Plagiarism hurts! It is a stain. It is a fraud. You must avoid it at all costs. But unfortunately, plagiarism is a growing concern. It is a big concern in both the business and the academic world.
Also, if you try to copy someone else’s original work and try to pass it on as your own, you can get into trouble – legal trouble! Try and avoid that.
The questions are:
- What is plagiarism?
- Are there different types of plagiarism?
- How can you avoid plagiarism?
- What are the best tools for checking plagiarism?
I am going to answer all these questions in this writeup. So, stick with me and read till the end. The knowledge you are going to gain today from here is going to help you in the long run.
So, without wasting time, let us start our journey.
What is Plagiarism?
Plagiarism is a ‘wrongful appropriation’ of someone else’s work. It is a process in which you imitate someone else’s work and try to pass it on as your own without give the due credit to the original creator or author.
It can span over stealing someone’s idea, expression, thought, and language. You can steal someone’s written work (poetry, story, novel, etc.) or other works such as photography, art, etc.
You can even steal music, videos, and much more.
So, when you present a work as your own, while in reality, someone else is the creator, you are engaging in plagiarism.
This is a blatant practice, and it hurts the original owner in many ways. Financial loss is one of the losses.
In the world of websites and blogs, plagiarism is a widespread phenomenon. In certain instances, a few things do not fall under the scope of plagiarism. For instance, WEBSITE A has a collection of famous quotes.
You have a website – WEBSITE B – where you are free to publish the same quotes in the same order. It does not matter as long as both WEBSITE A & B are offering credit to the original person who authored the quote.
For example, this is not plagiarism:
“Winter is coming.” ~ Game of Thrones
This is a famous quotation, and anyone can put it in the way I did. In fact, many people have already done it before I used it here. But I am not plagiarizing anyone’s work. For this quotation, I gave due credit to the original HBO TV series.
Now, if I copy some text from some website and do not give credit to the website, that will be plagiarism.
Are There Different Types of Plagiarism?
Of course, there are several types of plagiarism, and you should be fully aware of each type. This will help you ensure that you do not perform the fraud. Here are the different types that you must know:
- Accidental Plagiarism: Inadvertently omitting to reference the source work, misquotation, and so on. In other words, you forget to give credit to someone’s work you are quoting, or you incorrectly give wrong credit to someone else.
- Direct Plagiarism: It is intentional by nature. In this form, you copy someone else’s work word-by-word, and you try to pass it on as your own work.
- Outsourcing Plagiarism: It is the form in which you ask someone else to write on behalf of you. That third-party can be freelance writers, essay writing companies, your friend, or one of your family members, and so on. Essentially, someone else writes and you pass it on as your work as a part of a previously made arrangement in which you may pay the person writing to give up all rights.
- Patchwork or Mosaic Plagiarism: This is the form where you quote someone else, but you do not use the quotation mark. Or you just change the wording of the original work while keeping the structure of the original work.
- Self-Plagiarism: Yes, this is a type of plagiarism in which you accidently produce a work that is influenced by one of your previous works.
How Can You Avoid Plagiarism?
The simple answer is not to copy. The extended answer is to ensure that you can cross-checking your work with other sources to eliminate instances of copied work. This will, however, require specialized tools, because you need to check across multiple sources. Manually doing that is not always a viable option. You need a powerful tool that can scan hundreds and thousands of other online sources to check for hints of plagiarism and inform you with a comparative display so that you know exactly what has been copied.
What are the Best Tools for Checking Plagiarism?
Lucky for all of us who write, there are dozens of tools available that help us to check for plagiarism. Some are amazing, some are moderately powerful, while some are just pathetic. Again, some are highly expensive, some are very low-price options, and there are others that are free.
In this segment of this blurb, I am going to walk you through the best plagiarism checkers that exist in 2022.
Remember, when I say, ‘the best plagiarism checkers,’ what I am doing is proposing a list to you that is based on my practical experience with these tools, and of course, my own evaluation of each. So, the list practically reflects my notion, and it can be severely different from other lists that you come across.
So, let us begin.
#1. Copyscape – Old is Gold [Low Price Option]
Copyscape happens to be my all-time favorite. Yes, it has an archaic interface, and it won’t show you side-by-side comparisons. It will, however, show you the texts that are copied from other sources. Still, I love it, and I highly recommend it. You can call it a bias. I don’t mind.
