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Everything You Need To Know About Plagiarism And SEO

Everything You Need To Know About Plagiarism And SEO

Last updated: Feb 07, 2020

Today, search engines bots can tell if the content you’ve put on your site is plagiarised or not. This assists them in ranking webpages properly and bringing down websites that do not contain unique material.

Sometimes content you are copying has already been copied from somewhere else and may have been rephrased as well. In these cases, the meaning behind the content changes when passed on with different words because not every synonym has the same sense.

This not only affects the reputation of your website but will also be de-ranked for containing misleading information. This is the very reason why research is vital for your topic.

Does technology make plagiarism easier?

With the rise of the internet, information has been placed readily at our fingertips. This has made plagiarism more common or at least increased its temptation. Thanks to the internet, it’s far more common to see plagiarism caused by laziness, poor time management and generally not caring about the project.

For plagiarism, the internet is a double-edged sword. It helped us to detect plagiarism much easier but it also made committing plagiarism easier. Previously, searching for plagiarism was an extremely difficult task, requiring you to get very lucky or to work tirelessly to find it. However, with the rise of search engines finding and detecting verbatim plagiarism has been easier than ever.

How can you avoid plagiarism?

The key to avoiding plagiarism is citing your sources. It’s easy to find information about any topic on the internet, but it’s not always easy to add that information into your writing without falling into the plagiarism trap. To avoid plagiarism, we have broken it down into 4 main categories:

1. Quoting

Quoting occurs when you take the exact words from a source. Only quote if you believe the way the original author has expressed an idea is the most effective means to communicate your point. If you want to quote remember to copy the exact words, use quotation marks at the start and end of the quote, and give reference details, including the page/paragraph number.

2. Paraphrasing

Paraphrasing occurs when you express the meaning of something written or spoken using different words, especially to improve its clarity. When paraphrasing you must keep the meaning behind the words, rewrite the writer’s ideas in your own words, and give reference details

3. Summarising

Summarising occurs when you are taking the main ideas from a piece of text and rewriting them in your own words. A summary is significantly shorter than the original text and tends to give an overview of a topic area, which achieves the best balance of your thinking and others’ ideas. When summarising you should try to keep the author’s main ideas, but avoid simply copying the author’s words, and give reference details.

You should summarise more often than you quote or paraphrase because when you summarise, you demonstrate your understanding of others’ ideas and allow you to add value to your work.

4. Referencing

Referencing occurs when you acknowledge the works of others you have used, making sure it is clear which ideas are yours, and which are the authors. You may want to use the APA referencing style: the author’s last name, the year of publication, and the page/paragraph number (unless you are referring to ideas presented in the publication as a whole).

The common types of plagiarism

Complete plagiarism

Complete plagiarism occurs when a researcher submits an article under his or her name with a manuscript or study that someone else has created. It is the most serious form of plagiarism, it amounts to intellectual thief and stealing.

Direct or Verbatim Plagiarism

Direct or verbatims plagiarism occurs when an author directly copy text from a source and paste it into your document without attribution and quotation marks. In that way, it is similar to complete plagiarism, but it refers to sections (rather than all) of another source.

If the structure and the majority of the words are the same as in the original, then it is verbatim plagiarism, even if you delete or change a couple of words here and there. It is not as common, but it’s still an ethical infraction. If you want to use an author’s exact words, you need to quote the original source by putting the copied text in quotation marks and including an in-text citation.

Self or Auto Plagiarism

Self or Auto Plagiarism occurs when an author reuses significant portions of his or her previously published work without attribution. Even though it’s your work, it’s considered dishonest to present a paper or a piece of data as brand new when you’ve already gotten credit for the work. Self-plagiarism occurs when you use ideas, phrases or data from your previous assignments. As with paraphrasing, reworking old ideas and passages is not inherently plagiarism, but you should cite your previous work to make the origins clear.

Mosaic Plagiarism

Mosaic plagiarism is when an author copies phrases, passages and ideas from different sources and putting them together to create a new text. It occurs when an author doesn’t use quotation marks to reference original work or finds synonyms for the author’s language to use and mimic the authors' original work. Mosaic plagiarism may be more difficult to detect because it interlays multiple authors phrases, and passages within the text of other research.

Plagiarism Checker Tools

It's not all that difficult to avoid plagiarism with plagiarism checker tools. There are many sites that offer plagiarism checkers, one which we recommend this free plagiarism checker is Small SEO Tools:

Pros

1. Free of Charge
You don’t have to register or pay anything.

2. Ease of Use
The site uses a very basic, functional layout

3. Unlimited Scans
You can check for plagiarism as much as you want

4. Displays Matched Sources
The sources are matched to the text and given a similarity percentage

Cons

1. Limited Search
You are limited to 1000 words per search for some other plagiarism checkers