Some recent, behind-the-scenes issues have brought to light that we have been remiss in having a policy that addresses pretty much one of the dirtiest words in writing: Plagiarism. For those that have never heard this word before, to plagiarise is to steal verbatim or copy another writer’s language, plot, dialogue and then try to pass it off as their own work. Oftentimes I have seen in other fandoms writers who take works from fandoms far removed from the one they currently dwell in, in the hope no one notices. Almost always someone notices. I have had friends who have had whole slabs of their work thrown into the middle of someone else’s story and the discrepancy of language and style will make it obvious that a theft has occurred. What is less easy to prove but which leaves a rather bitter, unsettled taste on the tongue is when someone repetitively copies plot points, both major and minor within the story itself, and changes it up just enough to make it look like it was new. As I said, this is harder to prove.
Using fandom tropes is not plagiarism. Writing a story on the same event/knowledge/information that is available at large to the public, is not plagiarism. In those cases, it is plagiarism only if the words used are identical to another writer.
This site in no way condones the use of plagiarism. If you suspect this might be going onif you are reading a story and it reminds you too closely of another story you’ve read—please report it. Oftentimes it can be an accident, and sometimes we pick up ideas from reading a multitude of fic and I’ve known writers who don’t read others expressly for this reason, fear of their creativity being tainted by others. All concerns will be dealt with seriously and with compassion and understanding—to a point. If the claim is proven, then the thief will automatically be banned from the site and the story deleted. I personally hold plagiarists to be utterly unworthy of support and this site won’t offer it. However, that does not mean we are so hard line that we will confront and ban members without strong proof. So, if you do make this claim, as incredibly serious as it is, please make sure you have comparative text to back you up. We will come to the table fully open to listen but neither FM or myself have the time to do your investigation for you.
To reiterate, what to do if you catch a plagiarist:
- Contact one of the Admins.
- Ensure you include links to both works, specifically the chapters or text you wish to have clarified.
- Outline with specific examples what you believe has been stolen: list ideas and plot points, or highlight copied text from both fics.
If anyone has any questions about this, please direct your enquiries to myself or Fairiesmasquerade.
--Peta2 on December 10, 2014 9:15pm 4 Comments