Thursday, October 20, 2011

Did PeckBlog Plagiarize?

Saw a Tweet from Amy Peck tonight advertising an analysis of Texas' Constitutional Amendments on her blog. Always interested in political analysis I thought it wise to head over there and take a look. This is what I found:

Proposed Texas Constitutional Amendments, Amy Peck, PeckBlog

Here are the proposed state constitutional amendments coming up in the November election. As a state employee, I do not think it would be ethical to post my opinions about the proposed constitutional amendments. So instead I have posted an analysis and arguments for and against each proposed amendment. Post any questions you have in the comments, and I will do my best to get you an answer.

In and of itself, that's not too bad. The problem comes with the "analysis". If you go and read the PeckBlog "analysis" you might notice that it looks very familiar to the analysis found here. Again, this is not, in and of itself a problem.

What IS a problem is that it appears that Amy Peck has 100% either straight copied, or summarized the Texas Legislative Council's work without attribution, essentially presenting it as her own.

However you cut it, that's plagiarism.

Now, it's probable that this was unintentional, that Peck just used the TLC's document and is ignorant of copyright laws, and the pratfalls of not offering proper attribution. At worst, she intentionally ripped all of the content and presented it as her own. I don't think there's any way you can look at the two documents and make any kind of argument that the information on Peck's blog is her own.

Let's hope that we're dealing with the former and Peck corrects her error and apologizes.

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