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Is the word rewriting the new plagiarism?

davidahlberg
Active Member
David A Member Since: Feb 24, 2017
1 of 20
I have a question.

And I would love multiple people that chime in with their opinions on this. If you come across a job where they simply want to give you articles and then have you rewrite them differently saying they're going to be checked on copyscape, isn't that considered plagiarism committed by the freelancer from the original article? And regardless if copyscape is used or not because if we didn't rewrite them they would definitely show up on copyscape. Are these clients simply unable to write their own articles so they want somebody else to plagiarize articles for them and then they sign their name to the article? I'm confused. I'm not really confused it's kind of black and white but is this allowed legally and ethically?
petra_r
Community Guru
Petra R Member Since: Aug 3, 2011
2 of 20

@David A wrote:
 If you come across a job where they simply want to give you articles and then have you rewrite them differently saying they're going to be checked on copyscape, isn't that considered plagiarism committed by the freelancer from the original article?

 Not necessarily. It depends on who owns the original. Lots of clients have many websites, and want to chuck their own articles at all of them, but "rewritten!"

 

Those jobs are not worth looking at, generally, as they pay next to nothing anyway.

boyer_kurt
Active Member
Kurt B Member Since: Jun 10, 2017
3 of 20

I get paid fairly for "rewriting" on blogs, but the clients' sites re-package news and information for their market. Suppose there's a breaking story about a UFO and a 2,000 word article from an astronomer. The blogger wants to post the story in a "news article" format but in 200 words. So you draw from the long article and maybe copy and paste weird technical stuff or difficult names etc. Sometimes I put the whole source article in Wordpress and space it down, then combine writing free-hand with judicious pasting. 

 

It's easy to look clumsy or incomplete condensing 10 words into 1. It's a skill good blog owners understand they have to pay for, so anyone offering $5 an hour is a chiseler for sure. 

 

Regretfully a lot of UW job posters don't really care about quality. They want words to fill in space on their webpages & want them written (or edited from source) as quickly & cheaply as possible. 

davidahlberg
Active Member
David A Member Since: Feb 24, 2017
4 of 20
That's true I didn't think about that it could be their own article from the past. And totally, they don't pay anything this particular one wanted to pay $3.50 for each 500 word article... Now I have seen a lot of these actually and they're really demanding too in the wording. They want this and they want this and they want something else. I'm thinking well if you want to really get somebody to do it this cheap you should word your your job a little more sweet. Basically they're asking for Simon and Schuster features and they're paying nothing. Reality check! I could see them being useful for experience and portfolio filler however, if you have the time and sense of humor.
colettelewis
Community Guru
Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
5 of 20

Check out just about any general subject on the internet - for example - weight loss, and you will find hundreds, if not thousands of cloned articles. Eventually any writer in this area will run out of synonyms (and passion Smiley Happy). I can't imagine anything more boring, or more soul-destroying than rewriting (or spinning) - unless in an editorial sense, when a rewritten sentence (or even paragraph) would look better than the original.

datasciencewonk
Community Guru
Kat C Member Since: Jul 11, 2016
6 of 20

Personally, as a writer, I don't even give those jobs a second glance. 

 

And, recently, the feverish rush to invite me privately for "academic" writing jobs (read: write their school research paper for them) has, thankfully, died off. 

 

Are you asking to try and make sense of this basic human psychology?

 

Or are you asking because you're considering taking these kinds of jobs?

 

 

lysis10
Community Guru
Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
7 of 20

I tell them I write my own and it's going to cost them the same (some people use this stupid excuse to get writing for cheap). But really, I wouldnt' take something like this because A) this is just some junk client and my costs are too high for him and B) he's already shown that he cares more about "uniqueness" than quality.

 

As one of my esteemed colleagues seo101 used to say "unique doesn't mean useful."

datasciencewonk
Community Guru
Kat C Member Since: Jul 11, 2016
8 of 20

@Jennifer M wrote:

I tell them I write my own and it's going to cost them the same (some people use this stupid excuse to get writing for cheap). But really, I wouldnt' take something like this because A) this is just some junk client and my costs are too high for him and B) he's already shown that he cares more about "uniqueness" than quality.

 

As one of my esteemed colleagues seo101 used to say "unique doesn't mean useful."


Yep. 

 

Superficial conflation between "relevant" and "unique."

 

 

davidahlberg
Active Member
David A Member Since: Feb 24, 2017
9 of 20
For the psychology and simple "Are you serious?" factor of some people. I wouldn't waste my time with this.
davidahlberg
Active Member
David A Member Since: Feb 24, 2017
10 of 20
Yep.
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