This essay was written by a Korean student in reference to plagiarism from a Korean perspective.
Obviously, Korea has many cultural differences with the U.S. However, this cannot be a reason for committing plagiarism. There is a different background situation in Korea. In the case of Korea, technology was developed first and then, people's recognition of intellectual property rights followed the technology. Therefore, several decades ago, knowledge could not be protected from infringement. Even when infringement had occurred, people who have a right to knowledge did not claim their rights actively. There are several reasons why plagiarism could not be accepted, even though it occurs frequently in Korea.
The first problem is that education about plagiarism is missing. Of course, in these days, most of universities in Korea educate students. However, several years ago, it was hard to find universities where they educated students about plagiarism. Because of that students did not care about plagiarism that much. Professors also did not punish students who copied someone's idea. Not only that, people who have a right to knowledge did not protect themselves. Recognition of intellectual property rights was very low. After several social issues occurred, many people looked back and claimed their intellectual property rights. Through many social issues, Korean students have noticed the problem of plagiarism.
The second reason is that Korea was a developing country before. People always put technology development first rather than any other intellectual things. Development in short time caused many side effects. Sometimes, people who used technology were not mature enough to control technology.
The Internet also has developed dramatically. Because of hi-speed Internet, many other industries have advanced such as online games, portal sites, data sharing sites and so on. There is countless information on the Internet. However, most Koreans were not ready to use this. They did not know how to make relationships with immaterial things. People downloaded music and movies without a cost. Even they did not realize that it is an illegal act. In addition, many students copied their reports on the Internet. The public did not have criteria for a norm for environment of the Internet and immaterial things like intellectual property rights. Korea did not have enough time to look over rights to information before. This could be a reason that the Samsung Galaxy phone cannot grab the #1 position of the Smartphone market compared with Apple iPhones. Samsung did not realize how important software is as much as hardware. However, Apple always focused on both of them. When Hardware is developed with software, it makes a great chance to dominate the market.
As a result, Koreans are weaker at developing software because it is an immaterial thing. This is because Korea has only recently realized the significance of a norm for intellectual property rights. However, the U.S. has spent enough time to reinforce a norm. Most industries come together in the U.S. therefore; America has experienced a lot how to keep immaterial ideas. To take someone's idea without permission is a crime. It cannot be accepted because of cultural differences.