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Not citing at all, whether quoting, paraphrasing, or summarizing

Original text

Modern English, especially written English, is full of bad habits which spread by imitation and which can be avoided if one is willing to take the necessary trouble. If one gets rid of these habits one can think more clearly, and to think clearly is a necessary first step towards political regeneration: so that the fight against bad English is not frivolous and is not the exclusive concern of professional writers. (from Collected Essays: George Orwell, 1961, p. 353)

Example

Plagiarized text

People using the English language need a strong wake-up call, because the very way we form and govern societies is entwined in the way we formulate words about them. We need to use words in a way that will help us to think clearly, because to think clearly is a necessary first step towards political regeneration - and political regeneration is obviously something we are in great need of right now.

Comment on plagiarized text - Here the writer is including Orwell’s phrase, “to think clearly is a necessary first step towards political regeneration,and indeed, Orwell’s very term, “political regeneration,” without citing the source in any way. This is plagiarism because a reader is not given reason to suspect that any of the words or ideas in this phrase actually belong to anyone other than the writer.

Example

Plagiarized text

Written English, when used poorly, can lead to inexact thinking, which in turn can lead to an inability to revitalize political thought. As such, making a conscious effort to use English well becomes the responsibility not only of authors but of all citizens.

Comment on plagiarized text - Here the writer has managed to summarize Orwell’s passage using different words and phrasing, but as the source is not cited, what the writer has created is still plagiarism: A reader would not know that these are not the writer’s original thoughts, but rather, Orwell’s.

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