I want to sell some of the essays/papers that I have written for classes (that I have taken in high school and in college) to a website (ex: http://www.universitip.com/). Could this backfire? 

Expert Answers
William Delaney eNotes educator| Certified Educator

You surely must realize that the vast majority of the students who buy term papers from these internet paper mills are going to submit them as their own work without making any changes. No doubt you would not get into any trouble legally--but do you really want to get involved in something that is undermining the whole foundation of education?

What about your own conscience? You are obviously a very bright student with a good future ahead of you. You show that you are an honor student and on the dean's list. Is it worth it to tarnish your own mind and memory by cooperating with these internet enterprises which are sordid and sleazy no matter how attractively they present themselves on their websites.

Evidently they don't buy the papers anyway; they just act as brokers and pay you a portion of what they collect for your work--if and when they sell it. In the meantime they've acquired joint ownership of your property. They can solicit more and more papers for their storage facilities because they get them for nothing.

There have always been students who turned in papers they hadn't written--but now it is getting to be an epidemic because of all the electronic gadgetry that make it so easy to download and--let's face it--to cheat. Do you want to participate in helping and encouraging students all over the U.S., Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Great Britain, and elsewhere cheat on their homework?

The teachers aren't fooled. They are just being overwhelmed. They can recognize plagiarism and boilerplate papers, usually because the writing sounds too good to be true. You could probably protect yourself by keeping your identity secret--but do you want to start down that slippery slope, first by selling your term papers, then by remaining anonymous, and then what? Why not go whole hog and start writing papers on demand? You shouldn't have to split the proceeds fifty-fifty with some internet service when you can make a profession out of manufacturing papers for students who are too lazy to do their own work. The only thing to prevent you is your own conscience, your own self-respect.

If you were my daughter I would feel proud of you. I would also advise you not to get involved in this shady business. By asking, "Could this backfire?" you are showing you realize there is something crooked about the whole thing.