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Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Students Sue Turnitin for Copyright Violation

The Christian Science Monitor (4/10/2007)
reports that four teenagers from McLean High
School in Virginia have sued the antiplagiarism
company, Turnitin, for copyright violation.

According to Kevin Wade, Sr., the father of one
of the plaintiffs, "The suit is not about plagiarism;
it's about the school forcing the students to turn
their work over to a for-profit company." Critics
such as Wade claim that Turnitin violates copyright
law because it doesn't seek the permission of student
authors to make their papers available to school authorities.
According to the article, plaintiffs are also concerned
that parent company, iParadigms, may claim a right to
sell the Turnitin database and its contents.

Several intellectual property lawyers interviewed
for the article indicated that both sides have compelling
arguments but, if the case goes to court, "it could come
down to a 'fair use' judgment call."