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Unread 25th August 2009, 12:21 PM   #1
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Default Textbroker.com

I received this message in my textbroker.com mailbox today and it seems totally crazy!!! This guy is threatening me with a lawsuit because the article he wrote for me was posted on dozens of article directories.

Of course all article directories list the author of the article as the one who submitted it, so my name appears on the article as the author.

I thought textbroker.com articles we yours once you paid to have them written...i mean...isn't that the whole point?

Is this some sort of scam???

================================================== ======

"Hello,

I am assuming that I am communicating with Matthew Rizos of Chesterfield MO. If this is in error I apologize. In any case, a text that I sold to this client I.D., "article title?" has appeared in numerous places around the internet with an author credit to Matthew Rizos.

Plagiarism is concerned with the unearned increment to the plagiarizing author's reputation that is achieved through false claims of authorship.

That appears to be the case here. Textbroker and an attorney near me both say this is a "gray" area. That means juris prudence is light at the moment.

I sold the rights to the text, and waived my right to claim authorship. Legally and Ethically, this does not entitle any other person to claim authorship, with or without my consent. If you like the text, I am pleased that you were satisfied with my work. I cannot go along with another claiming authorship. To me, if I did, it would be suborning plagiarism and anything else that went along with it.

A person named Matthew Rizos did not write that text. I never agreed to sell my work for any unethical or illegal purposes. I never agreed to let anyone else claim authorship.

We can save a lot of headaches if we can work this out amicably. All I want is for the author credit to go away. A copyright notice is proper, this client I.D. did buy the rights of ownership. There is nothing in the Terms of Service I can find in either the Author's or Client's section that allows anyone to claim authorship.

Please respond and share your thoughts on this with me. If this is not Matthew and you have no idea of how his credit got attached to the text, disregard this. I have his information and will contact him another way.

Thanks,

================================================== =======

Here is the second email:

Hey Mat,

Thanks for getting back to me so quickly. I understand what happened. If I am to understand your position, it's that the computer did it and you have no control over the situation.

That's unfortunate. There are circumstances you are not aware of and forces at work here that far surpass a rookie copywriter trying to learn the trade.

Suffice it to say that if it gets formal, it won't be on my dime or under my direction. This puts me in a very awkward position as Ned granted me permission to sell the text as an interview understanding that my name would not be on it. He, like myself, never agreed to convey the right to claim authorship to anybody else.

Now I have to go back and report that it was an automated account setting type of situation. If there is anyway that you can edit those settings and repost it may be a good idea.

Claiming authorship of purchased work is now a Terms of Service Violation at Textbroker, coincidentally that happened after this situation came to the attention of the legal department. Going forward you won't be able to use that system.

Since you seem to be telling me there is nothing you can or will do, I will contact an article directory or two. Hopefully this all blows over. If there is anything you can do to rectify the situation on your end it might be a good idea. Personally, I don't like seeing somebody else's name on something I sold - but I would rather not deal with this at all.

Hopefully I can make this blow over and won't have to contact you again.

Thanks,
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Unread 25th August 2009, 12:40 PM   #2
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Default re: Textbroker.com

It's kind of annoying but I'm afraid it's true. Unless the author expressly allows you to add your name to the content then you cannot claim it as your own, although you can do what you want with it. You can read the specific terms and conditions here:

Quote:
1. This Site grants and licenses to the customer the sole and exclusive right to publish, perform, display, reproduce, distribute, create derivative works and sell the delivered and approved text / article in any type of media, including, but not limited to, print and/or online media, in whole or in part, via all electronic, online, or any other media, now known and hereafter developed, throughout the world.

2. The customer does not have the right to call himself/herself the author of the text/article. The customer can only place his name on the article with the express written consent of the original author.
I use textbroker a lot and have 1 regular author who does all of my site work and some of my article work, I have an agreement with him that all work he does will be re-published by me, possibly under my own name. I would advise lasing with an author before ordering the work and ensuring they will allow you to re-publish across article sites.

I'm sorry this isn't what you were hoping for but I hope it helps a little to answer your question.

