Political plagiarism exposes the need for original content


As far as political scandals go, this one was pretty tame. In fact, the only exposing that took place was that of a lazy speech writer (who may or may not have been the politician himself).

The year was 2010 and Vaughn Ward was a Republican running for congress. His entire campaign lay in opposition to President Barack Obama. So when Ward got caught plagiarizing (almost word-for-word) Obama’s 2004 speech to the Democratic National Convention, the result was rather embarrassing.

I only write about this scandal to illustrate one point: Plagiarism makes you look foolish. Don’t do it.

In today’s content hungry environment, plagiarism may seem like an easy answer to meeting deadlines and feeding the content beast. Writers may plagiarize because they are either too in-eloquent or too lazy to come up with works of their own. Some get away with it, others don’t.

In the world of business, however, you must be aware that copyright infringement can result in more than bad PR; it can land you in court. I once had a woman call me in a near panic. She needed new content for her website fast, before her competitor sued her. Not only had she taken inspiration from the man’s business to start her own, she’d blatantly copied his marketing materials. Fortunately for her, I was able to supply all new, all original website content in a matter of days .

For the record, merely changing a few words within the text you are copying does not protect you from claims of copyright infringement. To call a work your own it must be O-R-I-G-I-N-A-L.

If writing isn’t a talent you possess, outsource the job to a copywriter. As your writer I produce content on a “work made for hire” basis. This means that even though I write it, you get to claim the copyright.

And finally, beware of so-called copywriters who have no respect for copyrights. They offer content writing services at rock bottom prices, but you’ll end up paying for it, if not in dollars than in SEO (search engines reward high quality, original content).


3 Responses to “Political plagiarism exposes the need for original content

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  • hello, thank you for this astonishing information. Therefore, I would like to ask for your permission to add some of this information in my blog. Of course, I will provide a link to your , as a source of my mentioned information.

    • A.L.Steele
      12 years ago

      So long as my content is not duplicated, I’m happy to share.

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