I cannot give credit to whoever coined the phrase “credit where it’s due”; I fear that is lost in the mists of time.
It is a common term in education and academia, but it was – and probably still is – more everyday than that, used to divert (often) praise away from oneself and on to someone more deserving, the person who wrote, made, did whatever …
We often use the term in education, one of the reasons for citing one’s sources (at point of use in text), but I am not sure that students are always aware enough of what academic writing is all about to fully appreciate how helpful it can be.
This notion was brought home to me in a recent online workshop. Asked to design a poster or a slide sequence, several participants produced “citations” on the slides which were simply the URLs of the web pages (and occasionally the sites, but not the exact page) of the source of image or text they had used; references listed on the last slide or two also comprised URLs only.
These participants were being honest, saying “this is not mine, this is where I found this text or image” – but it occurs to me that they are not giving credit to the author, designer, photographer or whoever produced whatever it is they are using that is not their own. I am tempted to tell them, “This web page did not write this, that web site did not design that infographic.” And the urge is even stronger when the name of the person or institution is clearly listed on the page or site.
I am going to yield to temptation when this happens, in fact, in my current workshop, I already have.
End of rant.