Plagiarizer’s head on a plate

I just wanted to clarify that when I asked for a plagiarizer’s “head on a plate,” I meant that I wanted the plagiarizer’s handlers to sever the person from his/her job immediately. I.e., that the person who stole my content and pretended it was his/hers should be summarily fired, and that I would be somehow alerted to the good news. The phrase has been in circulation since approximately 50 A.D. (when the Gospel of Matthew was written, I gather). To anyone who speaks idiomatic English, “bring me his head on a platter,” indicates that somebody else should punish a person in some dramatic, public way. It doesn’t mean I actually wanted their head on a plate and shipped to me. Note that all of this is boring and obvious in the United States (where I live), and I’m making this post just in case there are people in other countries who might have thought I was being serious. The lawyers at Arnold & Porter are based in Virginia, by the way. (Or at least the A&P lawyers at the Virginia office are in Virginia. The other 8 branches of the firm are elsewhere.) Virginia is in the United States. So when they claim that their client feared for his/her life, they were being humorless and/or disingenuous (that’s obvious, actually).

About Colin Purrington

PhD in evolutionary biology • twitterinstagram
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One Response to Plagiarizer’s head on a plate

  1. By the way, I don’t normally ask for heads on plates. When somebody plagiarizes me I start with a much friendlier request. But in this instance it was the 3rd or 4th instance over the past couple of years … and I’d lost my patience. I’ll up my meds.

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