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I Never Thought It Would Happen To Me!

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#1 rmccarley


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Posted 05 November 2006 - 07:27 AM

While writing up today's blog post I discovered some of my articles have been pirated without permision or even acknowledgement that I am the author (other people are claiming they wrote it). I know this has been answered before but I'm not able to find it in the site search: what steps do I take to force them to remove the content from their sites?

One of these guys is someone I actually helped a few months ago so my blood is really boiling over this.

#2 DonnaFontenot


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Posted 05 November 2006 - 08:07 AM

I usually start by contacting the person. If he doesn't do anything, I then contact his hosting company. That's usually as far as I need to go, as the hosting company will usually take his site down quickly. (Depends on the country of the host at times). Last resort is to file a DMCA (some will say this is the first step).

#3 JohnMu


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Posted 05 November 2006 - 08:23 AM

Here's a "I'm really angry" approach that I've heard works:

- file a DMCA complaint with the webmaster, the domain holder, the registrar, the hoster, the ISP and Google. Copy + paste.

- often, the hoster will take the site down temporarily

- wait for that and then use Googles Urgent URL removal tool to filter the domain from the index for 180 days

Very important: Secure all evidence. Get a secure and independant source to 1. confirm your ownership / original authoring of the content in question and 2. confirm the other party's unautorized re-use of your content. Don't wait, do that now. Can you prove that you had the content online before they did? Perhaps you can find links to your content, quotes used in blogs, etc etc. Secure all of that -- perhaps even get those people "signed up" as witnesses (that you had the content online on a certain date/time). Getting all of that when it comes down to a court case later on would be close to impossible. Get it now. Get it certified by someone else, if you can.

Just to be clear: you don't want to file DMCA complaints on a whim; make sure that it really is the way you think it is and -- perhaps -- try to clear it up one-on-one beforehand, if you can. If the other party is in the same country as you are, you might be risking a lawsuit if you can't back up your claims.

Another thing: if someone likes your content enough to copy it, perhaps you can turn that into a win-win situation? (on the other hand, if someone knowingly copies your content, they are likely not the kind of person you want to trust with a business relationship...)


#4 Wit


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Posted 05 November 2006 - 08:31 AM

Randy, you have contact info. Take a deep breath and write a polite PM/letter/email.

And in the process: try to turn his feelings of shame into your benefit LOL :whistling:

#5 rmccarley


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Posted 05 November 2006 - 08:38 AM

*sets down baseball bat*


Oh. Uh... I'm going to send him an email later today when I calm down. But since we already had a "relationship" I don't think he'll be very responsive. I really didn't think he would do something like that to begin with so now...

I can absolutely prove it was my content first. :D

With the other guy he is in a different country and I'm not sure what to expect. I suspect his whole site is scraped content.

There is probably more of this going on but when I got mad I stopped looking. I'll have to dig in more later.

Of course I'd like to avoid the legal route if posible. Hopefully all of these scrapers just go away with an informal email but...

#6 DonnaFontenot


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Posted 05 November 2006 - 09:38 AM

Scrapers are a fact of life, I'm afraid. At some point, its not worth the effort to deal with them all. One...worth dealing with. But you may end up finding way too many out there to waste time on eventually. In most cases, scraper sites don't have enough trust value to outrank you, so they really don't matter. Go after the ones that do.

Oh, and if they are using RSS feeds, then that's a case of using only snippets for your feeds, rather than full articles. Helps avoid that problem.

Edited by dazzlindonna, 05 November 2006 - 09:39 AM.

#7 Sorvoja


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Posted 05 November 2006 - 11:44 AM

Unless this is content that you syndicate through a feed I would have just filed a complaint as explained above.

#8 rmccarley


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Posted 05 November 2006 - 04:46 PM

Nope, not a feed. I finally got to sleep (have a head-cold thats been keeping me up). Now I'm going to wake up and send some "Hey pal - WTF" emails. :D

#9 egain


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Posted 08 November 2006 - 09:34 AM

Had a similar problem with an online marketing company recently who "re-worded (I use the word very loosely)" an article I had produced and syndicated via a well known e-wire.

Normally I wouldnt mind but when just one or two words have been amended, and one sentance added to the beginning of the article, and all linkage to the original article taken out, you start to get p***ed off.

Various correspondance with the webmaster has so far failed to yield a response.

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