Will They Steal Your Content? Of Course. That's What Thieves Do.

50 replies
Dear Warriors,

First, my greetings to you. Haven't posted much in the past year because I've been busy performing research, creating content and building Blogs. I've missed you, though. :-)

Mostly I've been writing about Ponzi schemes -- from the Bernard Madoff case to various cases involving autosurf Ponzi schemes.

During the summer of 2008 -- as my Mod days here were winding down -- there was considerable discussion about the theft of articles. Some people in IM simply license themselves to steal content and convert it to their own use. An article marketer, for instance, may work hard to educate, enlighten and inform his readers -- only to see his work stolen and perhaps plastered on multiple websites. The thieves then monetize the content, which often is republished verbatim without so much as a back link.

It wouldn't be right even if it did include a back link. It's not "Fair Use" to harvest entire articles without express permission and republish them elsewhere -- even with a back link.

Theft of content is insidious for a number of reasons. Perhaps the primary one is that its puts authors of original content -- authors who bear the expense in time and money of creating information readers rely upon to keep themselves informed -- in the untenable position of working so thieves can prosper.

The thieves harvest the content and slap it up anywhere they please. Some of them are criminally smart, which is to say it's not easy to reverse-engineer the theft. Beyond that, it takes time and money to chase after thieves. The world is a big place. They could be anywhere -- or they could making you think they are somewhere they are not.

A theft at one of my Blogs was particularly insidious earlier this year. I'll spare you the details of the roadmap the thieves used, except to say it was devilishly simple and brutally effective. Basically they stole my content (100 percent verbatim, including headlines) and my traffic. In doing so, they demonstrated both their criminal genius and their laziness.

Their unspoken message was crystal clear: "Your content is on the Internet. We've licensed ourselves to steal it and republish it verbatim. We don't care how you feel about it. What's important to us is that we get a steady supply of free content through your labor, and we know how to make money with it. Don't bother trying to catch us. We're well aware our conduct is brazen, but you won't find us. Even if you decided to pursue us and actually got close, we'd simply move elsewhere."

Lots of Warriors have a background in writing. Some hail from the print-publishing business, which is experiencing the leanest times it ever has known. Newspapers and magazines, for example, are hemorrhaging print circulation. Many of them are struggling to find ways to monetize websites and create meaningful revenue. Sales of print advertisements are down virtually across the board.

Readers have spoken: They prefer the Web -- not all of them, of course. Some people cannot imagine life without the print edition of the New York Times in one hand and a cup of Starbucks in the other. Print readers are losing the battle, though. It's expensive to produce print, expensive to deliver it and expensive to manage it after delivery.

Advertisers all have their own websites and their own mailing lists these days. Print is becoming less and less part of advertisers' plans. They no longer have to rely on print publications to make sure their messages get seen. In short, advertisers can use their own websites as a sort of cross between a sales pitch and a newsletter -- and they can email their own lists. The newspapers they once relied upon to spread the good word about them no longer is a principal conduit.

Which brings us back to the subject of theft.

Honestly, it rankles me to see veteran IMers talk about how easy it is to make money through article marketing or Blogging. When I see such claims, I'm almost always inclined to think the advice given is of poor quality or that theft of some sort is involved.

I have a subscription to a service that provides court documents for a fee. Much of my writing centers around court filings. I prepare original stories based on the filings. It might take hours to perform research and produce a quality story -- but it only takes seconds for someone to steal it. My work has been republished in its entirety on other Blogs, websites and forums, often with no attribution -- and often surrounded by advertisements that generate revenue only for the site that republishes the content without authorization.

This form of theft is hurting legitimate publishers -- names you know and love -- by denying them revenue from the fruits of their own labor. Some famous print-publishing companies with equally famous websites that showcase their brands are attempting to convert to a subscription-only model. In essence, they've recognized that thieves will steal their content and monetize it, so they are beginning to hide content behind walls and make people pay to see it. Google still may index the link, but a potential reader lands on a registration or subscription page, as opposed to a page that contains the actual story.

It's too early to tell if this approach will "work." Pilot models are being used in various places. One site I visit regularly now charges $69 a year to access Web content, and a slightly smaller sum if readers subscribe to the print publication. Another site still offers plenty of free Web content, but charges readers to view exclusive content and specialty Blogs by prominent writers.

We've discussed how theft has affected well-known companies. Let's take a look at how it affects IMers and article marketers.

If someone steals your content, he is hurting your small business. Beyond that, though, he is sending the unmistakable message that laziness pays, that one of the best ways to make money online is to become a thief.

That attitude hurts IM as a whole. All of us should be trying to build reputation points. The Web has won. It does not have to be a cesspool of theft.

Regardless, there are no easy solutions. Perhaps a good starting point in addressing the problem is to return to what our mothers and fathers taught us when we were bouncing on their knees as infants, toddlers and, later, as "Big Boys" and "Big Girls."

"Don't steal," they admonished us. "How would you feel if somebody stole your Tonka Truck or Matchbox Car or Beanie Baby or EASY-BAKE Oven."

