Tom’s Tips

How I Tortured Plagiarists

Posted by: By Tom Woods | November 29, 2018

In my days as a professor, I had some plagiarists.

I have zero sympathy for such people.

It was easy to spot a plagiarist. I would look at the person’s paper and know: college freshmen don’t write like this. The student has no idea what any of this means.

Then I’d find the source they copied from. It was easy: it was always on the first page of Google. You’d think they’d cover themselves a bit by checking out page 37, but they never did.

I’d then call the student into my office.

I would ask the squirming student what particular sentences meant.

One after the other.

They soon figured out that I knew.

And of course, they had no idea what those sentences meant.

One time a student actually swiped a passage from libertarian writer Wendy McElroy, whom I actually know.

On another occasion a student’s paper on Thomas Sowell’s book Civil Rights: Rhetoric or Reality? consisted of some Amazon reviews of the book strung together.

The one original sentence of the entire paper said something about racism being the cause of income disparities between blacks and whites, which is something like the opposite of the thesis of Sowell’s book.

Yesterday a friend of mine in the marketing world discovered that a reasonably well known young marketer had, for a second time [!], used huge passages of this guy’s advertising copy in his own offer.

My friend put up a side-by-side screenshot of his writing next to this other fellow’s. Absolutely identical.

It was devastating.

In the comments, people really piled on.

Eventually the perp himself showed up and came clean. He made no excuses. He apologized.

Some people said: what a guy! He didn’t make excuses! He apologized!

My response: what else could he do? He had no choice. An apology alone doesn’t make him a decent fellow. Nobody in his right mind in that thread will ever do business with him again.

And what a shame: that guy just blew one of the best gigs in the world. He sells mainly information products, which are infinitely reproducible, require no inventory, and have practically no overhead. People who work in this field can do so from anywhere and at any time.

I do a lot of this myself, and I’ve got a pretty darn nice life as a result.

How to do it?

Well, I got a free membership for you at something called Product Profits Club, which contains some helpful training videos and some recommended resources for people just starting out.

But don’t blow it like that jerk.

Just go claim that free membership:

https://www.happyearner.com/freemembership

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