After the media had initially plunged on the topic of plagiarism and the traction of these messages subsided, was quickly found the next headline: Did Gutenberg may have his work written by a ghostwriter?
Against all speculation and almost certainly – No!
There are not many qualified ghostwriters to whom Mr. Gutenberg could have gone and if he had been there, there would have been no Gutenberg case and probably the subsequent hype about plagiarism. That he has turned to a windy low-cost provider for cost reasons, may also be excluded.
So the only realistic alternative left is that he wrote the work himself as he wrote it. In my opinion, he made a mistake, which is occasionally found among non-scientists. Not everything you collect and what fits well into your own work may also be taken over easily. Here often the professional practice is transferred 1: 1 to the supposedly own scientific achievement and this leads to such cardinal errors as in the case Gutenberg.
Anyone who is accustomed to interrogating knowledge in a concentrated manner from other, mostly subordinate, positions and presenting this knowledge to the public or to customers and clients as their own know-how, gradually loses the feeling that it is actually foreign (quoted) Knowledge is acting.
No bill is drafted by the competent minister alone, for which he draws on the know-how of an entire ministry and, if necessary, other external experts. Nevertheless, he represents to the outside “his” design. Nobody would come up with the idea of accusing a minister of writing away his bills from others. What is common in politics and the economy, however, completely contradicts the scientific code of conduct.
It is precisely this missing or abraded sensibility to foreign knowledge that has been doomed to some prominent doctoral students. To accuse them of intentional deception and deliberate copy & paste falls short and ignores the environment from which these doctoral students come from and their everyday use of third-party knowledge.