Stealing someone's hard work and monetizing your website with it is no different than stealing a child's plaything. Perhaps we should all remind ourselves of that from time to time.

Patrick
#content #steal #thieves
  • Profile picture of the author brettmwindmann
    Could not agree more with what you have said in this post. Not only do people steal they follow your articles and try and steal your keywords as well. That is why I use different Pen Names to try and hide my niches. It really is sad, but I suppose there is no way to actually stop this from happening.

    Thanks for your insight!
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    • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
      Originally Posted by brettmwindmann View Post

      That is why I use different Pen Names to try and hide my niches. It really is sad, but I suppose there is no way to actually stop this from happening.

      Thanks for your insight!
      Indeed, it is sad, Brett. But occasional reminders such as this post and others at least get people to consider their actions -- not all people, of course.

      Patrick
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      • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
        Originally Posted by Elmer Hurlstone View Post

        Patrick,

        Great to see you back.

        As always, I enjoy your take on things of interest.

        I'm sure many here will agree with you, in whole or in part, but they will be, sadly, only the choir members.

        Elmer
        I'll echo what he said. Welcome back...

        And sign me up for the baritone section (and if you're wise, you'll steal the batteries from my microphone).

        Originally Posted by mmurtha View Post

        The boogers who peddle this information and pass it down the line to these new people are the ones that should be hung by the ying-yang and set a blaze. These are the people giving IM the black eye, and they don't realize they are really shooting themselves and everyone else in the foot just to make that qick buck today.

        Mary
        Remind me to stay on your good side. That's an image I'll have to work to get rid of...
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    • Profile picture of the author Wealthyclark
      Originally Posted by brettmwindmann View Post

      Could not agree more with what you have said in this post. Not only do people steal they follow your articles and try and steal your keywords as well. That is why I use different Pen Names to try and hide my niches. It really is sad, but I suppose there is no way to actually stop this from happening.

      Thanks for your insight!
      They can follow my articles all they want because if they can't find keywords on there own, I doubt if they can do anything with them. As far as stealing content goes, yes, it's wrong but we all know the possibilities of it happening so we role with the punches. There are was to deter people from taking your articles if you host them yourself. Most of these guy's aren't going to site there and type your article out by hand word by word, that would somewhat defeat their purpose.
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  • Profile picture of the author Elmer Hurlstone
    Patrick,

    Great to see you back.

    As always, I enjoy your take on things of interest.

    I'm sure many here will agree with you, in whole or in part, but they will be, sadly, only the choir members.

    Elmer
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  • Profile picture of the author mmurtha
    Hi Patrick,

    Good to see you in print kid!

    One of the problems with thieves is that they don't care about anyone else or anyone else's livelyhood. Yes they are lazy too.

    But the biggest problem is that most new people who come online and buy an ebook or report, or simply read an article on someone's blog don't even know they are thieves. They think they are simply following someone's advice or an expert's advice on how to make money. And no, I'm not making excuses for them or saying it's okay - thieves are thieves no matter how you look at it. I'm stating facts because these new people do not know who to watch and listen to yet.

    The boogers who peddle this information and pass it down the line to these new people are the ones that should be hung by the ying-yang and set a blaze. These are the people giving IM the black eye, and they don't realize they are really shooting themselves and everyone else in the foot just to make that qick buck today.

    I know I'm one of the people who don't write new info and post it in public anymore. In the end, it's the end user using and surfing the Internet who will pay the highest cost.

    Good post, and thanks!


    Mary
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    • Profile picture of the author Steven Wagenheim
      Welcome back Patrick. You were missed.

      As for the OP.

      What can I say? :sigh:

      Yeah, you pretty much summed it up.
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      • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
        Originally Posted by Steven Wagenheim View Post

        Welcome back Patrick. You were missed.

        As for the OP.

        What can I say? :sigh:

        Yeah, you pretty much summed it up.
        Steven,

        Appreciate your note. BTW, how'd the Mets do this year? (Just kidding. No answer is required.)

        You Jersey folks always will have Springsteen and the E Street Band to get excited about, regardless of how the Mets perform. I read that Bruce is 60 now and Clarence is 68.

        And to think I first saw Bruce when he still was in his 20s.

        Hope you are well, Steven.

        Patrick
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    • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
      Originally Posted by mmurtha View Post

      Hi Patrick,

      Good to see you in print kid!

      One of the problems with thieves is that they don't care about anyone else or anyone else's livelyhood. Yes they are lazy too.

      But the biggest problem is that most new people who come online and buy an ebook or report, or simply read an article on someone's blog don't even know they are thieves. They think they are simply following someone's advice or an expert's advice on how to make money.

      Mary
      Ay, Mary, I've missed the "kid" stuff. Always puts a smile on my face.

      I agree with you that lots of people write lots of eBooks that rationalize or institutionalize theft. Garbage In, Garbage Out quickly gets recycled and becomes GIGO twice served. Ultimately much of it gets confused as genuine wisdom. The committed thieves -- as separate and distinct from a large class of people who don't understand they're being trained in the art of thievery -- simply chalk it up to the Great IM Catch-All Fantasy To Cover All Sins:

      "That's just marketing!"

