washington post

Cut And Paste Is A Skill Too

[Update: Keith pointed out that my small disclaimer at the end isn’t clear enough. This post is copied, stolen, cut and pasted in its entirety from Keith’s blog, ISTP Dad. I was glad to learn of the story, and this was meant to be ironic and funny.]

An editorial in the Washington Post is explicit about a topic close to my heart: students think plagiarism is fine, and teachers (high school? college?) realize that there’s not much point in assigning papers if they expect 100% original work.

…the educational system needs to acknowledge what the paper is today: more of a work product that tests very particular skills — the ability to synthesize and properly cite the work of others — and not students’ knowledge, originality and overall ability.

The comments on this editorial are worth a read as well. Not everybody agrees with the sentiment.

(Cut and pasted verbatim from ISTP Dad.)

A Library For All Peoples

In a Washington Post column last week, Librarian of Congress James H. Billington proposed A Library for The New World:

[T]he time may be right for our country’s delegation to consider introducing to the [UNESCO] a proposal for the cooperative building of a World Digital Library. This would offer the promise of bringing people closer together by celebrating the depth and uniqueness of different cultures in a single global undertaking.

And in this time of war and strife, what makes such a proposal so important?

Libraries are inherently islands of freedom and antidotes to fanaticism. They are temples of pluralism where books that contradict one another stand peacefully side by side just as intellectual antagonists work peacefully next to each other in reading rooms.

And I can’t think of a better message to start the holidays with.