An interesting case of plagiarism

The Purloined Bibliography:

My training in medieval history had acquainted me with the practice of identifying dependencies among manuscripts by tracing the repetition of errors. By analogy, I thought, if there were additional idiosyncratic errors on my Web site that also appeared in the book, each instance would be a discrete piece of evidence showing that the volume had lifted material from my work.
I found myself in the unusual position of hoping that I had made more mistakes. Could I find more evidence than just two bizarrely placed asterisks?


3 responses to “An interesting case of plagiarism

  1. Fascinating. A couple years ago I compiled a list of snakes of a country for a Wikipedia article. I later found the list reproduced on that country’s biodiversity management agency’s website. Since I had based it on a single book, and the webpage credited the same source, how do I know that they copied the list from Wikipedia (without acknowledgement)? Because of the way the list was formatted. The formatting was reproduced exactly.

  2. “I found myself in the unusual position of hoping that I had made more mistakes.”
    We’ve suffered this in the field of genealogy. Some people have added false information, so that if/when their work is plagiarized, they’ll recognize it.

  3. Interesing. However, I think he made a mistake in not pointing out the intellectual laziness (to put the best face on it) of the authors of the book.