      Nice to see you, too, Kid.

      Patrick
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      • Profile picture of the author mmurtha
        Originally Posted by Patrick Pretty View Post

        I agree with you that lots of people write lots of eBooks that rationalize or institutionalize theft. Garbage In, Garbage Out quickly gets recycled and becomes GIGO twice served. Ultimately much of it gets confused as genuine wisdom. The committed thieves -- as separate and distinct from a large class of people who don't understand they're being trained in the art of thievery -- simply chalk it up to the great IM Catch-All Fantasy To Cover All Sins:

        "That's just marketing!"


        Nice to see you, too, Kid.

        Patrick
        Yes, they do, and that's a big injustice. They wouldn't know how to market something to save their lives!



        Hey John,

        Originally Posted by JohnMcCabe View Post

        Remind me to stay on your good side. That's an image I'll have to work to get rid of...
        Opps! I sometimes forget about the men when trying to draw images in words. Sorry about that one.

        But, know you are always on my good side, so you have nothing to worry about. I'll save the torch and rope for someone who deserves it.
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  • Profile picture of the author MikeRogers
    Hey Patrick,

    Good to see yer' smilin' face again

    I suppose if you've been in the IM business for any length of time, it's bound to happen. Matter of fact, I can't think of many Warriors who have not had their content stolen at one time or another.

    I once had an article that I had written appear on the blog of a noted PHD in the mental health field. At first, I was flattered that this "mental maestro" would consider my humble offering worthy of his attention but, since the article was taken word-for-word and no credit was given, I got over being flattered and quickly moved to MAD!

    Not one to simply let something like that stand, I contacted the good doctor by email and gave him a first-rate butt whacking, citing both the moral and legal ramifications that all content thieves must surely face; if not here, then in the after-life and invited him to explain his actions.

    A day or two later, I received his answer...

    It turned out that he had paid to have several articles for his blog outsourced and, trusting his writer, had not bothered to check the originality. He also confided that several other writers had contacted him with the same complaint.

    So, it appears that laziness has even deeper roots in our business than blog or site owners. It also extends to outsourcers.

    Mike
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    • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
      Originally Posted by MikeRogers View Post

      Hey Patrick,

      Good to see yer' smilin' face again

      I suppose if you've been in the IM business for any length of time, it's bound to happen. Matter of fact, I can't think of many Warriors who have not had their content stolen at one time or another.

      I once had an article that I had written appear on the blog of a noted PHD in the mental health field. At first, I was flattered that this "mental maestro" would consider my humble offering worthy of his attention but, since the article was taken word-for-word and no credit was given, I got over being flattered and quickly moved to MAD!

      Not one to simply let something like that stand, I contacted the good doctor by email and gave him a first-rate butt whacking, citing both the moral and legal ramifications that all content thieves must surely face; if not here, then in the after-life and invited him to explain his actions.

      A day or two later, I received his answer...

      It turned out that he had paid to have several articles for his blog outsourced and, trusting his writer, had not bothered to check the originality. He also confided that several other writers had contacted him with the same complaint.

      So, it appears that laziness has even deeper roots in our business than blog or site owners. It also extends to outsourcers.

      Mike
      Mike,

      It is good to see you, Sir. Your post raises some important points, perhaps principally that people who hire content-providers often end up buying stolen content or recycled drivel that purports to be original content.

      For my money, there is no percentage in paying a low-wage content provider -- not that your post suggests the person who reproduced your article believing he had outsourced for original material had accepted a bargain-basement bid.

      But my experience has been that Pros don't work on the cheap and that there is a correlation between price and performance among the league of professionals.

      Long ago, someone put it much simpler: You get what you pay for. :-)

      Regards,

      Patrick
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      • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
        Originally Posted by Patrick Pretty View Post

        Long ago, someone put it much simpler: You get what you pay for. :-)
        I always prefer "You pay for what you get."

        Primarily because it does not end the sentence with a preposition.

        But it also communicates that free is not really free. What you think of as "free" is really exacting payment in other ways... often in a negative sense. Not that you have paid something you have, but sometimes that you have not developed something you ordinarily would have.

        If you copy your content from others, for example, you don't learn how to get good original content on your own. That's a skill, and that skill has value. Without that skill, you are unable to provide content without going out and copying someone else's, and you are the poorer for it.
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        • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
          Originally Posted by CDarklock View Post

          I always prefer "You pay for what you get."

          Primarily because it does not end the sentence with a preposition.
          CDarklock,

          This is the sort of idle pedantry up with which I will not put. :-)

          It's a Churchillian cure for the offensive, sentence-ending preposition.

          Patrick
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          • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
            Originally Posted by Popstar View Post


            I've also had the very disheartening experience of having outsourcers sell me stolen content that was supposed to be original. I was paying more than the going rate and giving 100% bonuses...

            I don't outsource content creation any longer.

