-09, 05:33 PM
You missed Taks'. Doesn't matter: you still have to quote it (you can quote yourself) and properly attribute it. It's plagerism to claim credit for your own work twice.

tofu
2006-Apr-09, 05:47 PM
You missed Tak's

No I didn't. Tak said: "it needs to be very clear which portions were not written by you." None of it was not written by me. Tak missed my point. It's not a big deal.


It's plagerism to claim credit for your own work twice.

What?? The words, "someone else" appear in all the definitions.

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=plagiarism&db=*

hhEb09'1
2006-Apr-09, 05:53 PM
You missed Taks'. Doesn't matter: you still have to quote it (you can quote yourself) and properly attribute it. It's plagerism to claim credit for your own work twice.I don't think you have to quote it (set it off by quotation marks). Authors often reprint their works--for instance, a collection of essays by an author will usually have a list of where the essays first appeared, but they don't quotate ( :) ) their own work. Sometimes, the essays are modified in the collected form, but the changes are not set off, or otherwise specifically identified. The original publisher may have acquired a partial or whole ownership of the work, and permissions and agreements may be necessary with the publisher.

I once reviewed an article for a geophysics journal. The authors had made minor changes to a theory that they had written up before, for a different journal. They cut and paste whole sections from the previous article. I contacted our university counsel about that, which I think is similar to the iissue that tofu is describing in the OP. The lawyer said it was up to the journal--the first journal may have a claim, depending upon their agreement with authors, but they might not. The authors clearly did not have a problem with it.

tofu should ask the teacher. The teacher may be expecting new work, and that would be the criteria--not a matter of plagiarism.

andyschlei
2006-Apr-09, 06:01 PM
You can re-use your own content however you want. It doesn't matter when or where you wrote it -- you wrote it. Using it again isn't plagiarism.

Now in the workplace, there is a premium for re-using work, even if it isn't your own. I have worked in consulting and we are forever taking slides, content, ideas from other presentations and proposals and re-using them without attribution. Not to re-use them would be failing to leverage the assets of the firm, and attributing them to a specific author would be awkward. Although I suppose it isn't plagiarism because the content is owned by the company not the individual.

hhEb09'1
2006-Apr-09, 06:07 PM
You can re-use your own content however you want. It doesn't matter when or where you wrote it -- you wrote it. Using it again isn't plagiarism.There is at least one caveat: if you've sold the rights to someone else.

andyschlei
2006-Apr-09, 06:11 PM
There is at least one caveat: if you've sold the rights to someone else.

Yes, of course you are correct, I didn't think of that.

So I should have said you can reuse any content for which you hold the rights for reuse.

Now I suppose we could start delving into copyright law and rights and licensing...

Donnie B.
2006-Apr-09, 07:55 PM
Of course, if you used any external quotes or footnotes in the original paper, you'd need to repeat the attributions in the second one.

epenguin
2006-Apr-09, 10:02 PM
"To borrow a phrase, there has never been anything new about plagiarism."

But apart from that, I guess that you and your school must be among the top few percent for you to even ask that question.
I don't know if it's a universal thing but in certain places I've seen students divide things into a lot of unrelated bits. The oxygen of respiration is something completely different from and nothing to do with the oxygen of chemistry, that sort of thing. So you're doing well IMO to realise that the Churchill you're writing about now is the same Churchill as figured in your WW2 history last semester. However it probably won't be just a question of copying what you wrote before. Coming back to it cold you may see where you could have done it better, and things will need to be adapted fitted and united with other things. IMO this uniting of things is more knowledge than knowing a lot of unrelated things so I think what you're doing is a + not a - .

tofu
2006-Apr-09, 10:25 PM
lol @ epenguin :)

I'm actually a grad student writing papers on software engineering. I just didn't want to bore anyone with details.

I have such a hard time concentrating, that's why I keep coming back to BAUT. I write for like 5 minutes and then I need a 15 minute break. Ugh. This is torture!

Gruesome
2006-Apr-09, 10:36 PM
**I** wrote both papers.

