Campaign Corner ••

Tuesday, January 09, 2018

Don’t Cut and Paste

Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery; cut-and-paste is not. We were taken aback in 2002 when we noticed someone had posted whole sections of one of our pages verbatim sans credits. Another person had copied one of our pages in 2004 (going well beyond the meaning of the "fair use" doctrine)--though he didn't claim to be the author. What these two cases have in common is that they're both message board postings. Whether it's an on-line forum or a school term paper, the same rules apply.

Ironically, what makes the Web so easy to plagiarize also makes detection relatively straightforward. Always quick to look for a silver lining, we believe a grassroots campaign is in order here. We encourage all content providers to place a simple reminder on your Web sites. Think of it as a public service announcement like those anti-drunk driving ads. You can copy our message below or use your own words; you may include a link to this page if you like ( Here is our PSA exactly as it appears on some of our pages.

Cool Web Surfers Don't Cut and Paste

Would you like to share this Web page with friends? Don't cut and paste. Provide a Web link to this page or refer to its Web address. We invite all content providers to join our “Don't Cut and Paste” campaign.

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