            Debbie
            I won't identify the parties involved, but the buyer relayed an exchange he had with his "content creator" in the Third World.

            Seems this contractor sold a package of ten original articles on a topic. On checking, every word of every article could be found on a major newspaper or magazine website.

            When the buyer called him on it, he was deeply offended. The buyer wanted ten original articles, and the seller had gone out and found him ten original articles. The buyer never specified that he wanted the seller to write them, and had that been the case, the articles would have been of much lower quality...

            :rolleyes:
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            • Profile picture of the author Cardsearch
              Years ago I wrote an article about an antique fire engine. My ex took the photos and I submitted it to the Lowell Sun. The sports writer took it and published it word for word with his own byline. I filed a claim in small claims court so had to go to a Lowell court. The opposing lawyer made mincemeat out of me saying I was a publicity seeker, etc. Of course being a Lowell court the judge decided I hadn't written it (although I had proof), but ruled that my ex was to get the photos back! I was only trying to get the price of the article. Someone told me I should have sued for thousands for plagiarism. Live and learn!
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          • Profile picture of the author CDarklock
            Originally Posted by Patrick Pretty View Post

            This is the sort of idle pedantry up with which I will not put. :-)
            I was going to say that, but I thought I'd see if you did.
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            "The Golden Town is the Golden Town no longer. They have sold their pillars for brass and their temples for money, they have made coins out of their golden doors. It is become a dark town full of trouble, there is no ease in its streets, beauty has left it and the old songs are gone." - Lord Dunsany, The Messengers
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  • Profile picture of the author JeffLam
    Totally agreed.

    However, theft of property, and more relevant for this case: intellectual property, are not only bounded in the internet marketing world.

    How long has piracy of music, movies and computer software been going on..?

    Not to mention the relatively easier effort of copying one's article. If software can be cracked and re-distributed, what difficulty or obstacle is stopping a person from selecting the article, right click 'copy' and then paste?

    That said obstacle would be one's moral conscious/integrity. Which is lacking in these pirates in the first place.

    The pirates do have an arguement with them, though. They do bring out a slightly valid point..but in our society and economy system today, their point, though however valid, is still bridging the written laws of justice.

    Their point is this (If anyone does not know): publishers of any content or product/services, may be 'ripping' and potentially 'leading' consumers on to pay money to use/try their product/service. And these products do NOT have any refund policy/guarantee. As such, if the marketing by them is so good in that they hype up many things..only to disappointed the paid customers.

    Hence, they use piracy as an excuse for customers to 'try before you buy'.

    Of course, most people 'try' forever.
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    • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
      Originally Posted by JeffLam View Post


      The pirates do have an arguement with them, though. They do bring out a slightly valid point..but in our society and economy system today, their point, though however valid, is still bridging the written laws of justice.

      Their point is this (If anyone does not know): publishers of any content or product/services, may be 'ripping' and potentially 'leading' consumers on to pay money to use/try their product/service. And these products do NOT have any refund policy/guarantee. As such, if the marketing by them is so good in that they hype up many things..only to disappointed the paid customers.

      Hence, they use piracy as an excuse for customers to 'try before you buy'.

      Of course, most people 'try' forever.
      Hello Jeff,

      I respectfully disagree that the pirates have a "slightly valid" point. Even so, I recognize you oppose the pirates in your post and aren't advocating for them.

      IMers, I believe, do not have the luxury of ascribing any validity at all to any argument raised by a pirate. They are, after all, pirates. Part of their aim is to enrich themselves at the expense of others while rationalizing their thieving ways.

      Robin Hood has become a central figure in the popular culture, and it's easy enough for some people to view robbing from the rich to give to the poor as a justifiable act.

      But that gives the Robin Hoods of the world way too much power. In their way of thinking, it's up to them to decide who deserves to be stolen from and who deserves to be rewarded with the criminal proceeds.

      They aren't willing to let the market determine winners and losers. What they ARE willing to do is force an artificial result and call it a public service. Those who accept the criminal proceeds keep the cycle going. The cost of the thefts get passed along to rank-and-file consumers.

      Drive a car? Ask your insurance agent why your rates are so high, even though you've never had an accident or a ticket.

      Regards,

      Patrick
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      • Profile picture of the author JeffLam
        Originally Posted by Patrick Pretty View Post

        Hello Jeff,

        I respectfully disagree that the pirates have a "slightly valid" point. Even so, I recognize you oppose the pirates in your post and aren't advocating for them.

        IMers, I believe, do not have the luxury of ascribing any validity at all to any argument raised by a pirate. They are, after all, pirates. Part of their aim is to enrich themselves at the expense of others while rationalizing their thieving ways.

        Robin Hood has become a central figure in the popular culture, and it's easy enough for some people to view robbing from the rich to give to the poor as a justifiable act.

        But that gives the Robin Hoods of the world way too much power. In their way of thinking, it's up to them to decide who deserves to be stolen from and who deserves to be rewarded with the criminal proceeds.

