Did you notice how easily it became to get any information you need? Unless it’s strictly confidential, of course. When you’re browsing on the web, there’s so many data and information that it makes you rather drown than surf. So how do you judge if this writing is true, original, and, most importantly, BS-free? How can you be sure that “recent unique discovery” is really recent, unique, and not shameful copy paste from 1936 work of some anonymous scholar from Midwest?

Luckily, the booming technology gave us also the tools to check such information thoroughly. At least, when it comes to plagiarism and authenticity of the text. This article will give you a full insight of what a plagiarism checker is, how it works, what it does (and doesn’t), who may need it, and where to find it for free.

What a Plagiarism Checker Is and How it Works

Plagiarism checker is a software tool that compares the given text to other already existing ones in the database for exactly the same or nearly identical paragraphs. But is it true that any information highlighted or underlined by the checker is necessarily a case of plagiarism? This is a question to be discussed with the professional who will be able to deliver a verdict whether the text is plagiarized or not.

For the professors, it’s a great tool to check plagiarism free and see if the students really did their homework or went with copy-paste methods. For the marketers, however, it’s a nice way to see if their writings are in any case original. Whoever the user is, these software programs are aimed at one and the same thing: help the writer to create an original, informative piece.

What a Plag Checker Does…

After we got the idea what a plag checker is, let’s see what it does. As mentioned before, it compares the input text to the ones already in the database. What it gives us is the percentage of a coincidence it found in the related text. The algorithm that it uses highly relies on the topic, keywords, and the words repeating throughout the texts. OK, so you insert your text, and 5 minutes after it says “You text is 90% unique?”. What does it mean? It means that although the text has some coincidence with other texts on the web, it lacks only 10% to be fully authentic.

Now here is the trick. Sometimes, when you have the quote, or saying, or even the proper name of a song, geographic location, or even the name of the poem, it can also consider it as a case of plagiarism. From this perspective, proper citation formatting is crucial. First of all, you have to give the credits to the researcher or source anyway, it’s the basics of the academic or any other writing ethics. Secondly, this will free you from the necessity of changing the passage that was identified as plagiarized by the program.

As the needs of the writers and publishers evolve and change all the time, the checking software quickly responds to their needs. For example, some programs will provide you with links to the sources that have a very high similarity index of particular words or phrases. Others check for plagiarism free and highlight the parts that are repeated in similar works. However, it’s not an almighty tool, and there are some features it cannot do yet.

…and What It Doesn’t

To start with, any plag checker works with the specific database in a chosen language on the web. It means that if it says “The text is plagiarism free”, it’s so in comparison to the specific number of texts it has access to. For example, when you are uploading the term paper in literature, depending on which checker you use, it’ll be able to run your work through the texts that are already in the database. It might have or have not access to the academic journals with publications that require a subscription. It may have or have not the option to operate within the academic essay hubs to check potential plagiarism issues.

Furthermore, the plagiarism isn’t only the consequent repetition of four or more words in one sentence. What’s viewed as plagiarism is not giving the credits for the previous researchers. Unfortunately, no plag checker can identify that maybe this is the reason we still have the academic writing advisors at the colleges.

Who Needs It

The academic community of professors and students is, obviously, the main target audience of the software. However, they are not the only ones Writers are using the programs as well, it’s just the purpose that is different. For the latter, it is crucial to run a plag check to ensure that their work wasn’t accepted or published anywhere else as it would cause the violation of the agreement with the publisher, who printed the text earlier. The publishers, in their turn, use it to control if they don’t duplicate content. For the marketers and SEO specialist, it comes handy when building social media marketing strategies and be innovative in their approach to creating content.

Where to Find It

The web is a huge source of different software tools one can use for free, and plagiarism checkers are not the exception. What people should keep in mind while choosing one is the purpose of the check. For example, when you search for free online plagiarism checker for students, the browser will provide you with the tools that are widely used by the academic community and serve as the guards or copyright and copy-paste.

SEO-related plagiarism checker might be more advanced as it will not only screen the texts out there but will have the options to revise keywords, grammar, spelling, and word count issues. In some marketing software programs, the plagiarism checker is an additional feature.

Even though free plagiarism checkers are in the open access, a user should be clear with the purpose before choosing one for the needs. However, it doesn’t mean that the writer should rely solely on the results it shows and take them for granted. What one should do is to stay alert and critically filter, analyze, and correct the parts of the text to reach the ultimate goal of written communication: to provide information in an ethical, clear, and innovative way.

My name is Alexia Walker, I am a blogger and work as an editor. I have a Master’s Degree in literature and love both reading and writing about books and literary topics. I also help students with their literary assignments – articles, essays and summmaries of books.

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