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Alive and Well - UnfortunatelyCopying written materials or intellectual property is something practically everyone runs into while in school. It occurs at all stages of formal education. Elementary, Junior High School (Middle School), High School.... all the way through to Junior Colleges and Universities.
At Junior College, University and Graduate School levels... plagiarism is a serious offense that is not taken lightly by those in authority. Students caught in the act of stealing intellectual property are harshly censured... which can result in expulsion.
Plagiarizing the InternetMany Universities and Collegiate Systems contract with firms that automatically spider the internet... looking for evidence of plagiarism.
Companies like Copyscape exist to help website owners and other developers of Intellectual Property to protect their "written wares."
Plagiarized DentistryUnfortunately, we have been witness to several doctors, literally around the world, being involved in active theft of material. Although some of the dentists, orthodontists and other specialists monitor this kind of theft.... most do not.
In the United States, we have seen doctors (or their website developers) blatantly copy entire pages... even an entire website... complete with photography... to promote their own practice. The individual doctors or their website developers are usually dealt with privately.
Private arbitrations never become known to the general public.
Plagiarism Identity ChangesPerhaps equally bad is the incidence of "concept theft." This type of activity is the copying and complete rewriting of the material. Different words, different sentence structures, paragraphs, etc. Photos are changed.
The net effect of this type of activity is the promotion of "good communication" about a subject or subject matter that a doctor or website developer doesn't otherwise know how to communicate.
One Florida doctor we know of caught the developer of a dental directory in Canada copying and rewriting his material. Certain proprietary techniques, that could have been known only by the doctor, were used in a glossary .... which was designed to make this Canadian dental directory omniscient in dentistry.
Caveat EmptorThe internet is a remarkable resource for finding and gathering information. As with the Photography Alert material, it would not be a waste of time to verify that what is written accurately reflects what can be demonstrated or easily documented.