Today on SocialPositives.com, we are doing a comparison between Unplag and Grammarly. Almost everyone knows Grammarly for its writing enhancement features. But there is something on top of that, it is plagiarism detection. The truth is that few individuals or educational institutions purchase Grammarly accounts because of this feature alone. Still, it is always curious to know what such add-ons can do and if they are as handy as some of the existing plagiarism trackers.

One of such online services created especially for checking text originality is Unplag. The Unplag team has been active lately by posting about new system updates in the LMS communities (since Unplag is used by academic institutions as well). The good news is that some of these upgrades have been made for individual users too.
Unplag vs Grammarly
Since Grammarly accounts are purchased mostly for personal use, it makes sense to compare its checker with Unplag by outlining the features available for individuals. So, let’s dig deeper into details.

Sources Scanned to Spot Similarity

The scope of sources that can be scanned by the checker is of great value. It often becomes a number one criterion when it comes to choosing the right tool.

As for Grammarly and Unplag, they both check documents against online sources. Though there are some things that differ them. Unplag scans documents only across up-to-date sources and returns a far more extensive list of matching sources than Grammarly does.

Unplag also allows a user to create one’s own database with previously written works and keep them inside the dashboard. By doing so, the user can choose to check a file across both the internet and personal database. This way, it’s possible to avoid self-plagiarism and make sure that a newly composed text is absolutely unique.

Reports Delivered After Checking

Grammarly works like a real-time editor. In other words, it checks a text for plagiarism while a user is typing it. The only thing needed is to enable plagiarism detection in the tool settings. It is quite handy since you don’t need to click the check button every time you introduce some changes into the text. Besides, Grammarly suggests citation samples for every matching piece of the checked content (in MLA, APA, and Chicago).

There are a few essential things that Grammarly reports are missing though. Namely, matching content found on web sources isn’t highlighted. That’s why it takes extra time to spot the match. The checker doesn’t provide a full list of sources and most importantly doesn’t allow altering similarity search settings.

Since Unplag primary function is to detect similarity, its functionality is a bit more extended. Unlike Grammarly, its settings can be changed. You can skip sources with trivial matches and auto-exclude citations and references. As a result, you receive more precise originality percentage and more filtered links leading to matching sources.

Simplicity in Use

Both checkers are simple-to-navigate. No instant support or training is needed to make the most of all available features.

Grammarly and Unplag allow adding files to their dashboards differently, e.g. via drag&drop or standard file upload function. But in contrast to Grammarly, Unplag supports folder/zip file upload too and allows arranging files in folders.

If you are fond of multitasking and need to run several checks at a time, again Unplag can come in handy. It is even said to successfully perform checking in the background mode. So, if a user accidentally logs out, there will be no need to restart the check.

Security of Papers Checked

This is where Grammarly’s statements may sound rather dubious for a user. On the one hand, its Terms of Use say that

“By uploading or entering any User Content, you give Grammarly (and those it works with) a non-exclusive, worldwide, royalty-free and fully-paid, transferable and sublicensable, perpetual, and irrevocable license to copy, store and use your User Content in connection with the provision of the Software and the Services”.

So, one may think that Grammarly does it for two purposes: create its own internal database and enable its users to check new uploads across this database. For now, the checker doesn’t perform such scans.

As the Unplag team asserts user security for them is highly important. To avoid copyright violation, Unplag doesn’t store full-text copies of the uploaded content, it simply uses its index. Besides, a user can decide on his own whether he is willing to contribute a text to the Unplag global index or not. For that, a user may navigate to the system settings in his account and enable the Sharing files option.

Let’s Sum It Up

It seems to be obvious. To choose the right tool, you need to clearly define your goal. Whatever software or service you come across, there is hardly a tool on the market that would be equally good at doing everything at once.

Thus, if you need to make your writing style more consistent and check spelling or grammar, the right tool for you is Grammarly, of course. But if you need to ensure a paper or article you created is unique, take advantage of Unplag. Anyway, before any decision is made, it’s always good to connect with the support team and dispel your doubts.