Ben
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Unread 25th August 2009, 12:40 PM   #3
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Default re: Textbroker.com

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrizos View Post
I sold the rights to the text, and waived my right to claim authorship. Legally and Ethically,
Sold the rights to the text and waived his rights to claim authorship, so what exactly is he complaining about now?

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrizos View Post
this does not entitle any other person to claim authorship, with or without my consent.
This doesn't even mean anything
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Unread 25th August 2009, 01:11 PM   #4
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Default re: Textbroker.com

The e-mailer is correct, you bought the text but TextBroker doesn't transfer the right to claim authorship. You must clear that first by including it in your requirements.
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Unread 25th August 2009, 01:12 PM   #5
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Default re: Textbroker.com

Wow! Ok, time to start deleting that article then. Lesson learned, thanks guys.
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Unread 25th August 2009, 01:16 PM   #6
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Default re: Textbroker.com

If you don't appreciate the way you were approached, I'd let the writer know that you will be taking down the articles and ask him kindly not to bid on any future writing requests from you.
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Unread 25th August 2009, 01:20 PM   #7
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Default re: Textbroker.com

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Carl Kelly View Post
If you don't appreciate the way you were approached, I'd let the writer know that you will be taking down the articles and ask him kindly not to bid on any future writing requests from you.
I agree, I think the way he approached you was brash and rude in some respect, there are ways and means of going about business online and his is not one of them.

It's an easy mistake to make, it wasn't done deliberately so don't worry too much.
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Unread 25th August 2009, 03:44 PM   #8
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Default re: Textbroker.com

Make sure to tell him you are banning him from ever writing for you again, because he is being really stupid over a cheap article. It's not like this article would have ended up published in Time or something. How much did he get paid for it? $3? $5? Surely he has better stuff to do with his time than bitch over a 5 buck article. You should tell him that.
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Unread 25th August 2009, 03:50 PM   #9
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Default re: Textbroker.com

Now I know not to use textbroker.com for article writing. I wouldn't pay for anything actually what wasn't "work for hire" agreement. That means that you own the work completely to do with as you please after payment.

It's pretty ridiculous to have an article written for you and to think that "their" name would go in the resource box. Sort of defeats the whole purpose of article marketing.
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Unread 25th August 2009, 04:13 PM   #10
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Default re: Textbroker.com

Ok I am trying to understand this. If the writer can't claim authorship and the buyer can't claim authorship, then who the h#$$ is the author? And if
the writer can't claim authorship what can he sue you for? you aren't breaking copyright law, maybe breaking TOS of textbroker.com. But if you
can't claim authorship how can you do anything legally where you would have to claim you were the author and your rights have been violated? Legal gray area? Seems black and white to me.

This seems a little messed up and just makes me want to avoid textbroker at all costs.

-Todd Sampson
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Unread 25th August 2009, 05:24 PM   #11
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Default re: Textbroker.com

Quote:
Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post
Now I know not to use textbroker.com for article writing. I wouldn't pay for anything actually what wasn't "work for hire" agreement. That means that you own the work completely to do with as you please after payment.
Oh, it is work-for-hire all right. It's just that all of the rights go to the 'site'. Within their TOS, the author gives up everything for the benefit of the 'site owner'.

All of the wording on the front page of the site, and on the author page, seems to say that they are licensing their property ( the author's output ) with restriction. They're not acting as a broker, but as the owner of the information.

I'd run as far away from these people as possible.
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Unread 25th August 2009, 05:45 PM   #12
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Default re: Textbroker.com

I have bought articles through Text Broker. I think we should all express our outrage to them ASAP. This is ridiculous.

I agree with sbucciarel. It does defeat the purpose of article marketing, and I know Text Broker must know that this is what lots of people are doing with the articles they buy.
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Unread 26th August 2009, 12:49 AM   #13
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Default re: Textbroker.com

Quote:
Originally Posted by Taylor French View Post
I have bought articles through Text Broker. I think we should all express our outrage to them ASAP. This is ridiculous.

I agree with sbucciarel. It does defeat the purpose of article marketing, and I know Text Broker must know that this is what lots of people are doing with the articles they buy.
The best way to express your outrage is to not use them.

