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Topsarge

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Just clicked on one of the banners atop the Water Cooler site that was looking for Essay writers. Something about the site seems strange. Poor English, strange sentence structure. Are these guys for real?
 

drsbanerji

Just clicked on one of the banners atop the Water Cooler site that was looking for Essay writers. Something about the site seems strange. Poor English, strange sentence structure. Are these guys for real?

They owe a substantial sum of money. Be wary of working with them!
 

AW Admin

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As Admin/Webmaster of AW, I just received the following email from Jason Taylor:


Jason Taylor said:
Hello,

Please remove all links to my site, essaytown.com. (I apologize for this not being a personalized email, but it is not feasible for me to manually write, edit, and send a unique email to every site owner. I appreciate your understanding in that regard.)

Google has penalized my 12-year-old site (which is my family's only source of income) for having too many "unnatural" backlinks. Apparently, Google now considers links from directories and similar sites to be "unnatural." Of course, that is not fair to webmasters or directory owners. Despite the fact that I obtained most of my directory links many years ago, Google is still forcing me to remove them. I realize that Google's changes in policy are not your fault. So, instead of disavowing your site in Google Webmaster Tools, I am contacting you first so that you have the opportunity to remove all of the links.

NOTE: ALL LINKS ARE BROKEN
If you click on one of your links to essaytown.com, you will see that your browser generates a "403 Forbidden" error. That's very bad for the SEO of your site because Google does not like pages that contain broken links (and neither do visitors). So, not only will you be a very nice person for removing all links to essaytown.com, but you'll also be protecting your own site against potential search engine penalties and lost rankings.

Thank you in advance for your time and cooperation. I look forward to your response.

Regards,
Jason Taylor
essaytown.com
Example Research, Inc.

I want to point out that he's running an essay mill for lying, cheating, fake academics and students.

It's unethical. It's illegal in some jurisdictions, and it's execrable behavior.

And I'm not removing anything.
 

Chase

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I want to point out that he's running an essay mill. . . .

Why would strapped college students pay cold cash for off-subject essays completely out of character, voice, and ability for themselves when half of the fraternities, sororities, and assistant coaches have several file drawers chock full of off-subject essays completely out of character, voice, and ability for free?

The site was for the few, the plagiarists, the most likely to draw academic probation.
 

Medievalist

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Why would strapped college students pay cold cash for off-subject essays completely out of character, voice, and ability for themselves when half of the fraternities, sororities, and assistant coaches have several file drawers chock full of off-subject essays completely out of character, voice, and ability for free?

The site was for the few, the plagiarists, the most likely to draw academic probation.

And for those who can afford to pay. The kid who's working two part-time jobs and going to school and pulling Cs?

He's out of luck. But for those paying top dollar, those who can afford to pay a grad student an obscene amount of money for a custom written essay?

I hope that kid gets caught (I've caught more than a few) and has an honor code violation, and an F, on his or her permanent record.

And that said low-life has bedbugs. And crabs. And is ditched by the SO for being a cheating poltroon.
 

FluffBunny

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Why would strapped college students pay cold cash for off-subject essays completely out of character, voice, and ability for themselves when half of the fraternities, sororities, and assistant coaches have several file drawers chock full of off-subject essays completely out of character, voice, and ability for free?

The site was for the few, the plagiarists, the most likely to draw academic probation.

(bolding added) Those students availing themselves of the contents of those "file drawers chock full of off-subject essays" are also plagiarists.

If I had my way and a handy pitchfork, every last one of them would have a permanent grade of "FP" (Failed-Plagiarism) on their transcripts and academic suspension for a year. I'd try and work in something about branding them with an "F", but I wouldn't want to get too carried away. Probably. I'm still undecided on the proper punishment for their accomplices in crime, the essay-mills. Something icky. Hmmm....

A pox on Essaytown and it's owner. May their Google ranking continue to "dwindle, peak and pine." (William Shakespeare, The Tragedy of MacBeth, Publisher unknown, c. 1607)
 

Chase

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Those students availing themselves of the contents of those "file drawers chock full of off-subject essays" are also plagiarists.

Exactly my point. Except perhaps for a few of the tailor-made essays Medie mentioned, most purloined papers fail to address the assignment, are wholly in an unusual diction than that of the student, or are a patchwork of different styles.