        They aren't willing to let the market determine winners and losers. What they ARE willing to do is force an artificial result and call it a public service. Those who accept the criminal proceeds keep the cycle going. The cost of the thefts get passed along to rank-and-file consumers.

        Drive a car? Ask your insurance agent why your rates are so high, even though you've never had an accident or a ticket.

        Regards,

        Patrick
        Well, from where I'm from, both the car and the insurance are pretty high..

        And another pointer they have is that young drivers drive recklessly. Guess insurance companies are the only boys who are given the authority to stereotype..

        I shall agree to to your disagreement, but upon second thought I do understand what exactly is the root of the disagreement here, especially so with the Robin Hood example:

        If I remember correctly, Robin Hood stole from the rich and probably noble. In their country/society, the rich tend to be (pardon the stereotype, stories tend to portray such belief to us readers) evil, greedy and selfish scumbags that profitted from 'unethical' ways such as:

        - ripping the 'poor' off with monopoly/authority of a certain power
        - illegal activities that tends to disadvantage the poor
        - etc.

        If I see it that way, Robin Hood whom stole from the rich (whom, paradoxically, 'stole' from the poor) isn't a villain - but a hero.

        A hero that steals BACK the wealth that, though may be 'legally' taken from the poor by the rich, and redistributes back to the poor.

        Now, take that back to intellectual property here and now.

        Pirates that outrightly steal such intellectual property, case in point being painstakingly written (or maybe not for you ) are in fact the 'rich noblemen' in this story - which are evil (but yet in their society it is legal).

        So who's Robin Hood? Well, if I steal the pirates stuff and redistributes it back to you. :p

        Just kidding.

        But yeah, I guess the story is clear here: pirating has no excuse.

        But yet, on the other point of marketers sometimes overhyping and ripping people off their money (the 'rich noblemen' in this case), it is still a valid point in my opinion.

        But not valid enough to warrant a piracy of intellectual property - though how lousy it may be.

        Which brings me to one point that was taught to me by Mr Paul Myers..

        ..which I will want to voice my opinion on another time!
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  • Profile picture of the author Bev Clement
    Patrick, nice to see you back.

    Too many people feel if its on the web they can use it, and you are right there are many who teach take whatever you can, and then move onto the next one. All they care about is the $ in their pocket and not how they got it.

    Bev
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    • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
      Originally Posted by Bev Clement View Post

      Patrick, nice to see you back.

      Too many people feel if its on the web they can use it, and you are right there are many who teach take whatever you can, and then move onto the next one. All they care about is the $ in their pocket and not how they got it.

      Bev
      Hello Bev,

      Nice to see you. My regards to Rob.

      Some of the tides, I believe, are turning against the folks who care only about the dollars in their pockets and not how they got them. There was an FTC case a few weeks ago in which a company that was permitting its subscribers to use its electronic facilities to commit theft ponied up $18 MILLION to settle the case.

      It was a good start.

      Regards,

      Patrick
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  • You have touched a subject near and dear to my heart. I hate content thieves more than anything, and I say this as someone who freely gives away a ton of content.

    Some content I want people to "steal," i.e., articles on article directories. Have at -- just leave the link in place and leave my name on the article. Is that asking so much? Pull my rss feeds into your little splog all you want, just leave them as I give them to you -- as teasers with links back to my site for those who want to read the whole article.

    Other stolen content makes me want to hunt down the thieves and fit them for a nice pair of cement shoes. I give enough stuff away that there is no reason whatsoever to steal from me, and it steams me to no end when it happens, especially when there is no acknowledgement.

    The good thing is that Google seems to be pretty good at de-indexing stolen content. I've never had a crogger (criminal blogger) outrank me with my own work. Still pisses me off, though.
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  • Profile picture of the author JayXtreme
    Hey Patrick!!!!!

    Fantastic to see you back here!



    You're one of the greatest writers in this industry, dude...

    Your work on the Autosurf last year was brilliant.. I blogged plenty about some of your stuff on those

    This industry will move along as always...

    BUT

    Whilst it is doing that, some people work FOR the cause in making it better, and others work AGAINST the cause. It's good to know that folk like you are working FOR it, because you put your case forward so well!

    Thanks for all you do, Patrick.

    Enough of the nice stuff...lol.... have a great day, Sir!

    Hope to see you around here more often.

    Peace

    Jay
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    Bare Murkage.........

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  • Profile picture of the author theinfomaven
    How do we deal with this problem, then?
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Patrick, I can't carry a tune in a bucket - but I try to make it up with volume...
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  • Profile picture of the author Popstar
    You're spot on with this one, Patrick.

    I've had people steal entire websites from me and one then began stealing from major news sites and putting my name under the articles.

    I've also had the very disheartening experience of having outsourcers sell me stolen content that was supposed to be original. I was paying more than the going rate and giving 100% bonuses... so price isn't always a factor. I think there's an entitlement mentality among some people on the web that makes them think the usual rules (and laws) don't apply to them.

    I don't outsource content creation any longer.