"When your phone doesn't ring it will be me not calling."
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Unread 26th August 2009, 01:05 AM   #14
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Default re: Textbroker.com

Hi folks,
Christina Zila, manager at Textbroker, here. We take copyright transfer very seriously. We have always transferred the copyright to our clients (in the author TOS, clients are referred to as Textbroker's licensees, see more on this below).

Our original Terms of Service addressed the copyright aspect of things: the buyer could publish the article in every form anonymously. Originally, most of our work was SEO-optimized articles that are published on the buyer's webpage without authorship, much like a marketing brochure is printed without a byline. Authors have previously asked if it was ok for clients to put their own name on articles. At the time, there was nothing in our TOS expressly prohibiting doing so. When clients inquired about the situation, we recommended they mention it to the author to avoid this type of situation.
As our service, search engine optimization techniques and online marketing have evolved, even over the course of a year, usage of the items ordered has changed.
After consulting with our lawyer in this specific case, the copyright issue is still the same: the buyer has all rights to publish the article anonymously. The issue of authorship is separate from a copyright. For example, artists who do covers of songs still have to acknowledge that the song was written by someone else in their liner notes. If the buyer wants to use their own name, then they have to get the permission of the author, either in advance, by making it part of their order ("by accepting this order, you agree that the buyer can use their own name on this article"), or contacting the writer afterwards. As I mentioned, at the beginning, most orders were being published anonymously. Since the problem has arisen, we have taken the necessary steps to ensure compliance with the law as well as protect both authors and clients. The TOS for both clients and authors has been updated. Authors are alerted that they give up all legal, moral and ethical right to have their name published on the piece submitted.
Our Terms of Service state:
VI. Grant of Rights to the customer
1. This Site grants and licenses to the customer the sole and exclusive right to publish, perform, display, reproduce, distribute, create derivative works and sell the delivered and approved text / article in any type of media, including, but not limited to, print and/or online media, in whole or in part, via all electronic, online, or any other media, now known and hereafter developed, throughout the world.

NEW: 2. The customer does not have the right to call himself/herself the author of the text/article. The customer can only place his name on the article with the express written consent of the original author.

(As mentioned above, the consent can be embedded in the order)

The Author's TOS includes:
V. Rights concerning texts and articles
The owner of this Site shall have the exclusive right to register copyright of said texts and articles in the name of the owner of this Site or any licensee of the owner of this Site upon first publication. You, our clients, are the licensees. We do not keep the copyrights, but transfer them directly upon payment to you the client.

2. The right to create derivative works includes, without limitation, changes to the author's texts and/or articles in any way or form. You agree that we or our licensees are allowed to create said derivative works and publish, perform, display, reproduce, distribute, and sell them without restriction.

NEW 3. The author waives any moral or personal right to be named as the author of his/her texts or articles.
Please note that these Terms of Service apply to the author, not the client. In these items, the client is the licensee and has full legal copyright to the orders filled.

I appreciate your opinions on this subject and am happy to answer any further questions you have in this regard by private message or direct e-mail.
Best regards,
Christina Zila
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Unread 26th August 2009, 02:12 AM   #15
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Default re: Textbroker.com

your terms are stupid, most people purchase article for publishing with their name only. there are thousands of writers giving all rights to buyers cheaper than you.

i will post in all forums your stupid terms and telling people to avoid you.
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Unread 26th August 2009, 11:02 AM   #16
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Default re: Textbroker.com

Quote:
Originally Posted by Taylor French View Post
I have bought articles through Text Broker. I think we should all express our outrage to them ASAP.
Outrage over what? The fact that they publish a very clear and understandable TOS and people fail to read it?

Not sure I follow the "outrage" part.
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Unread 26th August 2009, 11:07 AM   #17
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Default re: Textbroker.com

Quote:
Originally Posted by textbroker View Post
Hi folks,
Christina Zila, manager at Textbroker, here. We take copyright transfer very seriously. We have always transferred the copyright to our clients (in the author TOS, clients are referred to as Textbroker's licensees, see more on this below).
Christina:

So far, I have found Textbroker to be the most reliable, most reasonable, and highest quality for the money contract writing service I've ever tried. I will continue to use your service, and I will also continue to make it clear in my orders that I require the ability to use a byline other than the writer's name on each article.

