Why does this look like plagiarism?

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Josh | Forum Activity | Posted: Sat, May 22 2021 1:19 PM

I looked up Matthew 5:43-44 in a few different commentaries and stumbled upon this. The language is exactly the same - for several paragraphs. I must be missing something. 

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HJ. van der Wal | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 1:28 PM

Josh:

The language is exactly the same - for several paragraphs. I must be missing something. 

Both commentaries were written by the same author, so at least he plagiarized himself.

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NB.Mick | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 1:31 PM

It's the same author, David L. Turner. BECNT obviously is a more detailed and in-depth commentary than Cornerstone, but still the same author may re-use their own words (often acknowledged in the later work - but given the production time of bible commentaries, it's not always clear that the one published later was written later).

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Kiyah | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 1:31 PM

Looks like David L. Turner is plagiarizing himself. He wrote the Matthew portion of the Cornerstone commentary and wrote the Baker commentary. Ethically he's still required to cite himself. I only own the Cornerstone commentary published by Tyndale (2005), I don't own the Baker commentary (2008), so I can't check to see whether there is a blurb somewhere in there that says "parts of this commentary were adapted from the Cornerstone Matthew commentary published by Tyndale..."

If there's no citation anywhere in any form of the previous commentary he is plagiarizing himself which is still plagiarism.

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Josh | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 1:47 PM

Solved! It is the same author. I only noticed Bock's name. Embarrassed

However, simply copying and pasting large sections of old work does seem lackadaisical.

Posts 35
Ken Thompsen | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 1:48 PM

Kiyah:

Looks like David L. Turner is plagiarizing himself. He wrote the Matthew portion of the Cornerstone commentary and wrote the Baker commentary. Ethically he's still required to cite himself. I only own the Cornerstone commentary published by Tyndale (2005), I don't own the Baker commentary (2008), so I can't check to see whether there is a blurb somewhere in there that says "parts of this commentary were adapted from the Cornerstone Matthew commentary published by Tyndale..."

If there's no citation anywhere in any form of the previous commentary he is plagiarizing himself which is still plagiarism.

We don't know the arrangements or licensing with the publishers. Until you do, you shouldn't attack someone so harshly. More biblical books than you realize recycle writer's material. It's not uncommon to see, say, an Atlas go under a different brand or even entirely different publishing house in a different market (especially the case with foreign markets). It's not uncommon to see old Baker commentaries or reference materials make their way into more "budget" friendly brands like Hendrickson either. For example, I've seen Laney's Concise Bible Atlas and Victor Matthews' Manners and Customs of the Bible start under bigger publishers when they came out, but make it to Hendrickson later.

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HJ. van der Wal | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 1:57 PM

Pathfinder:

Until you do, you shouldn't attack someone so harshly. 

Let me be the first to admit that I find it hard not to recycle material that I wrote. Especially when the deadline for the church bulletin is drawing near...

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William Gabriel | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 1:59 PM

Kiyah:

If there's no citation anywhere in any form of the previous commentary he is plagiarizing himself which is still plagiarism.

Perhaps as an industry standard but certainly not from a moral point of view.

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Kiyah | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 2:16 PM

William Gabriel:

Kiyah:

If there's no citation anywhere in any form of the previous commentary he is plagiarizing himself which is still plagiarism.

Perhaps as an industry standard but certainly not from a moral point of view.

My seminary professors would disagree with you as well as the academic handbook. We were required to cite ourselves. I guess I would ask from whose "moral point of view." If you don't think plagiarism is at all immoral, your comment makes sense. However, it is factually plagiarism by definition if there is no citation or disclaimer anywhere in the commentary.

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DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 2:24 PM

No citation required if you preach a series of sermons copying others and then publish them in print or digital form.  You could literally be reading from a Bible dictionary during a sermon and then put it in book form and you don’t have to cite the original author of the dictionary.  Just ask R.T. Kendall in his Understanding Theology Volumes 1-3.  I’ve mentioned this before, but can’t quite understand how or when plagiarism “laws” apply and when they don’t.

DAL

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Kiyah | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 2:31 PM

Pathfinder:
We don't know the arrangements or licensing with the publishers. Until you do, you shouldn't attack someone so harshly. More biblical books than you realize recycle writer's material. It's not uncommon to see, say, an Atlas go under a different brand or even entirely different publishing house in a different market (especially the case with foreign markets). It's not uncommon to see old Baker commentaries or reference materials make their way into more "budget" friendly brands like Hendrickson either. For example, I've seen Laney's Concise Bible Atlas and Victor Matthews' Manners and Customs of the Bible start under bigger publishers when they came out, but make it to Hendrickson later.

I was not attacking anyone harshly. I'm just stating that it is possible to plagiarize yourself. I said I don't know what the other commentary contains since I don't own it. I see a lot of books in my library that have a statement about material being adapted from a previously published work. My point was that there should be a statement like that somewhere in the commentary given the amount of verbatim material that was used.

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DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 2:37 PM

We should have the Academic’s Handbook in Logos.  It might turn out to be useful: https://www.dukeupress.edu/the-academics-handbook-fourth-edition 

I don’t know which one would be better since I see many being published.

DAL

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JT (alabama24) | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 2:45 PM
  1. Self plagiarism is a real thing
  2. standards for academic credit ≠ standards for publishing
  3. there is nothing wrong with this IF he had the necessary permissions. 

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Posts 35
Ken Thompsen | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 2:56 PM

Kiyah:

Pathfinder:
We don't know the arrangements or licensing with the publishers. Until you do, you shouldn't attack someone so harshly. More biblical books than you realize recycle writer's material. It's not uncommon to see, say, an Atlas go under a different brand or even entirely different publishing house in a different market (especially the case with foreign markets). It's not uncommon to see old Baker commentaries or reference materials make their way into more "budget" friendly brands like Hendrickson either. For example, I've seen Laney's Concise Bible Atlas and Victor Matthews' Manners and Customs of the Bible start under bigger publishers when they came out, but make it to Hendrickson later.

