Saturday, March 14, 2009

Positively Negative

"False Positives on Plagiarism" in Inside Higher Ed looked at how the company behind a top-selling plagiarism-detection algorithm marketed to high schools and universities,, attempted to influence opinion in the field of composition by subsidizing speakers to appear at the annual Conference on College Composition and Communication in San Francisco, despite the fact that composition instructors from Texas Tech also were presenting data that showed that the service often misidentified papers as plagiarized.

But some of those in the program giving papers that suggest a more positive view of Turnitin confirmed that they have been promised money by the company. The board of the composition association has adopted new rules, prompted by Turnitin's grants to selected speakers, to encourage speakers to disclose their financial support, but some speakers said they didn't know about the rule.

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