Paraphrasing is one of the common elements of writing good content. So, does it count as plagiarism?
Content is king, as said by Bill Gates over 26 years ago. It’s proven right today in every aspect, as 60% of marketers focus on creating at least one piece of content every day. However, creating good quality content is a challenge in Data Science Bootcamp, and that’s when a lot of writers employ paraphrasing tools.
But, does the paraphrasing tool commit plagiarism by rephrasing another author’s content? Moreover, what are the ground rules for using such a tool? And, how does it affect students or academic writers besides SEO writers?
Let’s find the answer to all of these.
Plagiarism is when a person copies another author’s work and claims that it is their own. This can be done in many different ways, including:
- Copying words from a source and putting them into the text without giving credit to the original author
- Copying ideas from a source without giving credit to the original author
- Presenting an idea as if it was your own but not giving credit to the original author
- Using someone else’s work without permission and claiming that you created it
While there are various types of plagiarism, which we’ll be discussing in a bit, all of them are equally unethical and wrong. Whether in an academic setting or a professional one, this is a practice that is frowned upon.
The cases caught with plagiarism are usually served with severe penalties, such as expulsion from the academies or getting fired from a job. However, the harms of plagiarism can exceed far beyond that, and some cases include:
- Writer’s lost credibility
- Reduction of academic grades
- Demotion or relegation in a professional setting (getting fired in worst-case scenarios)
- Brand’s tarnished reputation
These are some of the most common pitfalls of plagiarism for any writer.
4 Main Plagiarism Types
Plagiarism is a problem, and make no mistake, the factors mentioned above can also count in on accidental or unintentional plagiarism. That’s why it’s important to understand the four major types of plagiarism, which are:
- Mosaic Plagiarism
Mosaic plagiarism is a term that has been coined by the writer and researcher Dr. Rebecca Moore Howard. It is a form of plagiarism where an article or book is constructed from multiple sources without attributing them to the original author.
Since it’s hard to detect, it’s also considered the most unethical type. The construction of mosaic plagiarism can be done in one of three ways:
- The author takes passages from different sources, pastes them together, and rewrites them to create their own work
- The author copies and pastes passages into a word processor document, create a new title for the document, and publishes it under his or her name as if it were original content
- The author copy-pastes passages from different sources into a word processor document and publishes it under his or her name
- Direct Plagiarism
Some people copy content from other sources and then publish it as their own. This is called “direct plagiarism.” Direct plagiarism is a serious offense that can result in a legal action but harms the original author’s reputation. It can also lead to a loss of trust from readers, which is an important part of marketing for any business.
- Accidental Plagiarism
Accidental plagiarism is a common problem that many writers face without even intending to duplicate content. It is possible to accidentally plagiarize even without meaning to do so. How is that? For instance, by forgetting to cite a source or by using an online tool that automatically generates content.
- Source-Based Plagiarism
Source-based plagiarism is a form of plagiarism that occurs when a writer fails to cite the source of their work. Or if they cite a source that doesn’t exist. In order to avoid this type of plagiarism, it is important for writers to be aware of the potential pitfalls and to use reliable sources.
What Is A Paraphrasing Tool? How Does it Work?
A paraphrasing tool is a computer program that automatically paraphrases text. The program analyzes the original text and replaces words with synonyms to generate a new text. It’s based on AI algorithms that allow users to conduct these actions within seconds.
If you were, to sum up how a paraphrasing tool works, then it’d look like this:
- NLP reads the content and converts it for the machine
- AI scans and analyzes the text
- Then AI picks the best synonyms and alternative terms
- The tool replaces said terms with picked synonyms
- All this occurs within a mere seconds
Now, as opposed to manually rephrasing, a paraphrasing tool does it quickly and conveniently. That’s why this type of software is often used by:
- Bloggers who want to generate more content very quickly
- SEO specialists who want to improve the quality of their articles
- People/writers who need assistance with their writing skills
Since it’s also commonly available today, it’s becoming more and more popular within writing communities of all kinds around the globe.
Does Paraphrasing With A Tool Count As Plagiarism?
The simple answer is no, it’s not plagiarism if you do it right. However, if you do it wrong, then a lot can go left and cause plagiarism in your text. In order to avoid that, it’s imperative that you focus on writing original text with the assistance of a paraphrasing tool.
