Good writers borrow, great writers steal.
— T.S. Eliot
Food blogging is an area where plagiarizing someone else’s work is very easy to do. Let’s take macaroni and cheese. No one holds a trademark on it, so ingredient lists are not unique or special. The recipe as it is written by the person who developed it, however, is. I come up with about half of the recipes that I have published here at Al Dente. The other half come from a book or website. Those works are protected by copyright and, while I do give credit, I’m careful how I use these items because I don’t seek permission from an author or publisher before I use the recipe. Transcribing Donald Link’s recipe for his smoked sausage and pork belly cassoulet, as it appeared in his latest cookbook, would be wrong on so many levels.
If I create the recipe, you will see it listed as “By Jared Paventi.”
If I take the recipe from another source and make a little tweak here or there, you will see it listed as “Adapted lightly from…”
If I take that recipe and change a few things, I will say that is “Adapted from…”
If I make major changes to the recipe, I will say that it is “Inspired by…”