Monday, October 31, 2011


Gladwell explains some of the problems with plagiarism. One of them being even though at times it may seem like plagiarism, there are phrases, or music wise, beats, that are really common and are easily mistakable as being plagiarized. For example, there may be a catchy tune in one song that is similar in another song. Would that be considered plagiarism? No, because in music its just not possible to come up with extremely new tunes without having to incorporate some melody that will be similar to at least one other song.

I believe that plagiarism is a big problem because the term 'plagiarism' has been expanded to be very broad and includes many types of plagiarism such as word for word. Yeah it makes sense why it would be considered plagiarism if someone did that and it was really obvious none of what they wrote is theirs. But have people considered that words can be used over again in same order and people might not realize that someone else has said it already? Words don't belong to just one person; it's not like someone can say, "Roses are Red" and claim that they said it first and anyone else that says it is plagiarizing. That's stupid. If someone says, "This research was done to study the effects of blah blah" and the research that someone is talking about about says that they did the research to study blah blah, would that be considered plagiarism? In my opinion, no. It's a common phrase or combination of words that people use. However, if the writer included an idea that was thought up by someone else, then that is considered plagiarism in my opinion. As I mentioned before, there are some picky rules as to what is considered plagiarism and it has been distorted such that everything can be considered plagiarism.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Chapter 7 Summary!

In this chapter Ronson meets a lady named Charlotte who has a job with TV corporations and finds people who are mad/crazy for shows such as Extreme Makeover and Jerry Springer. She goes on to explain how she has found a way to figure out if people are crazy/mad and a way to talk with them without forming sentimental attachments by making fun of them. In this way, she is dehumanizing them and separating herself from the notion that the person on the other end is an actual human being and has emotions.

I find this chapter very interesting in that it exposes the wicked and manipulative ways in which the media uses people for their entertainment. And I find that very intriguing in that the media has a way to take what a person is saying, and spin it into a whole other story, or at least give a different perspective. However, I do think that what the producers of Extreme Makeover did to Deleese was wrong. If they selected her to have a makeover and went through the trouble (or not I guess) of having her family speak bad of her, they should have had the common to sense to realize that it would have negative effects on her if she did not get the makeover that she was expecting.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Has China committed human rights violations and should they be punished for it? Or, has China committed cultural genocide of the Tibetan people and if so why has the United Nations stayed silent?

These possible questions seem to be full of information because they are issues that are very controversial. I have no doubt that there will be a lot of information pertaining to these topics as well as plausible evidence to support or disprove one claim or the other. However, I believe that China has indeed committed human rights violations as well as cultural genocide. A great example being Tibet. Tibet itself is a controversial issue in which many many world leaders are hesitant to talk about because of pressure from the Chinese. My paper, of course, will be centered around Tibet.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Chapters 4 and 5 Summary

Chapter 4 dealt with Ronson learning what the psychopath test was. He was trying to get in contact with a famous psychologist who told him if that he could come to one of his workshops and meet him there. Provided that he pay for the workshop itself. The psychologist presented people with traits that people expressed that would define them as a psychopath ie: feeling no remorse and being manipulative. Ronson was intrigued by the test and set out to try it for himself. In chapter 5 Ronson met with an war criminal, Toto, living in the U.S. and found that he displayed much of the traits that were listed in the psychopath test, thus reinforcing the validity of the test itself.

I was very intrigued by the psychopath test and found myself wondering if I was a psychopath as well. But, I was relieved to learn that I wasn't when the one of the doctors in the book made a comment to the reader that if they were questioning where they were a psychopath or not, then it means that you are no. Boy was I worried! I thought it was pretty hilarious to read that an ex war criminal who had committed countless number of crimes were forced to stay at home with their mother in the United States.