Copyright and plagiarism
There are some very important ethical considerations
associated with the use of information. In most cases the work of other
people is rightfully their intellectual property and it must be
acknowledged by those who rely heavily on it or reproduce it. Two of
the most important considerations are copyright issues, and the care
needed to avoid plagiarism.
Copyright is the legal protection of copyright owners
(usually authors or artists) against the unauthorised copying of their
work. Copyright legislation covers all types of intellectual property
in all types of medium, i.e. print or electronic.
- Written material such as journal
articles, novels, poems, song lyrics and reports.
- Artistic works such as paintings,
drawings, cartoons, sculpture, craft work, photographs, maps and plans.
- Musical works.
- Dramatic works such as plays and
- Computer programs.
- Compilations such as anthologies,
directories and databases.
- Cinematograph films such as feature
films, television programs and commercials.
- Sound recordings such as recorded
music or a recorded lecture.
(Source: Australian Copyright Council, June 2009 "Researchers & students" Accessed: 9/9/09).
Plagiarism is the presentation of the work of another
without acknowledgement. Students may use information and ideas
expressed by others but this use must be identified by appropriate
Examples of Plagiarism
In general, unless the original work is acknowledged
appropriately (i.e. referenced), plagiarism may include:
(a) copying all or part of a piece of work
(b) summarising a piece of work
(c) paraphrasing a piece of work