So, what are the pillars of using paraphrasers without committing to plagiarism? Here are three main things you need:
- The Intention Should Be Right
The first thing that counts as plagiarism is the intention. If the writer intended to reuse another author’s work to save time or effort without giving them their due credit, then it’s plagiarism. Granted, plagiarism can be unintentional too.
However, plagiarism’s most unethical shape is the one where it’s intended to be that way. Therefore, the writer should always use a paraphrasing tool to avoid plagiarism, not cause it.
- Paraphrasing Should Be Thorough
One of the most common problems writers face when paraphrasing is the lack of it. In other words, not paraphrasing thoroughly is what commonly causes plagiarism. How could they avoid that? By paraphrasing all the way through.
If your content remains the same as the original one, then plagiarism will remain. That’s why, to avoid it effectively, it’s imperative to use a tool that thoroughly rewrites the original text and avoids any similarities with the original.
- The Citation Should Be There
The final nail is to cite the original author after paraphrasing. Remember, plagiarism is caused by not giving the original writer their due credit. Therefore, you need to make sure you cite properly after rephrasing.
So, how do you do that? By hyperlinking the text with the link to the original blog/website. Or, you can use MLA or APA styles to cite the original author.
How Should You Use A Paraphrasing Tool To Avoid Plagiarism?
Using a paraphrasing tool to avoid plagiarism sounds good, but you must ensure you’re doing it properly. So, here’s a four-step procedure you should use to avoid plagiarism every time you use a paraphrasing tool.
- Pick A Paraphraser
The first step is to pick a good paraphrasing tool, and while we’ll be suggesting three such tools later, you need to look for something that offers:
- Various content tones
- At least a 500-word count limit
- The natural tone of rephrased content
- Quick and convenient usage
If a paraphrasing tool has these traits, then go for it.
- Choose A Content Tone
Once you pick a tool, the next step is to paste or upload your content into the tool’s editor. After that, you’ll have to pick a content tone. Most good tools would offer something along the lines of:
While some tools don’t have these options, you shouldn’t worry because such tools know what’s best for your type of text.
- Rewrite Content
The next step is to let the paraphrasing tool rewrite your content. This process takes up a few seconds, depending on the abilities of the tool you pick. However, most capable tools would take around a minute or two to rewrite around 400-500 words.
- Cite The Source
The final step is to avoid plagiarism effectively by citing the source. As mentioned before, you can try various ways of citation, but using the MLA or APA system is the best way to ensure the original author gets their due credit.
3 Recommended Paraphrasing Tools in 2022
Now that the process is out of the way let’s talk about the tools. Bearing in mind all the qualities we mentioned before, we picked the three best paraphrasing tools you can use in 2022. Here they are:
- Paraphrasingtool by Prepostseo
PrePostSEO’s paraphrasing tool is one of the common occurrences in Google search results for such tools. And there’s a good reason behind that, as it’s perhaps the best paraphrasing tool available today.
You cannot ask for more from a paraphrasing tool with a good UI design and paraphrasing capabilities. Because, in theory, this is the complete paraphraser that every writer needs.
- 1000-word limit
- Four content tones
- Supports 17 languages
- Paraphrase Online by Editpad
Editpad is new to the game, but the paraphrasing tool is becoming one of the best available today. Featuring three different content tones and outstanding abilities to paraphrase online your text, it’s one of the best options you have.
On top of that, it can rewrite texts without causing unnatural or robotic tones. Which makes it an ideal companion for any writer.
- 1000+ word limit
- Three content tones
- Various supported languages
- Quick and convenient
Paraphraser.io is another leading name in paraphrasing, as it’s one of the favorites among writers. Why is it used on a wide scale? Because it has all the key ingredients to make a good paraphrasing tool.
From two more-than-suitable content tones to plagiarism removing capabilities, it’s everything a writer needs to avoid plagiarism.
- 500-word limit
- Two content tones (three if premium)
- Supports 13 languages
- Exceedingly quicker than most paraphrasers
Understanding how to use a paraphrasing tool requires you to understand the basics of it. Most of which we’ve covered in this article, as it explains just how you should approach paraphrasing. Therefore, to sum it all up, use a good tool and make sure you cite the original author to avoid plagiarism.