Plagiarism and the Internet

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Plagiarism and the Internet In the days before computers research had to be done solely in books, articles, or on personal interviews. It was not so easy to attain an abundance of valuable information so quickly. Now children are taught from early ages to utilize the computer and the Internet. Searching school topics on web browsers is common knowledge for today¦Ðs youth. But with this breakthrough technology also comes consequences and rising disputes. Is the information that Internet-users are finding valid sources? What legal restrictions does one have in using those sources? Are the sources themselves legal? Students ¡cutting¡ material from a variety of different sites and ¡pasting¡ them into a word document as if it were their own work has become a common practice among high school and college students. According to the Salt Lake Tribune, seventy-five percent of students admit to committing ¡academic dishonesty¡, however only twenty-five percent of students from the same populous consider ¡cutting and pasting¡ to be the only serious form of cheating (Southard 2). A national survey conducted by Education Week estimated that fifty-four percent of students admitted to plagiarizing information from the Internet (Plagiarism.org 1). At the University of California-Berkley officials have stated that there was an averaged seven hundred and forty-four percent increase in cheating between the years of 1993 to 1997 (Plagiarism Statistics ¡ Did You Know??? 1). Perhaps one of the reasons for this drastic increase of cheating is the easiness in which one can find the documents that they plagiarize. Popular websites such as ¡www.schoolsucks.com¡ and ¡www.a1-termpapers.com¡ provide immoral and slacking students with hundreds of prefabricated essays (Plagiarism, Ethics & the WWW 2), equipped with word count and grade received. Another possible reason for the increase in plagiarized schoolwork is the nation growing decline in ethics. The Callup Organization in 2000 published a list of the top problems facing the United States. The number one problem was education, followed by decreasing ethics. These two rankings perhaps aided in the creation of some of the other listed problems below, such as poverty, drugs, crime, and racism (Plagiarism.

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