I got to review an edit today that wanted to add a citation to an answer. Said answer was a verbatim copy of a program from another website, without citing it. I went and checked it out and it was true. (I've obviously accepted the edit but it hasn't gone through yet.)

Is this allowed (i.e. copying a program from a site and posting it as your solution)? Is there a policy on this? I've searched on meta but couldn't find anything.

While I'm at it, how should people go about posting stuff from other websites (if at all)? It could be relevant from time to time. (i.e: this person on that site has done this better than anyone can: like so).

(I don't really want to call out anyone and I'm new to meta so I've not posted a link, will post the link if you guys want me to.)

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If it is not your post:

  • Certainly apply proper citations and attribution for content under licenses that require them. I'd say also for code for which no license is specified.

  • Certainly bring copied content under restrictive licenses to the attention of the moderators (we'll pass it on to the the team).

If it is your post:

  • Personally I would not use someone else's code for my answer on CodeGolf.SE.

  • If you are going to use someone else's code, then make sure you have the right to do so, comply with the license and admit that it is not your own up front.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ It is not my post (just to be clear). \$\endgroup\$ – marinus Nov 18 '13 at 2:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ Also, you're a mod. Can I somehow force the citation edit to go through? Should I send you a link (privately perhaps)? (To be clear: it's not my code that was stolen either.) \$\endgroup\$ – marinus Nov 18 '13 at 3:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yeah. I approved the edit. \$\endgroup\$ – dmckee --- ex-moderator kitten Nov 18 '13 at 3:07
  • \$\begingroup\$ You respond fast! Have 15 points :) \$\endgroup\$ – marinus Nov 18 '13 at 3:24
  • \$\begingroup\$ No points on meta sites except for meta.stackoverflow. But I will cherish the check-mark. \$\endgroup\$ – dmckee --- ex-moderator kitten Nov 18 '13 at 3:25
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    \$\begingroup\$ I would add that if posting someone else's answer (because it's so elegant that you have to share), flagging it for CW is good etiquette. \$\endgroup\$ – Peter Taylor Nov 22 '13 at 3:35
  • \$\begingroup\$ I just noticed a second answer that the same guy had quietly borrowed from me, a year earlier. I've submitted a second citation edit. (A third, to question 242, is too short and obvious for any one person to claim credit for.) I doubt I'm the only person thus honored, but I'm too lazy to check. It occurs to me that this site ought to award a "Plagiarist" badge, though I guess it would be hard to automate. \$\endgroup\$ – Daniel Cristofani Nov 22 '13 at 10:18
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    \$\begingroup\$ @DanielCristofani That's not a good idea. Badges are supposed to be awarded for behaviours we want to encourage, not discourage. \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Jester-Young Nov 25 '13 at 2:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ Sorry, I was being ironical. \$\endgroup\$ – Daniel Cristofani Nov 25 '13 at 23:00
  • \$\begingroup\$ (The guy edited both answers again on Nov 29 to make him look less like a plagiarist. He currently has 1,953 reputation on this site, and 68 badges. This is suggestive regarding the value of this site's reputation system, and the strength of your desire to discourage plagiarism.) \$\endgroup\$ – Daniel Cristofani May 9 '14 at 22:29

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