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1UP, Plagiarizing, and Other Bits of Joy 106

Nathan writes "1up recently posted their Dead or Alive 4 strategy guide on their website. It didn't take long for users at the Dead or Alive Central forums to recognize their hard work analyzing the fighting game engine had been blatantly pasted into the strategy guide without any credit given whatsoever. While movelists are largely factual and can be argued to be public knowledge, the most incriminating evidence is the section on the evasion system, which had been pasted into the 1up guide with a few reworded sentences. Discussions are ongoing at Gaming Age Forums (with 1up members defending the writer of the guide) and DoA Central. Perhaps the most interesting bit about this is that just a month or two ago, Dan Hsu from EGM and 1up had famously written an editorial criticizing shady ongoings at other publications." I've reread the different pieces, and while I think the DoA Forums are a large basis of work, people need to read Kate Turabian's on how to cite research because I don't see this as plagiarism in the whole - just poorly cited. Update: 01/23 22:20 GMT by Z : 1up has announced that they've pulled the guide to review the situation.
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1UP, Plagiarizing, and Other Bits of Joy

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  • by PrinceAshitaka ( 562972 ) * on Monday January 23, 2006 @09:18AM (#14538330) Homepage
    I agree, That is what I was taught plagerism was, using someones ideas without citing them.

    Using copyrighted material is entirely different from plagerism. Plagersism is about not giving credit to the source.
  • Plagiarism (Score:3, Informative)

    by gonerill ( 139660 ) on Monday January 23, 2006 @09:24AM (#14538357) Homepage
    I don't see this as plagiarism in the whole - just poorly cited. Copying something without properly citing or crediting its course is the definition of plagiarism.
  • Re:Movelists? (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 23, 2006 @10:42AM (#14538969)
    Nope, it's movelists - As in lists of moves, for fighting games. It probably shouldn't be one word admittedly, but it certainly isn't novelists. ;)
  • by analog_line ( 465182 ) on Monday January 23, 2006 @11:59AM (#14539533)
    I believe the essential sarcasm of "Other Bits of Joy" has passed you by. =)

    As to your other points...

    "Ironically, I believe the inventors of those combos (the programmers and authors of DoA) would be the sole owners."

    No, the move lists are facts. It isn't violating copyright or plagiarism to tell the world that "down, down-forward, forward, punch" makes Ryu and Ken throw a fireball in Street Fighter 2, no matter how many billions of other people have written FAQs with that move listed there. It is a fact. Facts cannot be copyrighted, only the presentation thereof.

    From the strategy guide in question:
    "Dragon Elbow
    Jan performs a back-turn attack that hits mid and is extremely fast. But if it whiffs or is blocked, Jan will be highly vulnerable for a free throw or a combo."

    The name of the move ("Dragon Elbow") is, I am presuming, a fact. Most modern fighting games have in-game movelists with names associated, or have a name associated in the manual. If the writer of the manual/in-game movelist called it that, it's a fact. The move itself ("P+K") is a fact as well. What would be plagiarism is copying without attibution, the description of what the move does, and the commentary on its usefulness.

    "Furthermore, who do you give credit to? The forum owners? The owners of the posts?" and later, "And how do I know that this material wasn't ganked from some other website without my knowledge?"

    Whom did you directly pull the text from? That is who you give attribution to. You are not responsible for the plagiarism of other people. Yes, you can plagiarise other people's plagiarism. Yes, it is just as bad.

    "If it's the owners of the posts, how do you acquire their real names? Should I be writing "Taken from a post by worksucks69 at DoACentral"

    Yes, you should be attributing it to whatever "nom de plume" the author you are quoting wrote it under, or give the URL of the forum post it was under if there are multiple authors at the very least. If you are embarrassed by the source you are quoting, your only other choice is to find a less embarrassing source, not lie about who or what the source is.

    "What are you to do if you want good information from a forum but it is in no way credible?"

    If the information isn't credible, why, by all the gods, are you even considering passing off suspect information as your own?
  • Re:Evidence? (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 23, 2006 @12:18PM (#14539733)
    "Helena Can avoids Most attacks, except low mids, and low attacks. "
    "Helena Can't avoid low mids and low attacks."

    "Lei Fang - Avoids most attacks with proper timing, not good against mid kicks. "
    "Lei Fang must have good timing to avoid most attacks, but is horrible against mid kicks"

    "Class B- These are characters who can evade alot of single blows, and evade some attacks within strings."
    "Tier 2 characters can evade a great deal of single blows, and even some attack strings."

    "Class C - These are characters who can evade only a select few blows(high and jumping attacks), and evade hardly any attacks within strings. "
    "The characters Tier 3 are limited to evading a few highs and jump attacks, and can barely evade any attack strings. "

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