Thanks for the detailed explanation.
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Unread 26th August 2009, 02:06 PM   #18
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Default re: Textbroker.com

I think the author of this article is being really petty - they have sold the article and copyright. To pursue this is ridiculous imo
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Unread 26th August 2009, 05:15 PM   #19
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Default re: Textbroker.com

I have to thank Christina Zila for taking the time to stop by, create an account and address this issue.

While for some, the claiming of authorship may be expected it is as has been specified here, the copyright is transferred but unless specifically at time of requesting an article.

It is clearly spelled out in the terms of service and since day one I request that all articles I have written must allow the claim of full authorship and release all rights to the work upon completion and acceptance.

I have had literally hundreds of articles written by these good folks and have an excellent working relationship with many authors all around the world using this service and the timeliness and cost effectiveness has been nothing but amazing.

You will find that if you request this up front then you will have no problems.

It may seem petty for an author to complain like this but the rights are legally his for the original authorship. In this case I would either request that he relinquish his rights as "Implied" and move on or remove his articles and ask that he does not bid on future article projects unless he will allow you to claim authorship.

The problem really lays in a perception that Textbroker offers a PLR writing service, which it is not. However, like I say, if you request that up front you will have no problems what so ever.

Just 2c from an article marketer who purchases about 100 articles a month from these guys.

All the best

Sean Donahoe
The Manic Marketer
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Unread 26th August 2009, 05:52 PM   #20
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Default re: Textbroker.com

I couldn't agree more! Just use 99centarticles and be done with it! haha. Not only do they not mind you submitting to article directories, they'll even do it for you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sbucciarel View Post
Now I know not to use textbroker.com for article writing. I wouldn't pay for anything actually what wasn't "work for hire" agreement. That means that you own the work completely to do with as you please after payment.

It's pretty ridiculous to have an article written for you and to think that "their" name would go in the resource box. Sort of defeats the whole purpose of article marketing.
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Unread 2nd May 2010, 07:54 PM   #21
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Default re: Textbroker.com

I am so glad I read this thread before I used their service.
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Unread 2nd May 2010, 08:58 PM   #22
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Default re: Textbroker.com

Quote:
Originally Posted by MrDay View Post
I am so glad I read this thread before I used their service.
Me too! Whilst the TOS are clear, it does seem kinda silly to publish articles with an anonymous author.
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Unread 3rd May 2010, 08:35 AM   #23
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Default re: Textbroker.com

I guess I'm pretty dense but don't these two statements run against each other? To me what so many are saying is cut and dry is about as clear as mud.

This applies to us as the customer:
Quote:
2. The customer does not have the right to call himself/herself the author of the text/article. The customer can only place his name on the article with the express written consent of the original author.

http://www.textbroker.com/us/client-tos.php

And this applies to the authors:
Quote:
NEW 3. The author waives any moral or personal right to be named as the author of his/her texts or articles.

http://www.textbroker.com/us/author-tos.php

Sooo....the customer (us) can't use their name as the author without permission from the original author...but the original author "waives any moral or personal right to be named as the author of his/her texts or articles"

The original author can't claim to be the author and the client can't claim to be the author?

Bwuh?
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Unread 3rd May 2010, 10:47 AM   #24
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Default Re: Textbroker.com

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeremy Wilson View Post

The original author can't claim to be the author and the client can't claim to be the author?

Bwuh?
Thats what you get when you have a lawyer

Protected both ways. They are just being proactive. As long as you add "You agree I am paying for the right to put my name as the author of this article" to your article order you are ok.

People can sue for anything. Some writers feel like artists and when they see you are making money with THEIR article they get bent out of shape. The fact that you paid them already and are the customer is lost when the ego gets in the way.
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Unread 5th May 2010, 07:22 AM   #25
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Default Re: Textbroker.com

This is crazy. What did the writer think - you are going to pay him for his work and then make him 'famous' (sic) by putting his name all over the article directories?

It should be obvious to any writer that when they are writing as work for hire that the buyer would be using it with a new name. I think that is covered in the standard templates at renatacoder at least.

It's easier just to give textbroker a miss from now on - there are some great writers in the 'Warriors for hire' section anyway and they all should understand how it works...

Cheers

Fraser
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