2018.03.06 Editor: J.T.
Plagiarism and its perception in publishing
Plagiarism is a topic that raises dread in a journal editor and often shock and embarrassment in an author. Plagiarism is one of the very first things a journal editor and publisher will assess. Sophisticated software quickly scans submitted manuscripts and identifies any overlap with other published texts and online sources. Ultimately, a percentage of similarity is produced, and from this percentage alone the journal editor can decide whether to reject a paper.
Plagiarism comes in many forms, from directly copying or paraphrasing short pieces of text to copying ideas and data and taking them as your own. Authors are often shocked to learn they have issues with plagiarism, as on the most part, plagiarism is unintentional. This is because many non-native speakers feel more confident copying or paraphrasing text from others to ensure that they have got the grammar and wording correct. However, copying or adjusting phrases from different sources will raise the plagiarism alarm bells and doubts over the originality and authenticity of your data with that journal for years to come.
The results of the plagiarism check determine the first impression of your article with the journal. Enlist the help of a colleague, friend or language editor (such as those at NAI) who can help you write your own points and views in your own words and avoid immediate rejection based on plagiarism.