I don't condone cheating, but I do realise that it IS meant to make it easier. And at the cost of a Slurpee, homework has never been more simple. Many of these websites even have an auction style section where you can place your project up and workers (mostly from India, Pakistan and Egypt) bid for your project. But where is the line? Cheating is meant to be fun and 'naughty' because there is a risk of getting caught, like peeping over at the work of the person next to you, or copying slabs of text and using a thesaurus to change it. But sending off projects to have them completed by somebody you'll never meet? Where's the fun in that?
Other than the fact that students will learn nothing, the problem that schools and universities have with these websites is that it renders their plagiarism software virtually useless. The work being done is original, and most of the offshore workers are graduates themselves which makes these essays not only cheap, but very good. In fact, for as little as around $50 per page, you can have an essay done at PhD level within 24 hours, and that is scary. What will come of the world if future doctors and lawyers can buy their final thesis to pass? Will surgeons have to start paying somebody to operate on us? Okay, maybe a little too far. Sort of.
The problem I foresee with this whole thing is that people studying are either going to get smarter or dumber. It's that simple. For every person that needs an essay written, there will be somebody willing to write it and with that, students can either learn the work so well that they can write an essay on forensic science with their eyes closed, or not bother doing anything and buy their way through. Why would you want to buy your way through a degree just to complete it and still know nothing, you might ask? I don't know. That's why this whole thing is stupid.
It's a concerning issue, not only at ground level, but in the grand scheme of things. Nobody wants to write essays and do homework when you can go out and party and have fun, I get that. But if people are at the age of actually having money to spend on homework, then they should have the maturity to understand that education (especially tertiary) is taken on with the intent of learning. That's the whole point of studying a degree, to learn. And once done, you can apply what you've learned into something of value, which enables you to forge a career you can be proud of and sustain a decent way of life.
So come on students, pay close attention, DON'T buy your homework. It's uncool. Even uncooler than wearing runners with jeans, and I bet the people you'd be paying to do your homework wear runners with jeans anyway, so just stay well away from it.
The opinions expressed in The 7PM Side Project blog do not necessarily reflect those of The 7PM Project or the Ten Network.