In the world of academics and professional writing, plagiarism is a serious issue. It’s crucial to understand what it is and how to avoid it. In this article, we’ll delve into the question: Is using ChatGPT considered plagiarism? We’ll also explore the best free plagiarism checkers, acceptable levels of plagiarism, and techniques for removing plagiarism through paraphrasing.
Plagiarism is the act of presenting someone else’s work as your own. It’s different from copyright infringement, which involves using someone else’s work without permission. While plagiarism isn’t typically illegal, it can have severe consequences, such as a failing grade in academics or a loss of credibility in the professional world. It’s generally discouraged as it does not contribute to the advancement of knowledge and understanding.
Checking for Plagiarism
The most effective way to check for plagiarism is to use a plagiarism checker. These tools, available online, both free and paid, scan your text against a database of other texts to check for similarities. Some popular options include Grammarly and Turnitin, the latter being widely used by universities.
One good free plagiarism checker is Q-Text. It shows the percentage of your text that matches other sources and provides links to those sources. However, it’s important to remember that not all plagiarism checkers are created equal. For instance, another free checker, PlagiarismDetector.net, might not be as reliable due to its unlimited usage and the presence of many pop-ups and ads.
ChatGPT and Plagiarism
To test if ChatGPT generates plagiarized content, we asked it to write a 500-word essay about artificial intelligence and ran it through a plagiarism checker. The text generated by ChatGPT isn’t original. It’s trained on a massive dataset of text and can generate human-like responses to prompts.
According to Q-Text, the content had a 47% probability of plagiarism. However, Grammarly, which scans private databases and is likely more accurate, indicated that 24% of the text matched fragments from nine sources on the web or in academic databases.
Acceptable Levels of Plagiarism
The acceptable level of plagiarism isn’t clear-cut. Different journals and institutions have varying standards. Generally, if a text has a similarity below 10%, it’s considered acceptable. However, if it’s over 25%, that’s considered a high percentage of plagiarism. The safest bet is always going to be 0%.
To remove plagiarism, one can properly cite and quote any sources used in the text. Another technique is to ask ChatGPT to rewrite the text without any plagiarism. Surprisingly, this can cut the plagiarism down by 50%.
Including specific details in your prompt when asking ChatGPT to write something can also help. For instance, adding common questions found on Google brought the plagiarism down to just 8%. Another strategy is to go through any plagiarized text piece by piece and rephrase it. You can do this manually or ask ChatGPT to do it for you.
While ChatGPT can generate text that is 100% original and doesn’t match any text on the web or in private databases, it’s important to remember that originality doesn’t necessarily equate to quality or value to readers. A better way to use ChatGPT might be as a starting point for your writing. For example, ask it to write an outline for an essay or article, then add in the specific topics or questions you want to cover, and ask ChatGPT to write an essay based on that. This way, you’ll have a first draft that you can work on and improve section by section.