    Debbie
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  • Profile picture of the author Jan Mueller
    Thank you for this post. As a newbie it is really great to see this kind of information and learn what to stay away from.
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  • Profile picture of the author KanameMedia
    We really can't do anything about this. The only thing we can do is try to minimize the damage. The importance of inter post linking is rising, we can save our content from auto blogs and mindless copying to a great degree. At least we get a few backlinks from this.
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  • Profile picture of the author MarketingSPY
    Patrick -
    I agree too. The best thieves are those who are usually know better - it's laziness and no fear of the little guy.
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  • Profile picture of the author bgmacaw
    Originally Posted by Patrick Pretty View Post

    An article marketer, for instance, may work hard to educate, enlighten and inform his readers -- only to see his work stolen and perhaps plastered on multiple websites. The thieves then monetize the content, which often is republished verbatim without so much as a back link.

    It wouldn't be right even if it did include a back link. It's not "Fair Use" to harvest entire articles without express permission and republish them elsewhere -- even with a back link.
    You might want to bother take the time to read the republishing/syndication part of the article sites' TOS. The 'thief' will probably be well within the TOS of most article sites if they republish your article on their site, which usually requires that they include the resource box and backlink They can do this with or without monetization on that site.

    If you don't like this practice and the article site TOs then don't post your articles on their site. Otherwise, don't bitch when people who're following the TOS of the article site syndicate your article.

    Originally Posted by Patrick Pretty View Post

    "Your content is on the Internet. We've licensed ourselves to steal it and republish it verbatim. We don't care how you feel about it. What's important to us is that we get a steady supply of free content through your labor, and we know how to make money with it. Don't bother trying to catch us. We're well aware our conduct is brazen, but you won't find us. Even if you decided to pursue us and actually got close, we'd simply move elsewhere."
    Yeah, I keep having a problem like this with a company located in Mountain View California. They keep grabbing my content and putting it on monetized portions of their website! I've had similar problems with a company located in Sunnyvale, California and one located in Redmond, Washington.

    :rolleyes:

    Originally Posted by Patrick Pretty View Post

    Newspapers and magazines, for example, are hemorrhaging print circulation.
    That's what happens when a company loses a monopoly to new technology and fails to innovate.

    Originally Posted by Patrick Pretty View Post

    Google still may index the link, but a potential reader lands on a registration or subscription page, as opposed to a page that contains the actual story.
    And people bounce away and find the link that has the info they want. They, in turn, may link to the content and the site with the complete info goes up in search placement while the subscription site drops like a rock due to not having incoming links. The only way this subscription model works is on truly unique and meaningful content that people will pay for. If your info is available elsewhere on the Internet for free, forget about it. If your opinion of your writing is puffed up by your ego and not based on reality, forget about it.
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    • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
      Originally Posted by bgmacaw View Post

      You might want to bother take the time to read the republishing/syndication part of the article sites' TOS. The 'thief' will probably be well within the TOS of most article sites if they republish your article on their site, which usually requires that they include the resource box and backlink They can do this with or without monetization on that site.
      I'm talking about clear, unambiguous cases of theft, which is why I used phrases in my post such as republishing "without express permission" and "republishes the content without authorization."

      I'm not talking about articles written specifically to be republished to help sites add to their editorial well and to gain a backlink and some traffic for the author.

      Patrick
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      • Profile picture of the author bgmacaw
        Originally Posted by Patrick Pretty View Post

        I'm talking about clear, unambiguous cases of theft, which is why I used phrases in my post such as republishing "without express permission" and "republishes the content without authorization."

        I'm not talking about articles written specifically to be republished to help sites add to their editorial well and to gain a backlink and some traffic for the author.

        Patrick
        I'm glad you cleared that up since your post sounded a lot like the typical whining I've seen around here complaining about the entirely legit syndication of article directory content.

        I also didn't realize that your were one of the "cool kids" around here and thus immune to criticism. My apologies.
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        • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
          Originally Posted by bgmacaw View Post

          I'm glad you cleared that up since your post sounded a lot like the typical whining I've seen around here complaining about the entirely legit syndication of article directory content.

          I also didn't realize that your were one of the "cool kids" around here and thus immune to criticism. My apologies.
          You were criticizing me for things I neither said nor implied. In fact, you apparently licensed yourself to criticize me based entirely on your desire to support article-marketing services, which I neither attacked nor criticized in my post. You pulled it out of thin air.

          What actually happened, bgmacaw, is that I wrote a respectful post about content used without authorization to stimulate discussion about the significant problem with theft.

          You responded to my post in a hostile tone, admonishing me condescendingly that I "might want to bother take the time to read the republishing/syndication part of the article sites' TOS," when I was not even talking about the authorized use of articles or even article sites or directories.

          After that, you ramped it up, again advising me in a condescending tone: "If you don't like this practice and the article site TOs then don't post your articles on their site. Otherwise, don't bitch when people who're following the TOS of the article site syndicate your article."

          It was clear immediately from your response that you either skimmed my post or didn't bother to read it at all. In my first response to you, I set you straight.

