It seems so simple. The Internet is free, easy to use, open 24 hours a day and has everything you need for school and personal entertainment: research materials, term papers, software, music, and videos to download. CDs are simple to duplicate and give to your friends, and your cell phone keeps you in touch with them in and out of class.
So, what is the problem? Just because something is available and easy does not make it legal or right.
A national survey published in Education Week found that 54% of students admitted to plagiarizing from the Internet; 74% of students admitted that at least once during the past school year they had engaged in "serious" cheating; and 47% of students believe their teachers sometimes choose to ignore students who are cheating.
It is expected that all Boise School District staff and students will comply with copyright and fair use laws. There are numerous excellent resources available to answer your questions about the laws. A few of the best are listed on our Resources page.
Be sure a get this chart covering the basics of copyright and fair use guidelines for teachers that you can copy and distribute as needed (courtesy of TechLearning.com)
Areas of copyright concerns:
Plagiarism: To steal and pass off (the ideas or words of another) as one's own; use (another's production) without crediting the source; to commit literary theft; present as new and original an idea or product derived from an existing source.
(Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary)
Plagiarism in any form is unacceptable. Proper credit and citation must be given whenever material is copied and/or paraphrased.
A person who copies CDs, does not pay for shareware, or shares MP3 files or software with friends is stealing property. While this person might never consider shoplifting or burglary, there really is no moral, ethical or economic difference between the theft of intellectual property and that of physical property.
Economic losses due to copying and piracy are enormous. Artists and creators lose income, governments lose tax revenues and all consumers eventually get less variety and choice. Prices rise for those who do pay to compensate for the theft by those who do not.
What parents & teachers can do:
How it's done:
What teachers can do to prevent it: