I have a bit of a dilema...

Discussion in 'TM Lounge' started by trumpet blower88, Jul 10, 2005.

  1. trumpet blower88

    trumpet blower88 Mezzo Piano User

    Jun 15, 2005
    Flagstaff, AZ
    So for my english class last semester, one of my requirements was to write a poem and send it into a competition thingie. I wrote poem about how a peom is written, and it whent on to be one of the top 100 that was entered, so they wanted to publish it in the litle book they do every year.
    I also submited this poem onto a website, one of those litile "teenage poetry" websites, I don't know why I did, I was in a dorky giddy mood that day or something. Anyways, when I turned it into the website company, I used a pseudonym 1) because I don't like useing my real name on the internet, and 2) because I'm a fairly secretive guy and don't like people knowing I have a sensitive side, haha.
    Anyways, I got a letter back from the publishing company that wanted to publish my poem. But they can't, because when they ran it though all the plagerism systems my same poem poped up from that website. Since I used a differant name they think I just found this other persons poem on the internet and coppied it.
    So I have a few problems:
    1. My parents are mad because they also think I copied it and I just made of this story to cover my butt.
    2. The publishing company won't belive my story so they won't publish it in the book.
    3. I think my english grade is final, but if its not, theres a possibility that it can be lowerd. (by the way, I earned an A in that class perfectly fairly and it would suck if they lower it...)
    4. I don't know the leagle laws about it, but if they try to send me a fine or pull some leagle bull crap on me then that is bull crap!

    So yeah... just a litle rant about something that p---ed me off recenlty. Why is it so hard to trust a teenager? I'm not like other teenagers and my background shows that. I mean, I'm an Eagle Scout for cryin' out loud, an Eagle Scout wouldn't pull that kind of crap!

    There is seriously something wrong with society...
  2. MahlerBrass

    MahlerBrass Piano User

    Oct 1, 2004
    Houston, TX
    That sucks man, unfortunately I don't think there's any real way to prove you didn't do it, unless you maybe have the entire history of sites you've gone to on your computer that date that far back. I know there's several times that I've written a paper and in the middle of writting I've found a source that has almost to the tee what I have written down already, maybe not exact, but close enough to look like I copied it, and this is something I've never seen before. I hope this mess get all worked out for you, it would be horrible if they lowered your grade over this, afterall, they did make you enter the contest, which seems odd to me to begin with, best of luck!
  3. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

    Sep 29, 2004
    Is it just me or is there anyone else that has noticed the incredible irony of that post?

    88, forgive me. I just find the irony of someone not being believed about doing something such as you did to be... well, funny because of the many misspellings, basic grammar errors, and typos you let go by before you pressed "submit". Using the highly technical term "thingie" just put it over the top for me. I'm not saying you lied at all. In fact, I believe you. It was just one of those things that went bad and now it's just a lesson learned. From now on you'll post your poetry with pride under your name and not a pseudonym.

    It was just funny, that's all. My guess is that when it comes to schoolwork you operate under a higher standard than 'net posting requires (does it require any?). I hope you can sort of see the humor in it. If not, please forgive me.

  4. Rgale

    Rgale Mezzo Forte User

    Jun 16, 2005
    I must second Manny on this. I am not trying to be rude , but please try to do better on the spelling and grammar in the future. It's just the teacher in me coming out. Mea Culpa.
  5. dizforprez

    dizforprez Forte User

    Nov 2, 2003
    cant the web site you sent it to just do an IP check and clear all of this up?
  6. Double_G

    Double_G Pianissimo User

    May 4, 2005
    Gordonsville, TN
    I don't really know what to tell me blower. But, I can tell you one thing; you do need to clean this mess up. If you don't you could get sued...and technically you would be sueing yourself, but still any lawsuit is a bad thing.
  7. rjzeller

    rjzeller Forte User

    Mar 7, 2005
    Rochester, MN
    A few things:

    1) The irony is deep but I don't mind it at all. There are published authors (bestsellers and hugo award winners) who post typos all the time when they participate in chats. So be it. Of course, since your post does have to do with potential publication, ML has a very good point!

    2) Presumably you've written this on your computer first. Take the the file date of the original and compare it against the date the webiste lists for the posting -- I assume the site lists the date you presented it, most of them do -- then you parents and teacher at least should know it was truly yours.

    3) Write a new peom, show it to your parents and teacher first, then post it under your psuedonym. Since presumably only you have the right password for that profile, only you could post a poem under it. When they see that, they should have no reason to doubt you (unless you're a grade-A hacker).

    4) Write the publishing bit off. Publishing companies are notoriously fickle, and do not like to stick their necks out for anyone or any reason. Theirs is a low-profit industry where only a small percentage of books truly makes a resonable profit. They are not going to take any more chances than they have to. If they see something that's already been published -- and in most cases a public web page is analoguous to publication in their minds -- EVEN IF IT WAS UNDER YOUR NAME, they very often will NOT publish it. Webzine authors (of which I am one) run into this all the time. They come up with a story or serial that sells, they write or compile it into a book, and the publishing house dumps it the instant they find out it had already been published. It doesn't matter if it was in print or not. You usually can get away with printing the first 10-13 lines of a piece, but beyond that you can forget it. And with poetry the limits are usually only a line or two, maybe a stanza.

    As far as they're concerned, the work is already published.

    I say forget about it. If you've truly got the talent, you'll come up with another poem to publish and yet others to post. And if you're not talented enough for that, then chances are you're dealing with one of those "poetry.com" scam companies that are just out to get you to buy their book, in which case you're better off not publishing with them anyway...

    my 2 pennies....
  8. trumpet blower88

    trumpet blower88 Mezzo Piano User

    Jun 15, 2005
    Flagstaff, AZ
    Thanks, I never even thought about doing that before. That should work to get my parents to belive me. I don't think I'm going to have to worry about dealing with my teacher again 1) I'm pretty sure the grades are final. And 2) She retired after this year anyway, so I don't think she even cares to mess with it if she found out.

    Sorry about the spelling and grammar and everything. I'm really bad at actual writing and stuff, I'm just really creative so I can come up with the poem, but have a hard time writing it out the right way. Normaly I would write things out on Microsoft Word, and run the spell check, then copy and paste them on here. But on this computer I have all my music stuff and I don't have enough room for a good word processor.

    So I'll try harder!
    Thanks for all your advice on this though, hopefully I can get it straightend out.
  9. Manny Laureano

    Manny Laureano Utimate User

    Sep 29, 2004
    Thanks, 88, for not taking things the wrong way. It wasn't a knock at all, just an irresistable chance to point out a bit of irony. Beware spell check! It may leave misspelled words like "principle" and "principal" unchecked because it doesn't understand the context you're in.

  10. NickD

    NickD Forte User

    You aren't really anonymous...

    Yo, 88!

    Whenever you sign up for any sort of web site, don't you have to submit your personal info, including a valid email address? To join TM you had to do that. You could point out to the outfit accusing you of plagerism that the email address is propely matched to your identity. Also, as mentioned, your IP ought to be able to help in this regard, too.

    I agree with the post that says you should clear this up. If you brush this off and move an, writing some new material, there could still be doubters. In fact, have your folks HELP you with sorting this out.

    As to the typos; yeah, they caught my eye, too. I can relate to you, though. I am a terrible typist, and I have to read, re-read and re-re-read my posts to correct types and grammar. Even with that, I miss things. Then I go back and edit them, if I spot the goof before the post has been sitting there too long.

    I know that when you are posting things to ListServs and Forums you can be in a hurry. However, these things are not like "conversations," though they may feel like it at times. You can cultivate a conversational feel without making your posts look as though they were carelessly conceived. Does this make any sense? I hope it does.

    In any case, I BELIEVE YOU! Get it cleared up, and you'll feel better, IMHO.



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