Another Reason For Authors To Fear Google Book Search: It Will Reveal Plenty Of Plagiarists
from the ah,-technology-at-work dept
While some book authors and publishers have come to embrace Google's book search, many are still fighting it. While the reason, for many, is fear that their own copyrights are violated in not being compensated by Google for the project, perhaps others are worried about a different copyright infringement issue. Paul Collins at Slate is predicting that Google's book search will help turn up plenty of plagiarists, including (he expects) some well known authors. He comes to this conclusion after a science writer was accused of plagiarism recently, and immediately accused his accuser of simply putting every sentence in his book into Google and finding some close matches. Collins, however, also notes that plagiarism has a long history among book authors, pointing out that Herman Melville apparently plagiarized sections of other books for his famous novel, Moby Dick. He also points to a friend who accidentally discovered a plagiarized passage using Google's book search... and then discovered that the "original" author of the piece he was looking for had plagiarized texts himself. We recently wondered why plagiarists often seemed so blatant in copying content that was easily findable online -- but just imagine how many others may have copied from various books assuming the same searching capabilities would never be present to call out their misdeeds? Once again, though, perhaps it will renew the debate over whether or not plagiarism is always such a bad thing.