I was not attacking anyone harshly. I'm just stating that it is possible to plagiarize yourself. I said I don't know what the other commentary contains since I don't own it. I see a lot of books in my library that have a statement about material being adapted from a previously published work. My point was that there should be a statement like that somewhere in the commentary given the amount of verbatim material that was used.

I believe you. It just came off as harsh at first. Mostly, I wanted to mention that bit about recycling material because I noticed it in hard copies before.

Posts 1118
Kiyah | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 2:57 PM

JT (alabama24):

  1. Self plagiarism is a real thing
  2. standards for academic credit ≠ standards for publishing
  3. there is nothing wrong with this IF he had the necessary permissions. 

Agreed. And re: #3, publishers of the new work usually tell you that they used previously published work with the permission of the previous publisher.

My opinion is that since these published works are being sold for money, the buyer should be informed that they are purchasing previously published material. What if you already bought the Tyndale commentary and then you buy the Baker commentary only to realize it's largely the same material as something you already purchased?

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Kiyah | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 2:59 PM

Pathfinder:
I believe you. It just came off as harsh at first. Mostly, I wanted to mention that bit about recycling material because I noticed it in hard copies before.

Fair enough.

Posts 35
Ken Thompsen | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 3:10 PM

Kiyah:

Pathfinder:
I believe you. It just came off as harsh at first. Mostly, I wanted to mention that bit about recycling material because I noticed it in hard copies before.

Fair enough.

Also, just to add, could it be that some religious publishers are unique in this sense, compared to other publishers? Are religious writers kind of like freelancers who own their own material and license it sometimes? The IVP Atlas (Paul Lawrence) is one example that comes to mind. It's IVP here in the US, but the Lion Atlas in UK, France, and the rest of Europe. Not at all even tangentially associated with IVP. Or Barry Beitzel's gigantic "Biblica" atlas. It's probably Beitzel's best work. It seemingly has different publishers across Europe, Asia, and Australia. As well as it's condensed version that goes by multiple names. I've seen the condensed version simply called "The Bible Atlas"under different publishers. In the UK, it has multiple publishers! SPCK has their own flavor and calls it the "The SPCK Bible Atlas".

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Kiyah | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 3:33 PM

Pathfinder:

Kiyah:

Pathfinder:
I believe you. It just came off as harsh at first. Mostly, I wanted to mention that bit about recycling material because I noticed it in hard copies before.

Fair enough.

Also, just to add, could it be that some religious publishers are unique in this sense, compared to other publishers? Are religious writers kind of like freelancers who own their own material and license it sometimes? The IVP Atlas (Paul Lawrence) is one example that comes to mind. It's IVP here in the US, but the Lion Atlas in UK, France, and the rest of Europe. Not at all even tangentially associated with IVP. Or Barry Beitzel's gigantic "Biblica" atlas. It's probably Beitzel's best work. It seemingly has different publishers across Europe, Asia, and Australia. As well as it's condensed version that goes by multiple names. I've seen the condensed version simply called "The Bible Atlas"under different publishers. In the UK, it has multiple publishers! SPCK has their own flavor and calls it the "The SPCK Bible Atlas".

I also wonder if Tyndale and Baker have some kind of agreement between themselves. I have two bible dictionaries in my library that have largely the same content, Tyndale Bible Dictionary and Baker Encyclopedia of the Bible. Many if not most of the dictionary entries are verbatim the same. However, they both have the following in their front matter:

Tyndale:

"PERMISSIONS FOR WRITTEN WORKS

Some of the articles in this dictionary have been adapted from other works published by Tyndale House Publishers, particularly The Origin of the Bible and Who’s Who in Christian History. In preparing several other articles, the editor, Philip Comfort, made some adaptions from his own previously published works, now no longer in print. These works are as follows: New Commentary on the Whole Bible (New Testament volume); I Am the Way; Opening the Gospel of John (with W. Hawley); The Complete Guide to Bible Versions; The Quest for the Original Text of the New Testament; Early Manuscripts and Modern Translations of the New Testament; and The Inspired Word."

Baker:

"Portions of the text of this volume were originally prepared by Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., and have been used with permission."

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 3:40 PM

Pathfinder:
Are religious writers kind of like freelancers who own their own material and license it sometimes?

Nearly all writers own their own materials and simply license out specific rights to it. The other common arrangement is where you work as an employee of a company and that company has ownership of your work as specified in your contract -- example the people who write Microsoft documentation. The rights are often very specific - poets usually sell "first publication rights in North America", then anthology rights -- and you better be sure the journal comes out before the anthology or there will be "hell to pay".

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Ken Thompsen | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 22 2021 3:46 PM

MJ. Smith:

Pathfinder:
Are religious writers kind of like freelancers who own their own material and license it sometimes?

Nearly all writers own their own materials and simply license out specific rights to it. The other common arrangement is where you work as an employee of a company and that company has ownership of your work as specified in your contract -- example the people who write Microsoft documentation. The rights are often very specific - poets usually sell "first publication rights in North America", then anthology rights -- and you better be sure the journal comes out before the anthology or there will be "hell to pay".

I did not know that. That sounds nice. Compare it to, say, the music industry where some creators consider themselves slaves (a famous example is the singer Prince.. who changed his name into a strange symbol. Everyone thought he was just being the weird "artist" at the time, but he was simply trying to break away from his old record contract under the name "Prince" and get another record deal more favorable to himself).

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