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Outrage: SCN home page features plagiarized content

Jelena
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

Followed a link for the featured content from the SCN home page to find a "blog" with an article copy-pasted from 'Jon ERP' web site without even an acknowledgement of the source. By the time I got there the author has been shamelessly accepting "likes" and comments for a few days already.

Something seemed off to me when I saw SDN and BPX mentioned and, fortunately, the moderators were quick to act. The content is not available any longer. But how could this even get into the featured content? This is supposed to be creme de la creme of SCN.

Kudos to for still being relevant since 2008, but this incident is beyond outrageous. Simply disgusting. I'd call to Dinesh Kumar to apologize publicly, but Search finds 97 profiles with this name. How convenient...

Accepted Solutions (1)

Accepted Solutions (1)

former_member42743
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

The account should be locked down and banned.  Hopefully that has been done already.

Nice catch by Jurgen to identify the plagiarism. 

I'm not sure I can find fault with SAP however. 

I'm not sure how they can police each and every posting and verify that no part of the posting is plagiarized.  That would require a lot of computer horsepower and even then articles could be changed enough that a simple document comparison wouldn't pick it up.  Some type of fuzzy logic would have to be used.  Not that it couldn't be done but I don't think it's something worth the effort.

I'm not sure an apology is really the answer however.  I would prefer that SAP identify that a person, going by the name Dinesh Kumar and posting from an IP address located in city xyz in country ABC was caught plagiarizing.  A list of such individuals should be maintained here on the site so it can be reviewed by potential employers and recruiters.  Just the facts, nothing more, nothing less. 

In addition, SAP could notify their partners of the existence of such a list and ask them to refrain from utilizing the services of people listed there.

FF

Jelena
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

Fire Fighter wrote:

I'm not sure how they can police each and every posting and verify that no part of the posting is plagiarized. 

Certainly it's not possible to examine every single posting, but how many blogs are featured per month on the home page? 5-10 tops? I only scanned the blog quickly and even then noticed reference to SDN and BPX that haven't existed for quite some time. Wouldn't it at least give a pause to someone actually reading the content to be featured? 

Thank you, everyone, for the investigative work. I am calling to apologize to Jon Reed for steeling the content and accepting praise for it. Although I do agree that this person should be banned from SCN since this is obviously not just an honest mistake.

I would love to hear on this from the community management too. This is where being lenient to the copy-pasters in the forums and Coffee Corner led us to.

former_member42743
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

Yes.  I would agree that if you're featuring a blog or article a higher level of review should be expected.  But if there had been no reference to SDN or BPX would a closer review have allowed a reviewer to identify the plagiarism?

I guess they could take 3 or 4 selected snippets of the text and paste it into a search engine and see if they get any exact matches.  For featured content maybe this should be done.  It wouldn't take long to do a few searches.

FF

steverumsby
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

Every blog I've suspected of being plagiarised has been revealed as such by a very quick google search (and subsequently reported). It doesn't take long. I would expect any featured content to be subjected to such a test, at least in the future now that this problem has arisen, even if there's no obvious reason to suspect it.

Steve.

Answers (7)

Answers (7)

Jelena
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

There could still be points for things like filling in the survey. But it's not the point really (no pun intended). There should be no place for the plagiators on SCN, period. The account should be closed or, better yet, there should be a message placed on it that it's closed for plagiarism, so that everyone would know.

I'm still hoping to hear from the powers in charge of SCN regarding the measures taken to prevent the plagiarized content at least from being featured.

Interestingly - this also crosses paths with the discussion on using pseudonyms vs. real names. Here you go, another example that "real name" doesn't guarantee the results.

former_member181931
Contributor
0 Kudos

Hi everyone,

I'm stepping in here now because the topic has shifted to points, and... here I come! 😉
First of all, thank you all for keeping your eyes open and reporting abuse. This really helps us the SCN Team and the Moderators to do our job. Appreciated!

A few clarifications from my side:

  • Plagiarism is serious and because it has legal implications there is a process in place that and manage together. This process needs to be followed for the case reported above and until it is done the content cannot be deleted, it can only be hidden.
  • Content is hidden after one person reports abuse on the content. This is done automatically. If the abuse report is rejected by a moderator, i.e. content is rejected and goes away, we make sure that an event is triggered to remove the points previously assigned for the content in question. If the abuse report is accepted (content is accepted, stays on SCN), then the points stay.
  • Also, to comment on Fire Fighter - hmmm Craig's remark space leaderboards show points accrued in the last 12 months, therefore currently active members. The personal ranking leaderboard in your own user profile shows lifetime points though, and I think that's fine.
  • And last but not least I cannot comment on the process to feature blogs on the home page, this is not my area of responsibility.


At this stage, this case of plagiarism should be handled by the SCN Moderators in the Moderator space. I will see if I need to report it in the table where we track plagiarism.

Thanks!
Laure

Former Member
0 Kudos

If the abuse report is accepted (content is accepted, stays on SCN), then the points stay.

Above line should be written as:

If the abuse report is rejected (content is accepted, stays on SCN), then the points stay.

I can see that 10 points were deducted from the user's profile because blog post was rejected.

...content is rejected and goes away, we make sure that an event is triggered to remove the points previously assigned for the content in question.

It looks like the points earned for creating content get deducted on content rejection, but the points earned through likes, ratings on that content stay. This is the reason why user has 42 points ( the answer to life the universe and everything ) in social media space without having any content (at present) in that space.

steverumsby
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

I still see 10 points on the reputation tab for creating a blog post in the SCN support space a week ago, even though he has no content at all now. Maybe that's a different problem?

I would say retaining points for likes and ratings on deleted content is a bug.

Steve.

