Plagiarism is the act of copying content which actually belongs to someone else. For example, you need to publish an article on your website that explains all about house training puppies, but you are not a good writer, and you also don’t want to hire a writer. Instead, you visit someone else’s site and you copy one of their articles which you then post on your site.

What Are the Risks?

If you copy content from a website belonging to another person or business entity, you could, in fact, be guilty of a criminal offence, depending on the circumstances. Strictly speaking, plagiarism in itself is not illegal. However, if you copy content which is protected by copyright laws, then you could be sued in a court of law for copyright violation.

Many people have their own blog sites with plenty of content that is not protected by copyright laws, but unless you want to run the risk of being involved in a very costly court case, you really need to tread very carefully when it comes to copying other people’s content.

For most average website owners, the big worry is not about the possibility of being sued, but instead, it is about Google. Google HATES duplicate content!!! You can try every SEO (search engine optimization) trick in the book to improve your rankings in the search results, but if Google discovers that your site is full of duplicate content you can quite literally kiss your rankings goodbye.

I GUARANTEE you that you cannot fool Google. If you publish duplicate content on your site you WILL get caught out. Plagiarism might be very tempting at times, but it is simply not worth the risk.

Why Use A Plagiarism Checker?

Many people and particularly full-time writers use plagiarism checker in order to check whether or not their work will stand up to Google’s scrutiny. Although unintentional plagiarism is not very common, it can still happen. This is when you write an original article but when you run it through a plagiarism test it fails. This has in fact happened to me once before a good few years ago, and for this reason, I always check every article I write.

Plagiarism checkers can of course also be used to see if anyone else has been copying content from your site and then publishing it on their own site. If you find some of your content elsewhere on the internet, you can then report that site to Google, and yes, action will be taken.

Plagiarism Checker For Free

Is it possible to use a plagiarism checker for free? To be honest, I am not actually sure if I should say yes, or if I should say no. There are a couple of free plagiarism checkers out there, but I have personally never had much luck with them. Quite often, when you actually try to use them you simply end up with an error message telling you your request could not be processed.

Some free checkers also don’t compare all the text in a document, but instead, they only compare randomly chosen sentences. In some cases, you might also be restricted to a certain number of scans per month, while other websites require you to sign up for a free membership and then they bombard you with countless emails.

Sites that offer a spelling checker; a grammar checker and a plagiarism checker all under a single banner with reasonably priced subscriptions tend to work best for me. This allows me to conveniently check for spelling errors and grammatical errors before running it through a plagiarism test. There’s no need for me to go from one site to the next. I can carry out all three tests from a single location and then publish or submit my completed work.

Nonetheless, if you have a REALLY tight budget, then, of course, any plagiarism checker for free is better than no checker at all.