It is one of the oldest players in the market, and it never bothered to change the interface. I have seen it in action since 2008, and I have literally spent thousands of dollars on it. Yes, I am a premium user, and for a good reason.
Here is what you get with Copyscape:
- Super-fast plagiarism checker. It can detect plagiarism in seconds.
- It comes for a very low cost. It charges $0.20 for every 2000 words you check.
- It offers a WordPress plugin that you can use for checking plagiarism for the website copies/blog posts you write.
- It allows not only copying and pasting the text to check for plagiarism, but even allows you to check plagiarism for online content. You just need to paste the URL, and it will check through Google’s search results to find any match.
- It allows creating a private index in which, whenever you create a new content on your site, it will automatically be checked for plagiarism.
- If you have a premium version of Copyscape, and you want to check a website with a bunch of posts, it can check your site for up to 10,000 pages. That’s a lot. Not many websites have 10,000 pages.
- It supports all languages except Japanese kanji, Korean hanja, and Chinese hanzi.
- If you do not want to pay for it and you want to check your online content, you can paste one link at a time to get the job done. Unfortunately, the free version will not allow you to copy and paste text into the plagiarism checker if you want to check content that is not yet online.
Yes, free version is available, and as said, you can use it only for checking content that is already online.
There is no mobile application available. This means you are restricted to using it only and only on your desktop. There is no desktop app, either. So, to use it, you should use it from your web browser. Absence of a desktop app makes sense when you have limited hard disk space on your computer, or when you do not want to install any additional program on your computer.
Copyscape uses a credit-based system. You can buy credits worth $10 (minimum). Once your credits expire, you can buy again. For every 2,000 words, it will charge you 20 cents. That is quite a reasonable price considering that Copyscape is one of the oldest and one of the most powerful plagiarism checkers to exist today.
#2. Grammarly – Extremely Powerful & Expensive – Great for Students & Teachers
Grammarly is essentially a powerful grammar checker tool. In fact, it has evolved into the most powerful grammar checker tool that exists today. It has quite a few tricks up its sleeves, and one of them is paraphrasing sentences (at times). The other great trick it performs is checking for plagiarism.
Grammarly, as a whole is a great app for students and teachers or anyone in the academic field. That, however, does not mean that people outside of the academic industry cannot use it. I use Grammarly for checking grammar and fixing other writing errors. Its plagiarism checker is also an extremely powerful tool that best works for checking academic papers.
However, you can check just about any document you want using its plagiarism checker.
- Grammarly has native applications for Windows and Mac. So, you can just copy and paste your document on the app’s window and check for plagiarism.
- Grammarly also has a web interface that you can use for checking plagiarism.
- Grammarly checks your work for plagiarism by comparing it to its massive database of 16+ billion webpages. Yes, it is their database. They do not scan Google for checking plagiarism. This, however, doesn’t go well with me. New web pages keep adding every second. I don’t know just how quickly Grammarly updates its database.
- Plagiarism checker is available only to the premium users. Free Grammarly users do not get to use this feature.
- Grammarly does not put a limit on the number of words you can use for plagiarism checks.
- They have a Microsoft Word plugin that allows you to check for grammar and plagiarism directly from your Word document. You need to sign in using your Grammarly account to activate the Word plugin.
- Grammarly also has Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox extensions. However, these extensions do not offer plagiarism checkers.
- Grammarly plagiarism checker (and the entire Grammarly application as a whole) is meant only for English. No other language is supported.
There is a free version of Grammarly available, but it does not perform any plagiarism checks.
Mobile application is available for both iOS and Android. But they are only designed for checking grammar, tone, spelling, etc. They cannot check for plagiarism.
Grammarly is quite expensive. If you go for a monthly recurring plan, they will charge you $29.95 a month. If you opt for their quarterly payment mode, you need to pay at the rate of $19.98 a month and pay up front for an entire quarter. There is a yearly plan available that will cost you $139.95 a year (breaks down to $11.66 per month).
#3. Plagiarism Checker X – It Goes Supersonic (Not Literally)
I should be honest. I really find it difficult to choose between Plagiarism Checker X and Copyscape. Both and wonderful, to say the least. There are thousands and thousands of dedicated users of Plagiarism Checker X across the world. The program is known for its high speed. But what makes it different from others is that it can allow you to bulk check multiple documents at once. That is a great relief if you have many documents to check.
- It gives a side-by-side comparison window so that you can quickly see a comparative view of the plagiarized work.
- It compares your work against 16 billion results from different web pages across different search engines.
