The penalties for plagiarism may be legal, personal, professional and ethical.  After having many institutions turn to plagiarism detection tools, students are being charged with the offense at high rates and the rates are alarming. The moment a student is accused of plagiarism, he will be treated with suspicion. One cannot give an excuse of being ignorant. The legal penalties for plagiarism do not only apply to students but apply also to professionals, academics, authors, and journalists.

How is plagiarism defined?

It is popularly known to the public that the act of plagiarizing has everything to do with the theft of ideas from an original author. Many authors have diversified what plagiarism entails and the discussion has remained controversial to some extent. However, one cannot doubt the occurrence of plagiarism when an individual makes a conscious commission of the act and lies that the composed work is original. When there is a conscious commission of the act of fraud in writing, then legal penalties apply because theft can be justified. What happens therefore when it is not that simple to charge someone who has plagiarized work and is unconscious of his actions?

The legal consequences of plagiarism apply also to songwriters and have previously occurred in the music industry. In the favorite song ‘Frozen’ released in 1998 by Madonna, everyone around the globe enjoyed the music for seven years only for the singer to be accused of melody plagiarism. Madonna was accused of stealing Salvatore’s ‘Ma Vie Fout L’camp’ and the court found Madonna guilty of plagiarism through the case was canceled in later years. This instance shows how easy it is to prove plagiarism not only from written work but also from the melody in relation to art and music. Authors can plagiarize written work without knowing and this does not mean that humans are not resourceful.

Higher education plagiarism

The issue of plagiarism has remained a hot debate in universities and institutions of higher learning for a long time. Instructors have always emphasized that students should remain creative and not only depend on what has been provided in class as materials and regardless of this emphasis, students have not stopped being caught on issues related to plagiarism. With the advent of the computer and the internet, even the scarce of ideas are now available to everyone and it does not take much effort to find them on the internet presently. When students find such like materials easily available on the internet, they get lazy to make their own and find an easy way to paraphrase the document and submit it as their own.

Even students who have recorded high levels of creativity have been punished for plagiarism. Institutions have developed means to make students aware of the consequences of plagiarism and what remains weird is that learners still risk and submit plagiarized work with an assumption that instructors would not notice. It is very possible to steal somebody’s work and make it your essay but do so with a lot of attention, being careful to cite your bibliography correctly, and credit the author of the composition. In doing this, one should be very careful not to land himself in accidental plagiarism.

Reasons you should stay away from plagiarism

Legally, stealing ideas is a very serious offense and there are harsh consequences for the same. Choosing an essay way of copy and pasting or paraphrasing somebody else’s work could land you into a negative experience of having your degree annulled, being expelled from college or being charged enormous finances by the courts. Every time you are composing something and have someone’s work as reference, make sure you give credit to the person because not doing this is complete plagiarism. Changing the word structure or flow of sentences might not save the situation because at the end of the day the main ideas in that paper are not your own. Just like institutions, we are focused on doing away with plagiarism and therefore we show you how to rise as a diligent writer and what you do and not do to avoid facing legal penalties for plagiarized work.

We recommend that every time you use somebody’s work, follow it with a quote as an attribute to the person who developed them. Also, after completing your work, be sure to analyze your sources, go through your paper to counter check how you have analyzed your opinion. Before writing your paper, you can also choose to counter check with your professor what to avoid as plagiarism.

No one is immune to the consequences of plagiarism because the punishments are far-reaching. Stature excuses or being ignorant will not save you from legal ramifications after committing plagiarism. Are you attempting to write a project? Learn about plagiarism using this guide and get knowledge on how to avoid the consequences of plagiarism. We provide you with very easy rules to follow and understand. Humans live in search for new knowledge and this could make us susceptible to plagiarism. However, every time you are preparing to write a paper, always remember that only original ideas will be rewarded while stolen ideas will be fairly and strictly punished.