Google Prevents Plagiarism

    November 27, 2006

Google Book Search prevents authors from going down in literary history as plagiarists by offering a searchable database of books.

Paul Collins states in his insightful article “Dead Plagiarists Society” that even great authors such as Herman Melville and Edgar Allen Poe plagiarized works of literature, sometimes entirely, to create beloved works of writing.

Plagiarism is undoubtedly the most common concern that any author faces when penning a story or book, and with so many works of literature having already been published it is incredibly simple to unintentionally plagiarize.

Many writers unknowingly plagiarize each day and may have done so in the past due to the fact that there was no tool, which could immediately reference the content of other authors.

Using Google Book Search, and the books on the site that are provided by both publishers and libraries, even the seemingly smallest acts of plagiarism can be discovered and prevented.

Google Book Search allows users to access millions pages worth of literature to find a book matching their desired content, and then link it to other search results.

The results will reveal the number of books, if any, containing the exact phrase or phrases which a user has entered, thereby preventing them from plagiarizing another author’s work.

To further prevent plagiarizing another author’s work, according to the site you can “click on additional search results to see other pages containing your original search term, or try a new search within the book.”

Each book that is searched also contains a listing of libraries where the book may be borrowed and bookstores where it may be purchased.

Also, each search result includes an ‘About this book’ page with basic bibliographic data like title, author, publication date, length and subject, according to Google Book creators.

The Google Book Search site says that for every book, results can be found in the following formats:

Full view: If it is determined that a book is out of copyright, or the publisher or rightsholder has given permission, users will be able to page through the entire book from start to finish repeatedly if needed. If the book is in the public domain, it can also be able download, save and print a PDF version.

Limited preview: If a publisher or author has joined the Google Book Search Partner Program, the pages may be viewed in full. Multiple searches may be conducted in the book, or browse through the available pages.

Snippet view: Users are redirected to the’About this book’ page. If the option to search within the book is chosen, for each search term Google will display up to three snippets of text from the book, and will be shown in context.

Utilization of the search engine could help prevent occurrences of plagiarism in the future, and could possibly help discover past plagiarism by famous authors.

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Autmn Davis is a staff writer for WebProNews covering ebusiness and technology.