- It supports bulk comparison in which you can check multiple documents at once against a single repository or multiple repositories.
- It is superfast. It can check 20,000 words within a second.
- Whatever content you submit for checking is not saved anywhere, making it safe for those concerned about privacy.
- It has support for seven languages that include English (of course), French, Spanish, Dutch, Portuguese, Italian, and German.
- It also does not put any word count limit. So, your document can have thousands and thousands of words. That’s perfectly fine.
- Plagiarism Checker X has an Android app, too apart from its web application.
Yes, they have a free version with severe restrictions.
Yes, they have mobile applications available, but only for Android users. They also provide a desktop application that you can download and use. Unfortunately, the desktop application works only and only for Windows. There is no dedicated Mac or Linux version available.
The pricing part of Plagiarism Checker X is the best part. It does not have a subscription package. You can purchase the product for a lifetime use with a very low-price tag. There are three options. The first one is the free basic version that limits the number of words you can check. Next comes the Professional version that costs $39.95 for a single user license. Finally, there is the Business plan that costs $147.95 for a 5-user license. For the paid plans, you get free maintenance for 1 year.
#4. PlagScan – You Will Need a Big Fat Wallet
Sure, PlagScan is a powerful plagiarism checker, and there is no second thought about it. It is just as powerful as the three I already mentioned. However, you will require a big fat wallet to keep using it continuously. I will soon get to the pricing segment. Wait for it.
As far as its efficiency is concerned, it is truly fast. It can get you the results within seconds and even allow you to scan, compare, and upload – all at the same time, making it quite an efficient option.
- Allows scanning, comparing, and uploading – all at the same time, saving a lot of time for users.
- It accepts all languages except for Japanese, Korean, and Chinese.
- You can check your webpages for plagiarism simply by pasting the URL.
- It offers a Plagiarism Prevention tool. Yes, it is a product they offer.
- It is entirely online. So, you do not need to worry about downloading and installing anything.
- They have a free version available, too, that can scan up to 2,000 words without a charge.
- They have servers located in Germany. So, you can rest assured that they are GDPR compliant.
- It offers structured reports on plagiarism checks, making it easy for you to spot the instances of plagiarism.
Available, but it is restricted to only 2,000 words of scanning. Anything beyond that will not be scanned until you pay.
They do not offer any mobile application. They do not even have any desktop applications. It is entirely web based.
This is where everything gets terribly nasty. They have different pricing tiers. The first one is for 6,000 words, or a 24-page document and it costs $5.99. The next one is for a 70-page document, or 17,500 words and it costs $12.99. The next plan they have to offer is for a 160-page document, or 40,000 words, and it costs $24.99. Finally, they have a package for a 400-page document, or 100,000 words, and it costs $49.99.
That is an outrageously high price for plagiarism checks.
They even have business plans available, which are also based on the number of pages you want to check with each page having no more than 250 words. The minimum price for this starts at $17.99 a month for 200 pages. This is the Lite plan. Then comes the Professional plan that costs $19.99 a month for 200 pages plus API access. Finally, there is the Enterprise plan that costs $22.99 a month for 200 pages, API access, private repository, and custom training.
Honestly, the pricing of PlagScan is outrageous. Never in my wildest dreams will I pay such kind of money, especially when there are far cheaper options available with exceptional capabilities. No wonder, there are not many takes of PlagScan despite the fact that it actually claims to check a million pages a year.
#5. Plagiarisma – Dated Interface but Free of Life
If you do not want to pay anything for plagiarism checks, Plagiarisma is your best option. Yes, despite being free, it is a powerful option that you can use. It is primarily a web-based application that can be used from any device that has internet access.
What is interesting is that they do have an application for Windows users that can be downloaded and installed. However, the application supports only Windows 7 and Windows 8. I have no idea of who uses them in today’s world, especially when Windows 11 is out there, already rolling out!
- It supports a wide range of documents. You can check HTML, TXT, XLSX, PPTX, DOCX, DOC, FB2, EPUB, ODT, PDF, and XLS files. Honestly, I have not seen other programs supporting so many document types.
- It allows loading documents directly from Google Drive. Or you can individually upload documents.
- It can check individual URLs, too!
- There is a copy and paste option (if you prefer doing that). It will allow you to check your document against both Google and Bing. However, the option for checking with Google is available only and only for those who register with the platform. Anyone not registered with the platform will have to satiate with only Bing checks.
