"Only 10% can be plagiarized"

Plagiarism makes me crazy. I hate it. As a writer, it hits particularly close to home because I can't fathom the idea of someone taking my stuff and using it as their own. You could call it a pet peeve of mine, but that would be an understatement.

So, you can imagine that when a college-aged person approached me last night at the reference desk and asked, "Is there a way to check how much of a paper is plagiarized? The paper can only be 10% plagiarized." At the utterance of that last statement, my brain filter totally stopped working and I blurted, "No part of the paper can be plagiarized. If it's cited correctly, it's not plagiarism." A few other choice words rolled through my head, but the filter kicked back on.

Deer in headlights look appeared on both of our faces.

What the person meant was basically that they were jamming their paper full of direct quotes from other people work and needed to know what percent of it was actually her own. I could never be a professor based solely on this interaction. I'd be failing people left and right. I hate laziness and I hate plagiarism. Basically, I hate the writing of practically every incoming freshman ever.

I gave her a couple of plagiarism checkers online while thinking that she had already plagiarized too much. Disgusting.

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