The things you find

There’s increasing interest in having academic librarians cover plagiarism in their BI sessions. I’ve been preparing some material for a class and came across this horrific account. A newly minted PhD was contacted by a PhD student from another institution. They were researching a similar topic and she kindly sent him a copy of her dissertation. Understand this happens a lot. For example, students are trying to find an abstract that was in a conference proceeding that neither the librarian nor they can locate–they may contact the author(s) for a reprint. Anyhow, she comes to discover that not only hasn’t this guy cited her in his dissertation, but he’s stolen almost all of her work whole cloth and claimed it as his own. He lost his degree, his reputation, and his new job. Really, he came off easy, in my not so humble opinion.

This is not a new story, of course, but it was new to me. I haven’t had much call to focus on plagiarism until now; I’m also looking up things on fabrication/falsification of data. That just scares the daylights out of me.

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