- It has support for 190+ languages.
The platform is entirely free, and you can register for free. It is ad-supported. So, you can expect to see many annoying ads.
Forget that! There are no mobile applications, and even the desktop application is restricted for only Windows 7 and Windows 8. Pretty useless, I must say!
You do not need to pay a dime for using this application. Just visit the website, register for free, and start using it. That is all! Be warned, though! The website doesn’t not have a secure connection. It is not https enabled. So, make sure that you are not checking any confidential file using the program.
#6. Scribbr Plagiarism Checker – Pricey as Hell
Scribbr Plagiarism Checker is a joint venture between Scribbr and Turnitin. Turnitin is specially designed for academicians, and it is a completely paid service for checking plagiarism in academic works. For those who want to have Turnitin-like power, but aren’t exclusively in the academic circle, they can turn to Scribbr. This platform will check your work against 91 billion live and archived pages to check for your content’s integrity.
- It is incredibly easy to use. Just upload your document and run the check. Do remember that the only supported document types are Word and PDF.
- It checks for plagiarism against online content, archived content, books, journals, etc.
- It gives a thorough plagiarism report, allowing quick elimination of plagiarized content.
- It allows adding missing citations and helps you rewrite your text.
- It comes with something called Own Sources Checker. It allows you to check your paper against your own unpublished or private document collection.
- It has support for over 20 different languages including Norwegian, Croatian, Polish, Serbian, Arabic, Turkish, Russian, and more. Of course, English is a supported language.
- It provides advanced controls using which you can exclude certain databases, alter the threshold for minor matches, ignore quotations, etc.
- They won’t add your document to their database. So, your privacy is safe.
- It is quite slow and takes up to 10 minutes to check 25,000 words.
Be disappointed! There is no free version available. So, you must pay to use it.
Scribbr Plagiarism Checker is entirely online. There are no applications for mobile devices or desktop devices.
This is going to be painful!
- Small documents (maximum 7,500 words per document) – $19.95 each document.
- Regular documents (between 7,500 words and 50,000 words per document) – $29.95 each document.
- Large documents (50,000+ words per document) – $39.95 per document.
Yes, I can feel your pain. It hurts! That’s too pricey. But hey, for academic documents, you better not take any risk! For bloggers and copywriters, Scribbr Plagiarism Checker is a strict NO!
#7. Quetext Plagiarism Checker – Yet Another Free Option
It is easy & simple. It gets the job done. No fuss! They do have a paid plan available, but unlike Dupli Checker (the next item on list), they did not create a puddle of pricing plans. I really liked their approach.
The free checker (and even the paid version) is an online version. You can use it through any web browser.
This plagiarism checker is built especially with students in mind, and it allows creating citations. Quetext also comes with a color grading system that highlights the similar or exact matches in your scanned documents.
- It is free with DeepSearch technology that can do in-depth analysis of the documents you upload.
- They use ColorGrade for providing feedback.
- They have conditional scoring features, and even provide contextual analysis.
- It checks up to 2,500 words per search for the free version. The paid version can check 100,000 words per search.
- It is a web-based application that can be used from any web browser.
The free version is forever free. You don’t need to pay a dime for using it.
There aren’t any. They do not even have a desktop application. It is all web-based, and they intend to keep it that way.
The pricing structure is simple. There are just two plans – Free and Pro. The Free plan is, well, free! The Pro plan costs $9.99 a month per user. That’s it. There are no other plans. Only the Pro plan has the citation generator feature and the DeepSearch feature comes in an extended version in this paid plan for more thorough searches.
#8. Dupli Checker – Free with Stringent Word Limits Per Search – Paid Plans Available
If you are looking for an entirely free plagiarism checker, Dupli Checker is a powerful option. However, it does come with some stringent conditions. For starters, the free version will allow 1,000 words per search. So, if you have a very large document to scan for plagiarism, you have to perform repeated searches. This can be annoying!
- There is a search box where you must paste your content and hit the check button.
- It allows uploading documents with the same word limit. Different document types are supported. You can upload .tex, .txt, .doc, .docx, .rtf, .pdf, and .odt.
- There is an option for checking a webpage as well. You just need to paste the URL in the provided field and search it for plagiarism.
- It is a web-based platform. So, you must use it with an internet-connected web browser.
- It supports multiple languages including French and Dutch. Of course, English is supported by default.
Yes, it is a free version. However, there are paid plans available in case you want to use it.