I graded essays for over a quarter century, and the red flags are many. For the most part, plagiarists are never as clever as they suppose. One volleyball player had the misfortune to take her F paper (failed due to coming nowhere near the assignment) to the dean with the complaint the student's sister got an A with the identical paper two years ago. I could write a book.
 

FluffBunny

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My apologies for misunderstanding. The only defense I can make was that my last caffeine intake was quite a few hour previous to the post.

"Hate" is too strong a word, but I've taken a scunner to plagiarists and their accomplices with the heat of a thousand suns.
 

Mara

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And for those who can afford to pay. The kid who's working two part-time jobs and going to school and pulling Cs?

He's out of luck. But for those paying top dollar, those who can afford to pay a grad student an obscene amount of money for a custom written essay?

That's what angers me about this stuff the most. The rich kids already tend to have huge advantages coming into school and are less likely to need a job, and they still can't find time to sit down and write their own damn papers? Hell, they can afford to just hire grad students to _teach_ them what they couldn't learn in classes or on their own.
 

veinglory

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There was a time where plagiarism led to expulsion. Now it seems to be considered a misdemeanor. IMHO The US could follow the New Zealand example and make paper mills illegal. They are, after all, based entirely on facilitating fraud.
 

Chase

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At the small state college where I taught, each incidence of plagiarism was dealt with on a case-by-case basis. The very general rule of thumb of graduated consequences in the English department:

In 101, basic expository writing, where the basics were being practiced, the type of "common knowledge" plagiarism where the student cited specific "remembered" facts such as distances to the two nearest stars or exact dates and locations Civil War battles, the paper got an F with a stern warning. Second instances received an F for the course. Any out and out copied papers rated an F for the course and up to two years academic probation.

In subsequent first-year English 102 and 103, any undocumented information on papers (not from direct experience) was an automatic F for the course and two years academic probation. Any copied materials rated expulsion and two years probation.

Any proven plagiarism in upper division classes got a student booted from ours and any state college for two years.

I completely agree with Veinglory that fraudulent ID, diploma, and essay businesses should get the owners and operators prison time--even if they manufacture get-out-of-jail-free cards:D.
 
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Medievalist

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I was generally adamant about a visible F and a retake of the class for plagiarism.

Second offense was a permanent note on the transcript, and a black listing from all UC schools; it was considered cheating as much as any of the other varieties of cheating.

The thing about plagiarists is it's rare that it's a first offense. When you look at adults, including faculty, who plagiarize, they usually began as students.
 

Chase

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Your so right that plagiarism is a learned crime.

As did yours I suspect, my syllabi outlined harsher consequences, if for no other reason than they were warned in writing and at each class meeting during the first two weeks.

Part of my warning to college frosh included understand how some middle and high school students had experienced success at copying from encyclopedias et al, changing a few words, and slapping what they thought passed for research on the old bat's/bastard's desk.

In the six years I taught high school English, they didn't get by with it in my classes, and the practice came to a screeching halt in college 101.

It's incredible how many thought anything in World Book or Encyclopaedia Britannica was "common knowledge" and free to pluck from (plagar).

But those are the minor leaguers as opposed to those paying EssayTown and its ilk.
 

Wisteria Vine

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I had the 'pleasure' of working for a first year writing director who informed us that our new policy was "plagiarism is a teachable moment," and that were to be no penalties imposed on students who get caught. They were allowed to resubmit anything they plagiarized. That was just one of her new "student-centric" policies. The others would make your heads spin.

You can imagine the delight within the department when she moved on.
 

James D. Macdonald

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You mean the distances to the two or three nearest stars and the dates and places of major Civil War battles aren't common knowledge? Shoot.

The Battle of Vicksburg (which took place Vicksburg, Mississippi, Sam Grant commanding on the Union side, John Pemberton for the Confederacy) and the Battle of Gettysburg (which took place at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, George Meade commanding on the Union side, Robert Lee commanding for the Confederacy) both ended (with Union victories) on the same day (July 4, 1863).
 

