What are the differences between plagiarism and copyright infringement?


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Plagiarism and copyright infringement sound the same to people who don’t have much knowledge about them. In this article, we will tell you all about the key difference between plagiarism and copyright infringement. First of all, let us define both terms in detail (plagiarism and copyright infringement).

What is plagiarism?

Plagiarism is copying and presenting someone’s work as your own. If you are copying content from one or multiple sources and publishing it as your own without proper credits and attributions to deceive the reader or search engine, then it will be called plagiarism. Here the term content/work doesn’t only refer to text but also to words, ideas, visuals, designs, audio, and even video content. If you are using ideas, words, or any other form of content that belongs to another person, you would need to add proper credits to the original author/creator.

If you are providing attributes to the original author, you can avoid plagiarism. But if you are not providing credits, you will be accused of plagiarism and face severe consequences. If you want to know what includes in plagiarism, then you need to read the points we have summarized below:

  • Showing someone’s creative work as your own is included as plagiarism 
  • Using another person’s ideas, words, and sentences without credits is called plagiarism.
  • Not adding quotation marks where needed is also a sign of plagiarism.
  • Adding wrong credits about the source from which you are using data is also known as plagiarism.
  • Spinning words with synonyms and using the same sentences is also plagiarism.

How to detect plagiarism? – Today plagiarism can easily be found with the help of plagiarism checkers. In the past, you could’ve gotten away with plagiarism. Still, today you have to be careful as you can easily be found guilty when your content will be checked with a plagiarism scanner. You can use a plagiarism checker to check plagiarism online

What is copyright infringement?

Copyright infringement is a bit different from plagiarism. It refers to the copying and using of content and the reproduction and distribution on public platforms. In simple words, stealing and publishing work on commercial platforms protected by copyright laws is known as copyright infringement; if you sell any content that doesn’t belong to you without the owner’s permission, you are committing copyright infringement

You should know that all kinds of content published on commercial platforms are protected with copyrights. If you are planning on stealing and using content just because you don’t see any copyright protection signs, you will get yourself into trouble. You must understand that all kinds of content on the web and other commercial platforms like YouTube are protected with copyrights. Their rights belong to their owners. You must never steal content or use it as your creation. Here you should know that copyright infringement cannot be charged against a person using content that has not been licensed yet. Moreover, fair use is also exempted from legal charges. 

Now that you know what plagiarism and copyright infringement are, we would like you to know some of the key differences between these concepts.

Main differences between plagiarism and copyright infringement 

There are a few differences between plagiarism and copyright infringement. We have summarized them for you in this section.

  • First, you must know that copyright infringement occurs when copyrighted material is stolen and used commercially for monetary or other gains. Violating the rights of the creator is known as copyright infringement. In contrast, plagiarism, on the other hand, is the simple use of another person’s ideas and words without giving attributes. 
  • Copyright infringement is the deliberate stealing and representation of work belonging to another person. In contrast, plagiarism is claiming another person’s work as your creation. 
  • A very interesting difference between the two is that copyright infringement only relates to the work protected with copyrights. In contrast, plagiarism relates to the copying of all sorts of creative work; may it be protected by copyrights or not.
  • Copyright infringement is stealing commercially published work, whereas plagiarism concerns ideas. 
  • Another difference between the two is that in plagiarism, there are no legal consequences. Plagiarism is just a breach of moralities and ethics, whereas copyright infringement is stealing of legally protected work and the culprit can easily be accused and threatened with legal actions.

To simplify the difference for you, plagiarism is the use of material that belongs to another creator without credits. In contrast, copyright infringement is the use of material without the permission of the creator. In plagiarism, the permission of the author is irrelevant and in copyright infringement, paying attributes is meaningless, and the culprit would still be accused in a court of law. In the end, we would like you to know that both plagiarism and copyright infringement is wrong and so you need to avoid committing them.

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