          Now you've responded by zinging me again, telling me what my original post "sounded" like to you, instead of acknowledging you made a simple mistake by not reading it closely enough and chiding me for things I did not say and for an argument I did not make. To add an extra layer of condescension, you now advise me that you didn't know I was one of the "cool kids around here and thus immune to criticism."

          In other words, you are defending your right to criticize me for things I did not say or imply, a rather strange construction.

          You concluded your defense of your right to criticize me for things I did not say with "My apologies," thus adding a dose of passive-aggressive sarcasm to your condescension.

          In my note to Paul, I thanked him for reminding me what I missed most about the Warrior Forum. Your posts in this thread remind me of what I missed about it least.

          Just so you know, on my next-to-last weekend as a Mod here, I worked together with another "cool kid" former Mod to try to put a thief out of business. We did it on our own time. The thief was stealing products from Warriors and giving them away free to people who'd sign up for his list. If a person paid a small fee, he or she could get a range of Warriors' products: His featured free product to build his list was a $500 WSO.

          Yes, the thief had a vault that stockpiled Warrior products he had stolen. He sold the key to the vault for $7.

          "Oy!" bgmacaw. You've served up some world-class "dreck" in this thread.

          Patrick
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          • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
            Why don't you get a grip and a clue instead of acting like you own the Internets?
            Well, then. I guess I've been told...

            Patrick,

            I'm sure another of the things you've missed about the place is the stunning intellectual might exemplified by the comments of one Mr. BG McYawn.

            The real reason he objects to "cool kids" is that the only part of the phrase that's ever applied to him is the noun. (That's where both the 'b' and the 'g' in his handle come from, by the way.)

            We should chat about the monetization issue, sir. But only if you promise to stop calling me, "sir."


            Paul

            PS: Do you suppose we might nominate McYawn for a Howitzer Prize, for his skill at shooting off his mouth?
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            • Profile picture of the author Daniel Brock
              It really does suck.

              But you would be surprised at how many WSOs endorse such behavior.

              I have recently seen a popular software that basically scrapes EzineArticles, translates the articles to spanish and back to English and then call it a legitimate article without absolutely no credit given to the original writer.

              It's a pretty sad world, but content theft is pretty much unavoidable these days.

              It almost makes you wonder why you spend so much time creating unique content...
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              • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
                Originally Posted by Daniel Brock View Post

                It really does suck.

                But you would be surprised at how many WSOs endorse such behavior.

                I have recently seen a popular software that basically scrapes EzineArticles, translates the articles to spanish and back to English and then call it a legitimate article without absolutely no credit given to the original writer.

                It's a pretty sad world, but content theft is pretty much unavoidable these days.

                It almost makes you wonder why you spend so much time creating unique content...
                Hello Daniel,

                I've seen such WSOs, including ones by authors who have no practical experience in the writing trade and simply pass along repackaged GIGO.

                It leads to big, big problems. Take the Associated Press, for instance. It basically gets robbed blind, thus affecting its bottom line and the bottom lines of its subscribers. The music industry has responded to theft/piracy with "John Doe" lawsuits, which are designed to have a chilling effect.

                But it's a crazy world. Some people literally have started their own countries on paper to provide a legal shield for piracy and to do things such as sell unregistered securities.

                There is an old, World War II sea hulk off the coast of England. The hulk's owner declared it a sovereign nation.

                It's called the Principality of Sealand, and, at least for a while, provided a "data haven" service:

                HavenCo - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

                You've probably heard about the autosurfing "industry" and the HYIP "industry." I've written a number of stories about people/companies that declared themselves "sovereign" nations. Their theory is that, by doing so, they can pick and choose the laws they want to follow.

                The SEC filed a lawsuit against one of the companies in May 2008. The company's defense was that it was a "sovereign" nation, even though it was operating an HYIP from Las Vegas.

                These approaches provide cover for various forms of theft -- the theft of intellectual property, the theft of money, the theft of investment capital.

                Regards,

                Patrick
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            • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
              Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post


              I'm sure another of the things you've missed about the place is the stunning intellectual might exemplified by the comments of one Mr. BG McYawn.

              The real reason he objects to "cool kids" is that the only part of the phrase that's ever applied to him is the noun. (That's where both the 'b' and the 'g' in his handle come from, by the way.)

              We should chat about the monetization issue, sir. But only if you promise to stop calling me, "sir."


              Paul

              PS: Do you suppose we might nominate McYawn for a Howitzer Prize, for his skill at shooting off his mouth?
              Hi Paul,

              OK. No more "Sirs" for you. :-)

              Appreciate your offer to discuss the monetization issue. I'll send you a note Monday. Please respond at your leisure.

              With respect to the Howitzer Prize, I've given two on my Blog. One was to a guy who thought it prudent to spam repeatedly. The other was to a guy whose overnight post was intercepted by the spam software and held in the queue for having too many links. When he didn't get the gratification of seeing his post published immediately, he assumed a conspiracy theory and then pelted the Blog with venom.

              I do, however, continue to love the Internet. :-)

              Thanks for your offer, Paul.

