Controversy about text recycling

However, some arguments may also be presented in favour of recycling one’s own texts.

First, some have claimed that authors cannot steal from themselves, particularly addressing the term ‘self-plagiarism’ as an oxymoron.

Second, the reuse of particularly well-formulated expressions of standard methods, disclaimers, or even nuanced theoretical positions could arguably be justified. Several scholars have contended that ‘there are only so-many ways’ to phrase a particular idea or notion. Nevertheless, even in such cases a reference to an earlier work can be added easily. In addition, some authors claim that reusing one’s own work is unavoidable, especially in small research fields in which authors build on their own line of research (Chrousos et al., 2012). In this case, especially introductory sections and parts of the methodology would need to be rephrased in every new article, which may be considered an unnecessary burden on researchers time (Scanlon, 2007).

Publishing similar results for different audiences has also been presented as a justification for reusing previously published material (Nijkamp, 2015; Samuelson, 1994).