How to Avoid Plagiarism: Essential Tips

Today, the Internet is filled with people looking to earn some money by becoming freelance writers. While this has been a good circumstance for many, it has also shed some light on one of the challenges being faced by writers these days – plagiarism. Simply put, plagiarism is stealing someone else’s written work or part of it and claiming it as one’s own. In essence, it is taking advantage of someone’s ideas without giving credit to the person who came up with it. It is outright intellectual theft, and it’s not good for business. Besides, you wouldn’t want someone else stealing your work and gaining credit for it. While others may knowingly do this in an attempt to earn quick money, others may not be aware they are actually committing plagiarism. If you are a writer, you ought to protect yourself at all costs. Here’s how you can avoid committing plagiarism:

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First, manage time wisely. Many people resort to plagiarism because they lack time to research and think of their own words. When you are researching, learn the art of paraphrasing. This means using your own words to communicate what a passage is saying. Also, be sure you take references seriously. If you get a piece of information from a website, be sure to take note of the site and if possible, include it as reference in your material. If you are going to use a line or two, word after word, you will need quotation marks. Quoting means someone else said it, not you. If you are omitting, you can use ellipses for the parts you are not including. For instance, “This the age of cynicism… so we must go on.” Finally, use online programs to check for plagiarism. The most common ones are PlagiarismDetect and Copyscape.