Chase

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The Battle of Vicksburg (which took place Vicksburg, Mississippi, Sam Grant commanding on the Union side, John Pemberton for the Confederacy) and the Battle of Gettysburg (which took place at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, George Meade commanding on the Union side, Robert Lee commanding for the Confederacy) both ended (with Union victories) on the same day (July 4, 1863).

J,

Your "incomplete" is because your comparison-contrast essay was assigned as something in your own personal experience, as are all 101 assignments this quarter in order to avoid the research issue covered in 102 and 103.

North versus South is an excellent topic. While I understand it's common knowledge the battles of Vicksburg and Gettysburg took place near those cities, and Union victories were decided on Independence Day, I hope you fought on one side or the other to have personal knowledge of other details.

Please bring your birth certificate and/or discharge papers to my office during posted hours this week. Otherwise, the "I" grade will automatically revert to "F" before the next essay is assigned Monday.

Looking forward to meeting another vet.

C.
 

James D. Macdonald

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Dunno about fighting there, but I sure-enough saw the historical markers.

There's a town I drive through, over in Vermont, every time I go to Albacon. It's got an amazing Civil War monument dedicated to the local regiment with the slogan carved on the side, "Big Bethel to Appomattox: Ever Faithful." That means they fought a long, hard war. (Big Bethel, as everyone knows, was the first land battle of the American Civil War following the fall of Fort Sumter, if you discount a couple of minor skirmishes. Those I might have to look up. Appomattox was where Bobby Lee surrendered on Palm Sunday, 1865.)

Can't say that I fought at Big Bethel either, but when I was stationed at Newport News I biked up there. There's a reservoir now where the battlefield was.

But my service in the Civil War isn't the question. The question is whether knowing that the Battle of Gettysburg took place at Gettysburg is common knowledge. I'd say, off-hand, that it is.

Plagiarism is using someone else's words as your own without crediting the source. Even if the words were hand-crafted for the assignment, if they aren't mine, they're plagiarized.
 

MysteriousFemme

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Plagiarism is using someone else's words as your own without crediting the source. Even if the words were hand-crafted for the assignment, if they aren't mine, they're plagiarized.
I have to agree with this. There are certain things, facts people learn through schooling for instance, that stick with them. These facts had to be memorized for exams and state exams. I couldn't possibly remember exactly what textbook I was using in 8th grade(random selection). That was ten years ago and I'd be lucky if I even got its color right.

Not all ENG101 professors teach the same thing or have similar syllabi. When my friends and I were freshman, at different schools, we didn't have the same requirements for ENG101(You didn't specify what kind of paper you were speaking about in your earlier posts Chase). Even in papers that are "assigned as something in your own personal experience", how exactly would one go about citing such general information? This also brings to question, what is general information when some people know more about certain things than others?

As a science major, I know many facts off hand (eg: many of the scientists who discovered certain elements) that someone who is a history buff may not. This information may be general to me while it's not for someone else who doesn't study science. I also couldn't tell you from where these facts come from(textbook, professor, independent research/study), only that I learned them and they stuck with me. If I were your student and some of these facts came up in one of these personal experience papers, would I have to randomly search for some text to cite in order for it to not be plagiarism when it is in fact something that I know is fact?

Everyone has their points of view and I don't expect us to agree, but I'd be very annoyed at a professor that would mark down my hard work all because I stated that there are 525,600 minutes in a year and I didn't cite "Seasons of Love" as my source of that knowledge.
 
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Stacia Kane

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Yeah, that bothered me, too. Students are penalized for knowing things? They're required to hunt around to find some "source" to confirm facts they may have learned years before, that should be commonly known and accepted? Isn't the point of school to be able to state facts without having to hunt around for them?

I have all kinds of knowledge and facts wandering around in my head, and I shouldn't have to claim I was there in order to use them. I know Mt. Everest is 29,035 feet high, but I've never climbed it. I know Martin Luther posted the Ninety-Five Theses on a church door in Germany on October 31, 1517, but I didn't personally witness it. No one "owns" those facts; it's not plagiarism to state, for example, that Barack Obama is President and lives in the White House. That isn't someone else's words. I have "personal knowledge" of those facts because I went to school and learned them with the specific intent of gaining personal knowledge.

This seems to imply that facts don't belong to society, but to individual people. Or that students today couldn't possibly have a body of knowledge from which to draw, which is very sad, IMO.
 
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