Novemeber 7, 2012
I believe Helene Hegemann thought no one would ever catch on to what she was doing when she stole parts and almost an entire page without changing basically anything from “the less-well-known novel “Strobo,” by an author writing under the nom de plume Airen.” (Kulish, 2010, para. 3) What really upset me is she became a finalist in a contest with this plagiarized work. How can that happen? The judges knew of the plagiarism and looked past it?
I don’t even understand why she did this, at 17-year-old Helene Hegemann had recently published her first novel, Axolotl Roadkill, a wild, tumultuous coming-of-age story. (European of the Week , 2010) She already had a career started, why would she throw it all away? Hegemann stated “There’s no such thing as originality anyway, just authenticity,” (Kulish, 2010,para. 9) If this is so, then her work is not very “authentic” now is it, considering the amount of work she stole from Airen. I personally think any money Hegemann makes from this book should be given to Airen.
I feel whether you are using it for the same purpose as the original author intended, or another, you need to properly acknowledge said author. Is it now acceptable to repurpose a phrase and call it your own? I personally think not, but apparently the judges in the book contest have their heads up their behinds, because they think it’s just fine. A member of the jury (panel of judges) said “that the panel had been aware of the plagiarism charges before they made their final selection.” (Kulish, 2010, para. 5)
I can understand on occasion you might have an oversight where you forget to cite a source, but from what I read, she was blatant, and really unapologetic about it. I think she should have dropped out of the contest.
I personally feel writing papers is just regurgitating someone else’s words. Is anything anyone writes REALLY original? I believe not! Yet, if you are going to...