Origins of the 21 gun salute - Give credit where credit is due.

Ian’s answer:
The army’s answer:
Strikingly similar answers, wouldn’t you say?
The army wrote theirs in 1969.
I think that you should give credit where credit is due.

I’d say they’re “strikingly similar” because facts are facts. If anything, Ian’s answer is more complete.

While Ian’s answer does contain information not in the Army’s response, I wouldn’t necessarily call it “more complete,” considering what he left out.

But that’s not the point. Facts, as you say, are facts. Sentences and phrases copied verbatim, though… that’s called plagarism.

You might want to get your own facts in order before you make such accusations. No sentences are copied verbatim, while two are, in your original words, strikingly similar. You do raise an interesting point, though. Did you e-mail Ian with your suspicions?

Army in bold. Ian in italics.



Eh, it just looks like High School Term Paper-style “rewriting” to me. If I were grading his paper, I’d take off half a point for “not terribly creative rewriting” (“wrote it on Sunday night, huh, kid?”), but I’d give him half a point for all the extra information he included that his source didn’t.

Overall, pretty good term paper. And at least he handed in something halfway readable, which is more than some kids did… :smiley:

I feel obliged to remind y’all that Staff Reports are NOT columns by Cecil. Staff Reports need not be original research, but can rely very heavily on already published or available sources. Thus, the “high school term paper” is not an inappropriate comparison.

Some Reports go far deeper than that; others don’t. It depends partly on the question, and how readily the answer is available from primary sources.

Lots of Staff Reports “crib” a phrase here and there (or even a few sentences) from other sources. We usually cite the source nowadays, but the earlier Staff Reports didn’t necessarily do that.

Okay, smarty pants (all you smarty pantses) - how would you present the information and word it differently? Give it your best shot and see if you can do better.

And have any of you tried to research the info yourself? Can you find any versions of the history that are not direct rip-offs of the Army fact sheet? I mean, if Ian could only find 50 different copies of the same version of the information, how much variation can he really include?

And let’s not forget that the Army’s answer may well be a compilation of earlier stuff also.

Whoa! It looks as if the Navy borrowed in toto from the Army or vice versa.