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The Play on Plagiarism

Wikipedia defines Plagiarism as the "wrongful appropriation," "close imitation," or "purloining and publication" of another author's "language, thoughts, ideas, or expressions," and the representation of them as one's own original work.

And this is what Mr. Sotto did.  Plain and simple.

Various networking sites seized on it and talked about it for weeks.

Even Illustrado’s author Miguel Syjuco  gave a piece of his mind on Sotto in a New York Times article:
Mr. Sotto forcefully denied responsibility rather than confessing and offering an apology. When Ms. Pope blogged her dismay at being plagiarized, the senator declared on Filipino TV: “Why would I quote from a blogger? She’s just a blogger.” His chief of staff, Hector Villacorta, told reporters that blogs aren’t copyrighted, governments are exempt from copyright laws, and parliamentary immunity protects the senator. Besides, the Philippines “plagiarized the U.S. Constitution,” he said. “Even our image was copied from God. We are all plagiarists.”

And he did it again with Robert Kennedy’s 1996 speech “Day of Affirmation”.

Image from

I do not mind borrowing as long as you give credit where credit is due.  And there is nothing wrong with translating as you are actually getting the idea across to a greater audience.  The problem is with claiming it as your own.

Do not worry Mr. Sotto, we do not expect brilliant and original thoughts from you.  And while you might have fooled the Filipino people in electing you, please do not insult their intelligence further by denying your wrongdoing.

We expect our leaders to be decent, honest and trustworthy.  But I guess that is too much to ask for.

But I shall thank you for an entertaining show.

For how can you not laugh at a man who sheds crocodile tears while proclaiming his innocence and insulting “mere” bloggers whose ideas he copied without permission?

Seems like the Senate has birthed another “Drama Queen”

And while on the topic, here is a link of Tito Sotto as part of TVJ singing about what else?  Family Planning!


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