There is no mobile application. There is no application for desktop devices. You must use it on the web.
Here comes the dreadful part. They do have paid plans that will allow you to search up to 10,000 words at once. The pricing plans are based on the number of words you want to search. There are a hell lot of other confusing features that dictate the pricing. That is not really the bad part, though. The disgusting part comes when you need to choose from the large number of different plans available.
It starts from Basic II to all the way up to Basic X (2 to 10). What about Basic I? Well, that is the free plan. Then they have Pro I to Pro X (1 to 10). Then comes Institute I to Institute X (1 to 10). Then they have Enterprise I to Enterprise X (1 to 10).
Thus, in total you have 39 paid plans to choose from. Then they also have custom pricing options available.
The only reason why I have placed Dupli Checker so down in the list is its excoriatingly painful pricing structure. Life is already complex. I always prefer something less complex with at least pricing plans.
#9. CopyLeaks – Real Advanced with Ability to Scan Images with Texts Using OCR
CopyLeaks is a powerful plagiarism checker application that is available only in web version. What is interesting about CopyLeaks is that not only it checks for exact copies of texts or portions of text, but it can even identify paraphrased content. Paraphrasing in the world of academics is outright criminal. That is going to get you into some serious troubles. However, you can always do that in the case of websites and blogs. It really doesn’t matter that much. However, you should still strive to give original content.
Yet another astounding feature of CopyLeaks is its ability to use OCR (Optical Character Recognition) to scan for text in images.
- Offers a free plan and paid plans.
- Scans for texts on images using OCR.
- Detects blatantly copied texts and even finds paraphrased content.
- Allows uploading documents in different formats including docx, pdf, doc, and more.
- Allows bulk scanning of up to 100 documents at one go.
- Neatly organizes reports in folders.
- Allows side-by-side comparison of texts.
- Allows creating a private repository of private documents to be used as a database for checking future documents.
- It also allows LMS integration for educational organizations and academics.
Yes, it has a free version that allows scanning up to 5,000 words.
Forget it! It only offers the web interface for conducting plagiarism checks.
They have different pricing models for Academia & Education and Business & Enterprise. Both categories allow free plans with a 5,000-word limit. Then comes the pricing plans. For those in Academic field, the minimum pricing starts at $9.16 a month for a yearly billing cycle and goes all the way up to $566.66 a month for a yearly billing cycle. The price is determined by the number of pages or words you want to scan per year.
For the business sector, the minimum price starts at $8.33 a month on a yearly billing cycle and goes all the way up to $483.33 a month on a yearly billing cycle. Again, the price is based on the number of pages or words you want to scan.
They also have custom pricing options available.
#10. Plagly – A Powerful, but Free Plagiarism Checker
Plagly is a completely free online plagiarism checker that can check your content against 20 billion sources online. It is intended for students, teachers, and even SEO professionals. What is interesting about Plagly is that its algorithm updates every day, ensuring that you get really accurate results for each search you conduct.
The program can find duplicate content like a pro, and it even comes with a Natural Language Processing technology that can not only check grammar and help you to fix them, but also find the original source of the plagiarized document.
- Instantly highlights duplicate content.
- Updates algorithms every day.
- It also offers various free tools that can be used by students, teachers, and SEO professionals.
- Offers API access.
- Uses Natural Language Processing algorithms for detecting grammar mistakes and plagiarism.
- It supports over 20 different languages.
Yes, Plagly is free. But there is a Premium version, too. Even the premium version has a limit of 1,000 words per search. That is ugly!
Also disturbing is that the free version will only highlight the plagiarized text. That’s all. It will not tell you anything else. You don’t get any detailed report.
Plagly offers an Android application. It is available through Google Play Store without extra cost.
Plagly is free. However, there is a premium version that will cost you $20 a month. The discounted price is $9.99 (and they always seem to have this discount). The premium version won’t let you check anything unless you attach your credit card and pay. If you are taking a free trial, you still need to attach your credit card, and that is purely disgusting!
Are these the only plagiarism checkers available? Not really! There are more! There are options like Plagium, PaperRater, iThenticate Plagiarism Checker, Free SEO Tools’ Plagiarism Checker, and more. You can use them and check their efficiency. The list here gives you all the best options that you can have. I highly recommend Copyscape, Grammarly, and Plagiarism Checker X provided you are not in the academic industry. For those in the education field, Scribbr Plagiarism Checker is the best option, but also a very expensive one. Choose wisely!