Opinion

Blog and Photograph Plagiarism

The issue, at least back in India, is getting out of hand. Though they call themselves professionals and operate under the highest ethical standards, they let things slip up and don’t even bother acknowledging or apologizing for it. I am talking about newspapers and the leading ones at that. There have been a number of instances in the past year or so.

With Web 2.0 and the ease of access to information, people take things for granted. Here in my university and other such institutions, plagiarism is dealt with serious consequences and academic integrity of highest standards is expected from every student. And when it comes to newspapers and big brand names doing the same, it is quite pathetic. I am not sure if they believe they are impervious and can get away with it, or they are simply not aware. Something that indicates serious lack of professionalism.

Sudipta passed on this message to spread the awareness of such petty thefts. I had read about Twilight Fairy’s experience and recently, that of Shrinidhi. The very first instance and one that is much closer home, is that of Gapp and his photo being published in a youth run newspaper. But ultimately, it turned out to be a goof up by our very own prankster. Gapp believed that the online version of the newspaper reflected what appears in the print copy. But his picture had appeared only in the online version and his picture had a creative commons license, which meant, anyone could have (re)used it online! Gapp turned out to be the joker here, and you can read about the hilarious story, here, here and here. In that order.

So, the key here is awareness. We need to read between the lines on what is right, what is wrong, and act accordingly. Spread the word. Some of them think they can walk away unscathed and they need a goal kick on their back side.

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15 thoughts on “Blog and Photograph Plagiarism

  1. Opps
    i never knew about this!!!

    in end of the day they are making money from our online pics!
    strange really strange

    but yeah they must give credit! atleast a sentence in the post!
    Photograph contributed from xyz.blogspot.com or name!

    Adi: Yeah, as simple as that!

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  2. same culprit 2 times eh?? interesting, especially cos the editor is actually defending the practise.. they probably do it in the knowledge that no one is going to have the resources or vettiness to take them to task in a judiciary that is inefficient.. only possibility for redemption is an online smear campaign.. equally effortless.

    Adi: Exactly. They probably think no one would care for a simple picture flicked online!

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  3. hey !!!
    plagiarism and indians go hand in hand.
    Its more like tirupathi and ladooo ;)

    But in a corporate world it should be sued for sure, it just shows lack of creative minds there and pure slothfulness. In the case of academia its really hard to talk anything about it, you should know why.. having studied here :P

    Adi: Yeah yeah! :P

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  4. someone whose ‘kula daivam’ is Capt.Jack Sparrow has no right to comment here. But then, wat the hell…

    Some ppl go hyper when their pictures are published and like to cuss newspapaers!

    I’ll be neutral and say that the papers and online media must atleast put a line saying images courtesy dash dash.

    Even then if bloggers have probs then they can go and dip their faces in horse shit! Y upload a pic onto the internet if u dont want anyone to see it!

    I see so many pics of ppl drunk or sloshed, If i write a post that needs a similar pic, I will use it and hotlink to them. Now I dont claim responsibility for the image nor can i claim responsibility for that image now gettin loads of page views and traffic!

    c’mon let teh flame wars begin!

    Adi: I’ve seen a picture of Sonam Kapoor in a party. Wanna write a post on that? :P

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  5. Well it was us indians who came up with the whole sharing is caring concept. But I suspect this is taking it a tad too far…

    Adi: Lol, edhayume oyunga purinjuka mattanga. All ara gorai cases!

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  6. I think all pictures taken from elsewhere has to be given credit. This happens a lot with food bloggers, Adi. And these are women who slog to cook interesting food, take beautiful pictures and write their blog posts around them. So many women have become better and photography thanks to their food blogging hobby. This discourages all those women coming out to do something on their own.

    Major corporations like Yahoo! and TOI have done it. I do not blame small-timers at all. But its time we stop this, and give credit to the those who deserve it!

    Adi: Yeah, like maxu says, maybe people who care shouldn’t upload but then there is absolutely nothing wrong if you expect credit. It’s after all your creative work, you upload it or not.

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  7. I know I am sidetracking but

    “Here in my university and other such institutions, plagiarism is dealt with serious consequences and academic integrity of highest standards is expected from every student”

    Academic integrity? You gotto be kidding me. Are you trying to tell me

    A. You dont look at old question papers

    B. Take home exams you dont check answers?

    a.

    Adi: Why is looking at old question papers against academic integrity? I have taken only one take home exam and that too wasn’t a traditional take home. And I did NOT cross check answers with anyone. It was first semester and a bunch of us were too scared to do it.

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  8. I second Nandini’s comment. Food bloggers have faced it quite a few times and it hasn’t been easy dealing with the wrong doers. Even if they fail to ask permission before using another person’s work, it must and should be acknowledged. These guys pay for getting the content and flicking it off another site is a cheap alternative to them. The least they can do then is to give credit where its due. The fact that the photographs/text are online does not make them free for all.
    Blogs are still a new concept and the rules and regulations are as murky as they can get, spreading the word is the only solution for now!

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  9. Integrity seems to be quite an unknown term in our country, and sadly so. Stealing content straight off websites, books have never been dealt with seriously – the least someone can do is cite a source. I agree.

    P.S: did you see Saroja? LOL. Yaarun judgement night mentionae pannalela.

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  10. U bet plaigiarism is rampant! Naansense…some girl stole my testimonial to a friend and she put it up as her ‘about me’. I don’t even know her. Bloody Hell! It is outrageous, I tell you! I am going to move court, claiming infringement of intellectual rights!

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