Help with plagiarism/copyright

Help with plagiarism/copyright


Hello, for some issues i have copy+paste codes from websites, but i cited the website of original code.

I do:

/* Code from */


This is plagiarism?


Its not plagiarism, but it is cheating… cheating yourself. While its not illegal or necessarily against the rules, the first question you need to ask is why am I just copy and pasting? If you speed through the challenges without actually trying to solve it by yourself, you basically prove that you are good at finding other people’s answers and clicking a submit button. Everyone looks at other’s work to get ideas, but you should do more than just copy and pasting. The problems are there to make you learn not copy others works. Try to solve it yourself before just copying other’s work.


At the VERY LEAST, look at it and then see if you can type it out yourself from memory once you understand the code. Or ‘paraphrase’ the code and put it in another (simpler) way for readability. Otherwise yeah ^^^, just cheating yourself.


When Im super stuck and search for answers, I sloooooowly scroll down the page til I see the first line or two of code so that I dont accidentally see the whole thing, and most times I’ll catch something that gives me the a-ha I need to look back at my code. Thats last resort though to look up the code for the lesson.

First I just try to find a solution to what it is Im trying to do instead of a solution to the problem itself…so I first hit up W3C or Mozilla…and just pour through whatever I think Im supposed to be doing to figure it out. I keep going back to one particular problem that is kicking my butt but I get the feeling shouldnt be so hard to figure out (the start each work in a sentence with a capital letter one) All the stuff I keep finding while trying to figure that one out has helped me figure out other challenges, but no dice…yet. I have the feeling Im way over complicating the answer… lol

But yeah, I agree…copying the answers doesnt actually help you learn anything. This isnt like a school environment where its for the benefit of a teacher that you turn in something, its for your own benefit that you learn it.


That depends how you defined plagiarism and copyright.
The system we live in did a good job of convincing us that plagiarism and copyright is wrong.

Let’s get the plagiarism issue first.
If you actually stop think about how we learn, you’ll realize that you cannot avoid plagiarism and copyright. Is quite ironic. The day we learn to read, we are plagiarizing someone else’s invention of language. When we learn math, we are learning from our ancestor and using “THEIR” formulas and “THEIR” genius.

We learn to speak, we are plagiarizing our parent’s behavior and tones.
To say that plagiarism is wrong shows the lack of understanding of what plagiarism really is.

Let’s say this out loud and see if it makes sense to you.
“To learn coding, I have to look at other people’s sample code, but I cannot look at people’s code because is plagiarism.”

This means that you can’t write a hello world app EVER!

However, what IS plagiarism is when you took someone’s work that clearly is beyond your ability to replicate and you say it is yours. For instance, I cannot say I made jQuery, because that is beyond my ability. But I can say, I made a product that provides the same feature as jQuery, because I used my own abilities.

Copyright Issues
This is a whole load of issue that most people don’t realize. People actually copyright each others work on a daily basis. Any time we try to make something along the lines of “standard” we are actually copyrighting something.

When you are having a conversation and you have this amazing idea. You tell that idea to a techie friend, and they say to you “It is already been done before”. You unknowingly copyrighted a partial of someone else’s work.

When we look at video games, we see repeated features such as “RPG level system”, "Virtual Economy (Money, Gils, etc), Weapons, Armor, etc.

Anytime you have an idea, we can be certain that you are stepping on someone else’s toe. Because there is no such thing as original ideas anymore.

What IS copyright is when you have a product or work that is a twin identical and say it is yours.
Identical meaning, same words, same RGB values, same Title, same spacing in the codes. For instance, I cannot say that I made jQuery even if I typed out every line, because that is someone else’s finish product. I cannot reproduce Mona Lisa and say I am the original author, that’s Di Vinci’s work.

To sum this all up
Plagiarism prevents people from claiming credit for the effort of the author.
Copyright prevents people from claiming credit of a finished product.

The rule of thumb here is:
1/ Don’t tell people you can do something, when you clearly cannot.
2/ Don’t attempt to recreate identical work and claim that it is yours.

If plagiarism and copyright is fully enforced upon everyone that says “NO COPYING PERIOD”. Everyone would have their own language, you won’t be walking in your ancestor’s footsteps, you’ll have to come up with your own formula.

This is why we are having cross browser issues and require to write extra css for different browser, because each of these browser company don’t want to “copy” each other’s work. LOL


“Good artists copy, great artists steal”


I try, but some issues are hard, then i see the codes of Github or Blog of FreeCodeCamp, read the code, understand, and copy+paste with the comment /* code from [website] */.


Okay…so even if youre going to look up the answers and just use that, try to at least type it out yourself instead of copy and pasting it. And make it a point to go back to those exercies and keep trying them again til you get it to be able to write it yourself. At least that way you are typing it yourself and not just copying someone else… its hard, thats the point…, but its always going to be hard if you dont at least try. If you want to learn, you owe it to yoruself to put some effort in.

Besides that, they get progressively harder…not easier. So it makes way more sense to figure out your own answers instead of just swiping someone elses. Otherwise, when you get to the projects…you’ll be tempted to just copy and paste that too. And Im sure…well, I hope that FCC has safeguards in place to avoid giving out certs to people who got through the whole course by just copying everyone elses work. Thats a huge blow to the people who spent the time struggling through it, and earned it through their own hard work.

You have it in you to do it yourself…trust, its not easy for anyone else and youre the only one having a hard time…Im used to catching on to things super fast, so its frustrating to not be able to read it once or twice and then get it…would never just copy though because its important to me to actually learn this stuff. Just focus and try. At the end of the day though, only person you are cheating is yourself (unless you get the cert by continuing on this way…kinda annoyed just thinking about that to be honest…but thats on your conscious to deal with if it comes to that.)


You will always learn by reading code someone else already created before and that’s not anything wrong with it, if those persons didn’t wanted you to use it they would not make it available, the wrong thing is regarding copy/paste…

I don’t think there is anything wrong with reading the code on one side and understanding it, then go to your project and apply it as you can, sometimes you will get more laps to get it going better but that will makes you fully understand it, take it like this: when you are understanding someone’s else code you are studying and then when you are trying by yourself you are testing yourself if you can do the same you just learned!

Just remember that understanding (like you do with mathmatics, logic, etc. subjects) is different from fix it in your head (like you do with history, filosophy, etc. subjects)… And please don’t just type in your code, what you are seeing on the other person code, that is just the same as using CTRL+C and CTRL+V, just takes longer! LOL