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MaisyS's avatar

Would this count as plagiarism?

Asked by MaisyS (635points) 2 weeks ago

Say I really like the imagery used in a written piece. If I choose to write my own piece and use that imagery, but in a different way, would that be plagiarism?
I mean like, if that piece says something along the lines of “people have salted cheeks going through tough times”, and I write in my piece “I have brackish cheeks”. Or if the piece says “I departed in the morning, bathed in bitter sunlight”, and I write “Dawn brings bitter morning light”.

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8 Answers

Mimishu1995's avatar

No. It’s written form, so everyone will have a different way of interpreting the same scene. As long as you don’t lift the words straight from the original source it’s not plagiarism.

To be honest though, the two examples have nothing to do with the original sources to me.

MaisyS's avatar

@Mimishu1995 thank you so much!

AK's avatar

Technically, it is not plagiarism if you reword a phrase and present it to the public. You can do that without any fear of repercussions. Literature wise, there is a reason why you like a particular phrase or its meaning. It could be beauty of imagination of the original writer (the imagery, as you put it) or maybe it is the poetic flow or it could be the choice of words. The challenge for you would be to capture a similar kind of ‘attraction’ in your reworded sentence, so that, other readers are inspired by you, like you were by the original writer.

flutherother's avatar

What you are doing is paraphrasing or using different words to say the same thing. No one is going to notice in a few sentences but if you were to paraphrase a whole page of text someone will notice and it would be considered plagiarism. You cannot copy someone else’s ideas and pass them off as your own.

dabbler's avatar

“Use that imagery, but in a different way…” How do you use imagery in a different way?
If you are using an image that you don’t own rights to (and isn’t public domain) you’re probably violating a copyright.

MaisyS's avatar

@dabbler I don’t mean using an image. I mean imagery in the literary sense. A certain combination of words. Say you describe (this will be terrible writing because I’m taking an example off the top of my head) a forest and you say “The crackling autumn leaves blanket the ground”. I really like how you express that, so I take inspiration for my piece on my garden and write “Crackling leaves littered the ground, evidence of summer’s departure and the advent of autumn.”

dabbler's avatar

@MaisyS Ah! Then I agree with @Mimishu1995 and others that ” As long as you don’t lift the words straight from the original source it’s not plagiarism” Enjoy!

crazyguy's avatar

Recently I wrote a story based on an idea my daughter had. Before I would share the story with anybody, I got a copyright. I found out the copyright protects only the text, not the idea. So my daughter’s original idea is out there for everybody.

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