The team is joined by Guest Kats Rosie Burbidge, Stephen Jones, Mathilde Pavis, and Eibhlin Vardy, and by InternKats Verónica Rodríguez Arguijo, Hayleigh Bosher, Tian Lu and Cecilia Sbrolli.

Friday, 3 September 2010

More on plagiarism

Further to IPKat team member Neil's post earlier today (here), and seeing as the weekend is almost upon us, here are some enjoyable themes for readers to contemplate.

1. Tom Lehrer's classic song 'Plagiarize' (you can listen here or read the lyrics here), summoned up from the depths of Tony McStea's memory, which contains the obviously relevant verse

Let no one else's work evade your eyes
Remember why the good Lord made your eyes
So don't shade your eyes
But plagiarize, plagiarize, plagiarize
Only be sure always to call it please "research".
2. UniBergen's 5 minute masterpiece Et Plagieringseventyr (which you can watch here), drawn to the Kats' attention by University of Plymouth librarian and copyright guru Graham Titley.

3 In Praise of Plagiarism. Team member Jeremy has additionally unearthed In Praise of Plagiarism by Russell A. Hunt (St. Thomas University), which bears a notice that reads, "in-process draft, based on oral presentation. Please cite or quote from one of the published versions". Hmm.


Anonymous said...

Of course, the title of Lehrer's masterpiece is "Lobachevsky", not "Plagiarize".

Jeremy said...

To Anonymous 4:37pm -- You're right, but "Plagiarize" is easier to remember, less offensive to the memory of Nikolai Lobachevsky and more apposite to the subject matter.

See this too: "Some mathematicians and historians have wrongfully claimed that Lobachevsky stole his concept of non-Euclidean geometry from Gauss, which is untrue - Gauss himself appreciated Lobachevsky's published works very highly, but they never had personal correspondence between them prior to the publication. In fact out of the three people that can be credited with discovery of hyperbolic geometry - Gauss, Lobachevsky and Bolyai, Lobachevsky rightfully deserves having his name attached to it, since Gauss never published his ideas and out of the latter two Lobachevsky was the first who duly presented his views to the world mathematical community".

That's why the Kats renamed the song.

Anonymous said...


You are correct that Lobachevsky was the first who duly presented his views to the world mathematical community.
However, Bolyai did have a proof before Lobachevsky, and DID submit that proof to Gauss (Bolyai's Father's best friend) before Lobachevsky had his version published.
BOTH Lobachevsky and Bolyai deserve credit for the invetion of hyperbolic geometry.
In fact, if anyone does not, it would be Gauss, who made no attempt to publish his version, which was supposedly found in his private diaries post-mortem (I don't mean this as a knock again the great gauss, just as a defence of the other two mathematicians).

What I want to know is why hasn't hollywood made a movie about this yet?

Subscribe to the IPKat's posts by email here

Just pop your email address into the box and click 'Subscribe':