This is not something I usually write about. Not at all. I try to keep things nice and positive. And I also acknowledge the fact that the majority of readers of book related blogs already know about this, since most of them are bloggers themselves. But since I feel like this is something that has been haunting me the whole day, I am going to write something about it.
Today there has been posts about plagiarism in Twitter and some book related blogs I read. A blogger who has a pretty "high status" in the "blogging world" has been accused of plagiarism. There is no need to name this blogger, this is not a post to blame her or ridicule her. If you are curious, you will find information to feed your curiosity.
This blogger has spoken about plagiarism before. She is highly acknowledged by publishers and authors. The amount of review books she gets is enormous. I know there is lot of jealousy in the book blogger world; some bloggers have better connections, meaning that they have chances to read more recent pieces before their actual publishing. I remember when I started blogging and my sole purpose was to get review copies of novels. But then I realized that blogging is about so much more. And actually when I started to get requests for review copies, I felt really bad for saying no, even though I knew I would not have time to review the books on time. So then I just stopped blogging for a while. This "stopping" has happened a lot, and I am sorry for it. But if I feel like I have nothing to write about at the moment, I don't write at all. I want to write something that is my own, not something that I have to take from somewhere else.
These days, technology runs the world, do we want it or not. Anything you write on the Internet with your own name can be found. This post will exist in the huge cloud probably 'til the day the Internet crashes or something as big as that happens. So what you write with your own name really matters. Most of you probably already know this, but I am a university student. My life at the moment centers around essays and research. So I am very aware of the consequences of plagiarism. For me, the first consequence would be not passing. But I think what would hurt me more would be the embarrassment I would feel at the moment of getting caught. Is copying someone to sound "better" worth all that?
We are only humans, we cannot be good at everything. So if you are writing about something you don't know about, admit it. Do research and give credit to the ones who have given you the information. Sounding "smart" for a moment cannot be worth all the ridicule and shame you will feel if you get caught.
Of course it is highly possible that you completely agree about something with someone else. But when you are forming your opinion, even if it is written just the way you would say it by someone else, you have use your own words. Or if you cannot put it any better, give credit to this other person; acknowledge the fact that it was someone else who said like this. It wasn't you! That way you can show someone who has worked hard that their work is appreciated and acknowledged.
I know this became a complete rant about the topic and from outside the topic. I just felt like I needed to write something, contribute something to this discussion. I know I haven't been very active in the past couple of months, university is taking the toll on my time, but the summer is coming which means A LOT more reading for me. So stay tuned!