Are You a Copy and Paste Ninja?

Should we even view it as a bad thing

You tend to learn a lot about yourself when talking to other people. This is also true when looking at how other developers code. One thing I've noticed more and more is the army of copy and paste ninjas out there. If you're not familiar with that term, it's a developer who uses random pieces of code they found on the internet to fix all their problems. This by itself isn't always a bad thing. To be fair copying and pasting code is pretty normal in the developer world. Using forums like Stack Overflow to get answers when you're stuck, is vital to our community. It becomes a bad thing when you have no idea what that code does.

I think we've all been guilty of this at some point. The real question is, what is the difference between developing and pasting. Some of the best projects out there have used lots of copied code. Think of all the jQuery plugins out there for starters. Is there an issue of morality with copy and paste coding? Should we even view it as a bad thing, or should it be seen as a resourceful person, speeding up their workflow by taking products that already work. Would you hire a developer who has built several great projects with mostly copied code?

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