A common issue encountered by editors is overlap of text with an author’s own previously published work, particularly with the increasing use of plagiarism detection software. This practice is known as ‘text recycling’ (also sometimes referred to as ‘self-plagiarism’). Opinions on the acceptability of text recycling vary greatly and it can be a challenge for editors to know how to deal with it once it has been identified.
In response to this uncertainty, the biology and medical editors at BioMed Central, in collaboration with COPE, have developed a set of guidelines to help editors handle cases of text recycling. These can be downloaded from here