The practice of appropriating the intellectual properties of others for profit or assumed prestige has always been rampant. Most law firms rake a lot of fees going after those who copied logos, packaging and other distinctive brands copyrighted by world famous names. Lately copying written works has become an epidemic widespread among students lazy to read and research. They simply copy and paste what they pass on as their own term and research projects. It has gone a level higher when supreme court justice, business magnate, critic and literary author and most recently, a senior senator were charged of liberally splicing their decision, commencement address and “turno en contra” with ideas lifted word for word from original authors without bye or leave.
As easy to skim the world wide web for practically any subject under the sun which has been written and discussed, it is also as fast and convenient to check authorship with the same web application. Without the wizardry of google, stealing ideas and intellectual works could had been tough to detect and easily pass on as original pieces.
The fault of well-known personalities caught by the ingenuity of web hecklers is partly caused by employing researchers and ghost writers too lazy to put together original brainstorms that justify their fees. Their principals expected to review and check its genuiness understandably are too busy and stake their reputation on the integrity of their speech writers.
Even in other creative pursuits like advertising, there are headlines and illustrations lifted from other award winning copy writers and artists. The standard mea culpa is that after all there is no original idea in this world. With tv or print ads, tweaking the picture or the headline is an excuse to claim that it is an entirely new concept. Unfortunately in written treatises and articles, lifting paragraphs and arguments word for word can be detected in real time by internet aficionados on the look out for this type of intellectual thievery.
As political figure or supposed intellectual giant gets endless flaks for major gaffes specially on controversial issues, the only option is to bite the bullet and beg forgiveness. There is no sense letting the hard earned goodwill and popularity get eroded further by letting bloggers, internet and media hecklers make fun of an unexpected blunder. Or better yet hire a new and competent ghost writer.