Steffi_Warnecke
Active Contributor
0 Kudos
I still see 10 points on the reputation tab for creating a blog post in the SCN support space a week ago

Maybe that content isn't rejected yet, but just hidden for further investigation.

I would say retaining points for likes and ratings on deleted content is a bug.

I'd say so, too. I got some of my points removed, because the threads/blogs they were added for(likes for my comments there) get removed. Someone wrote (I forgot who, but it was someone from the SCN team or a moderator), that is the expected behaviour. So IMO it should work for this, too, if the content really is removed, not just hidden.

Former Member
0 Kudos

Seeing credited points in reputation, and not the deducted points is a known bug listed in:

Hover card of that space in Reputation > Expertise shows the deduction.

Since the event is fired for deducting points earned through rejected post, and that event did not make correction for ratings/likes points, I also think it is a bug.

Steffi_Warnecke
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

Seeing credited points in reputation, and not the deducted points is a known bug listed in:

SCN Gamification Known Issues

Hover card of that space in Reputation > Expertise shows the deduction.

Hmm, when I look at the expertise card of SCN Support for him, I still see the 10 points added. Maybe Steve meant that.

Former Member
0 Kudos

Agreed. I was only looking at the biggest chunk of 42.

Hidden for further investigation is the only explanation in this case.

Reagan
Advisor
Advisor
0 Kudos

There is a thread opened by which is addressing the quality of the articles created on SCN. Most of them are just copy and paste from external sources and surprisingly some are from the SAP provided guides. Here is the discussion thread.

http://scn.sap.com/thread/3385732

Regards

RB

JPReyes
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

To add to this discussion, the main issue with "missions" is that encourage new comers to build blogs and documents in order to get some bonus points... most of the content been produce is quite poor or copied and the problem is that no moderation is required...

I believe all blogs and documents should be subject to moderation, it was like that in the past and there is a strong case for it to be reinstated.

The bogus content is also twitted instantly which is not good for SCN reputation.

Regards, Juan

Former Member
0 Kudos

In addition, removal of plagiarized content does not have any effect on points earned.

There is no reversal, and that is why the user still has 60 points, all earned by single blog posting, likes and ratings.

JL23
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

..and even his other blog there:http://ddaimons.blogspot.de/2013/08/sap-training-how-can-i-start-career-as.html  is a copy of Jon Reed's http://www.erptips.com/SAP-Consulting/Start-a-Career-as-an-SAP-Consultant.html

The blog is only abuse reported from several people, which makes it hidden, but this abuse report is not yet approved. The point deduction may come with approval of the report

former_member42743
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

Jon is a popular person. 

I took a snippet of his article from here: http://www.erptips.com/SAP-Consulting/Start-a-Career-as-an-SAP-Consultant.html

And I found this article:

http://www.articlesbase.com/information-technology-articles/choosing-your-career-in-sap-consulting-6...

It is not an exact copy of Jon's article but some paragraphs have been used exactly as written by Jon while other paragraphs have been modified with the turn of a phrase or a reordering.  Paragraph 4 is almost a direct copy from Jon's article.  This was "written" by Amol Shinde and it appears to be on behalf of a training firm UWINPro in Toronto, Canada.

FF

Jelena
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

Fire Fighter wrote:

Jon is a popular person. 

Hm, perhaps he should get a good lawyer. Or use it as free marketing and put "The most popular SAP consulting web site to steal from!" on his web site.

Former Member
0 Kudos

Point deduction hasn't happened so far.

Only deduction that I can see is un-liking and unmarking of a helpful answer.

Public apology from the user is unlikely as posts, comments, personal blog posts, profile pic, profile information linking to personal blog, everything has been deleted.

former_member46
Advisor
Advisor
0 Kudos

I'll shout out here to my colleagues for their investigation and needed action  

steverumsby
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

That is clearly wrong. If a blog is removed for reasons such as this (or for any reason?) how can the user retain the points? Is this an SCN bug, a Jive platform limitation or is is deliberate behaviour? Whichever, surely it has to be changed?

I've seen the same thing happen for other plagiarised blogs I've reported, but I haven't yet got around to mentioning it in the space. Perhaps I'll do that now...

Steve.

former_member42743
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

I would imagine removing the points isn't really a concern.  If plagiarism is proven, (as it was in this case), the account should simply be locked down, deactivated and the user banned for life if the actual person is identified.  So if that happens, why worry about the points. I believe that has happened with the account in question.  If it hasn't, it needs to.  In which case who cares about the points associated with the account.

What it appears SAP does not do is to purge inactive or old accounts.  When you review the rankings I often see people with 7000, 8000 points, etc.. whose last log in was back in early 2012 or earlier.  SAP should have a process to remove those folks from any rankings, kind of like the topic leaders where it's a 12 month rolling total.

FF

steverumsby
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

I'd be prepared  to be a little more forgiving - a "three strikes" rule, perhaps. In that case, removal of points would be important. But, yes, once the account is deleted it really doesn't matter.

Former Member
0 Kudos

Some more searching led to only 1 profile, and evidence is still present.

Profile link:

http://scn.sap.com/people/dinesh.kumar44

Profile details have professional blog URL as:

http://ddaimons.blogspot.in

The professional blog's latest article same as the one which is now blocked.

http://ddaimons.blogspot.in/2013/09/market-yourself-as-sap-consultant-too.html

Steffi_Warnecke
Active Contributor
0 Kudos

I'd call to Dinesh Kumar to apologize publicly, but Search finds 97 profiles with this name. How convenient...

Yes, but the link in the featured content entry leads back to just one. ^^

Copy & paste is "in" as it seems. I reported a blog today because it was just a mix from 4 different external sources, that could be found on the internet through google.