All knowledge helps create other knowledge and nothing can be considered really original and new. You may think that you have created a work that is entirely your own but many other writers’ work may have enriched your idea and helped you form this opinion. In this way previous knowledge is the building block of your work and it is imperative to credit it as such. It is possible that you may not remember the source from which you have gained this inspiration or where did you find the supporting arguments for your analysis. However in today’s time with most books digitized it is not hard to find even the exact lines that you need to cite!
In order to effectively counter plagiarism it is essential to understand what constitutes it. The boundaries between imitation, borrowing, replicating and plain copying are very hazy and confusing and you may think you have merely referred to another person’s idea, almost innocently, but it actually makes your work plagiarized. To help such a situation there exist plagiarizing checkers. The internet has made life easier for us in every aspect! Sitting in front of your computer you have access to every kind of information and knowledge, even to places that you cannot, normally, physically go to! This has made copy pasting much easier, since it is humanly impossible to actually go to that many sources and find where certain lines and paragraphs have been extracted from. Plagiarizing checker becomes the beacon of hope in such a bleak situation. It is very intelligent software, which is normally available on the internet for free. It is simple to use and its working isn’t very difficult. You simply need to copy paste the article in the checker and it highlights all the lines and paragraphs that have been copied from anywhere else! This allows you to find out just how much of a work is plagiarized and if it isn’t properly cited then you can easily chastise the author of the work.
People often confuse paraphrasing with plagiarizing. If you take a line or paragraph from another author’s work which supports your point of view, you need to cite it properly or else it will become a case of ‘copy and paste.’ Paraphrasing is understood as changing the words of the sentence while reproducing the same idea, even if you shift around the sentences it may still be very close to the original. In this case it is always better to cite the source that you have used for supporting your argument. This not only saves your work from being branded as plagiarized it also shows you appreciate the author’s help.
Intellectual theft is a serious crime, as serious as harming another person’s property because ideas are sacred. There is no harm in getting inspiration from any place, neither is there any problem in properly citing the source of your inspiration. People can now check where you copy from so it is better to cite it honestly!