              Regards,

              Patrick
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  • Profile picture of the author waken
    Yeah.. Welcome back Patrick!

    Still remember your excellent "Sherlock Holmes" skill as a moderator to unveil some of the smartest spammers here. The most memorable to me was an article writer and directory owner that poses a few different entity answering his own thread. But he has regain access again and build up some credibility too.

    And thanks to your Sticky Pdf creator .. I'm still using it. It's great.

    And back to your particular post..well you're absolutely right but I found it extremely difficult to actually track down the thieves. Catch one today just to discover there were 3 new ones born! Argh!

    And they are not confined to only content publication on the net but also in ebook. I have read ebook (WSO) that consist of total "stolen" idea from another WSO etc. And yet people say it's okay to steal the idea but not the exact wording of it. But what's irritating is that they didn't word it well and it sounds like reading the original ebook. Huh!!..

    And there are way too many software that collect articles, snippets of articles, auto link with their affiliate id (some link back to the original source and some don't), making the whole process of building sites so simple that it attracted masses to follow the route. And some with auto re-write feature that simply replace a word here and there with synonyms etc. and totally strip away the resource box etc.

    Auch! There are way too many of them. It will be next to impossible to track them down all. It's basically all about ethics. And how could we possibly able to make these people aware that what they are dong is immoral and unethical? The web is too large, accessible from every corner of the world, and some places don't even have this copyright law, intellectual property law etc. So, I would just leave everything to the the universal law of karma.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      bgmacaw,
      If you don't like this practice and the article site TOs then don't post your articles on their site. Otherwise, don't bitch when people who're following the TOS of the article site syndicate your article.
      This response illustrates a large part of the problem: People in this industry are just like everyone else. They view things from their existing/preferred positions, rather than looking at what's actually there.

      You are coming at this from a completely inaccurate set of assumptions. You then get snarky based on those, for no useful reason at all. I suggest that you make the effort to acquire both a grip and at least some small portion of clue.

      You do provide an excellent example of a significant part of the problem: The tendency of many people to equate everything in a given field with the lowest common denominator. In this case, the quality of the typical "article" that ends up in article directories, and the loosest (read: most convenient for them) terms of usage.

      They apply these same standards to all content, and interpret them in whatever way lets them get along with the least effort. Thus, you end up with this...
      Definition of "article," from the Marketer's Dictionary:

      A block of text, 350 to 500 words long, organized around keywords having certain characteristics relative to search engine status. It is considered helpful if the aggregate appears to express some idea that justifies its presence in the content pool.

      The purpose of this artificial semantic construct is to displace genuinely useful and well-thought out material in the index of one or more other artificial constructs (search engines), in order to gain attention it neither deserves nor rewards.

      See also: keyword salad.
      Having reached this enviable depth of illiteracy, they push the bounds of reality, using spinners to take already crappy content to new dimensions of awfulness.

      Or, if they can't even think of a topic to pretend to have something to speak on, they find someone else's content and ask, "How much do I have to change this to avoid getting nabbed for using it?"

      These are not writers, by any responsible use of the word. They are, at their best, keyword hacks.

      Patrick is talking about actual content. The kind that intelligent people read and feel was worth the time invested. Writing that educates, entertains or informs.

      That stuff takes work. That's the stuff your better class of thief wants to acquire. Not the dreck that makes up most of what you see in article directories.

      Patrick,

      Wussup, Pretty-boy?

      The way to go after these guys is through their hosts and the places that they use for revenues. If it's AdSense, go straight to Google. Hit their hosts with a DMCA takedown notice. Close off the channels they use for their "businesses."

      (I wonder... Could you use a DMCA notice to get someone de-indexed?)

      If they're beyond that reach, there's a good chance they're not going to get much of the traffic you should have gotten. Not always the case, but quite often.

      It's people like this that make me think the right way to deal with pirates is to hire someone to render their fingers ... somewhat less well-defined.

      "Hand... meet hammer."


      Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        bgmacaw

        Patrick is talking about actual content. The kind that intelligent people read and feel was worth the time invested. Writing that educates, entertains or informs.

        That stuff takes work. That's the stuff your better class of thief wants to acquire. Not the dreck that makes up most of what you see in article directories.

        Patrick,

        Wussup, Pretty-boy?

        Paul
        Indeed, Paul, I was talking about the kind of content you described above -- 'ceptin' the "dreck," of course.

        Here's a "splorf!" to denote the smile on my face from your use of "dreck." Dreck is such a fine, useful, economic word. I found myself wanting to use "oy" a few days ago, but didn't have a good enough context in which to use it. I'll trot it out one of these days, along with "dreck."

        Your post reminded me about what I've missed most about the Warrior Forum.

        "Wussup" with me is trying to figure out better ways to monetize content. My main Blog never has had higher readership, but a corresponding increase in revenue has not accompanied the increase in page loads. So, I've been tweaking and experimenting to tailor both the editorial and the ads/paid special reports to make them more meaningful to readers.

        Thanks for your note, Paul. