After reading the farsical "explanation" from Dowd, the first logical conclusion is that Maureen Dowd plagiarized. But more telling, I think, is her refusal to take responsibility for copying a paragraph from Josh Marshall and then calling it her own. Instead, she conjures up a completely lame falsehood to cover the plagiarism. It strikes me that Dowd’s behavior after committing plagiarism provides the real lesson: too many of those charged with keeping our politicians honest, open and transparent have none of these qualities in their own work. And when caught, whether it be for being complete tools of unnamed government officials, plagiarism, or any number of other unethical behaviors, they do the exact same things our government officials do–they lie, cover-up, and otherwise evade responsibility in any way possible.
Plagiarism, as defined in the 1995 Random House Compact Unabridged Dictionary, is the "use or close imitation of the language and thoughts of another author and the representation of them as one’s own original work." Within academia, plagiarism by students, professors, or researchers is considered academic dishonesty or academic fraud and offenders are subject to academic censure, up to and including expulsion. In journalism, plagiarism is considered a breach of journalistic ethics, and reporters caught plagiarizing typically face disciplinary measures ranging from suspension to termination. Some individuals caught plagiarizing in academic or journalistic contexts claim that they plagiarized unintentionally, by failing to include quotations or give the appropriate citation. While plagiarism in scholarship and journalism has a centuries-old history, the development of the Internet, where articles appear as electronic text, has made the physical act of copying the work of others much easier, simply by copying and pasting text from one web page to another.
Plagiarism is not copyright infringement. While both terms may apply to a particular act, they are different transgressions. Copyright infringement is a violation of the rights of a copyright holder, when material protected by copyright is used without consent. On the other hand, plagiarism is concerned with the unearned increment to the plagiarizing author’s reputation that is achieved through false claims of authorship.
The above is not my writing, but rather was copied from Wikipedia. One can follow the link above, Ms. Dowd, and read the original text.
There, isn’t that easy?