Then it's fine. I'm not sure of the educational 'ethics' question (i.e. whether some might raise eyebrows for the re-use of previous paragraphs) but as far as plagarism in a strict legal sense is concerned you have no worries.

QED

The Supreme Canuck
2006-Apr-10, 01:39 AM
Should be no problem. Submitting the same paper twice, though, is academic dishonesty, but not plagiarism.

Inferno
2006-Apr-10, 03:25 AM
Should be no problem. Submitting the same paper twice, though, is academic dishonesty, but not plagiarism.

I'd agree. If this was a profession paper for a science magazine you might think about quoting yourself, or at least saying something like "as I wrote in my 2005 paper..."

But as a simlpe school/ college essay I'd not bother quoting yourself. Just repeating would be ok - unless its the same teacher.

Andromeda321
2006-Apr-10, 03:36 AM
It's perfectly fine for school stuff but make sure your profs aren't using software to catch cheaters. If both classes are then your paper will come up as a false positive, and that can take a long time to sort out even if the paper was yours to begin with.

Maksutov
2006-May-02, 10:14 PM
Well, the book deal's off (http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/young_author;_ylt=ArCBRAGuoyI2Go6v4H26dw2s0NUE;_yl u=X3oDMTA2Z2szazkxBHNlYwN0bQ--). It would appear another definition of plagiarism is when your publisher cancels your two-book deal due to what they found to be lifted material. Oh well, maybe she can get a job writing speeches for Joe Biden (http://nutsandbolts.washcoll.edu/plagiarism.html). ;)

mugaliens
2006-May-02, 10:34 PM
I'd agree - if it's your own work, it's your own work. You might want to reference it anyway, just to show the teacher you're copying from your own work rather than someone else's, otherwise the electronic anti-plagiarism search engines might flag you for stealing your own work!

There're two schools of thought on plagiarism - include none of your material save for a couple of comments but loads of others, and quote all of it. Shows you're a great researcher. Include mostly your own, original thoughts, backed up with details as to how you arrived at those conclusions. Shows you're a great thinker, but if someone thought along those lines before, you're kind of out of luck.

mugaliens
2006-May-02, 10:40 PM
Well, the book deal's off (http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/young_author;_ylt=ArCBRAGuoyI2Go6v4H26dw2s0NUE;_yl u=X3oDMTA2Z2szazkxBHNlYwN0bQ--). It would appear another definition of plagiarism is when your publisher cancels your two-book deal due to what they found to be lifted material. Oh well, maybe she can get a job writing speeches for Joe Biden (http://nutsandbolts.washcoll.edu/plagiarism.html). ;)

That's really a shame. It's getting to be there really isn't any new thought any more, and plagiarism is as old as when the account of the flood was taken from ancient Sumarian legends.

So I hereby propose an "antiplagiarism law" that abolishes all plagiarism. Since it's all variated levels of using other people's work anyway, including "original thought" that obviously contains thousands of tiny pieces that have reassembled themselves into our brains just before the Aha! moment, why bother? Just call it lifted and give credit to where it's due:

And this is the important part: Give credit to those who can best, most clearly, and most concisely present the material.

Inherent in this skill of communication is the ability to sift through the material, regardless of its source, and find the good stuff, as well as presenting it in a manner targeted towards the audience. And you just can't do that without understanding the material in the first place! So there's that, too.

But scrap the idea of "plagiarism" because when you come right down to it, I doubt if anyone's had a truly original idea in the last six months!

But that's my original idea (opinion).

hhEb09'1
2006-May-02, 11:21 PM
But scrap the idea of "plagiarism" because when you come right down to it, I doubt if anyone's had a truly original idea in the last six months!

But that's my original idea (opinion).Plagiarism has very little to do with the re-use of old ideas.

Besides, I have original ideas every other week. I'm in the process of writing some of them down (not now!)

mugaliens
2006-May-02, 11:39 PM
Well, I do too. But even though I believe they're original, I'm sure there's a few hundred thousand out there thinking pretty much the same thing.

I'm good, but I'm not THAT good!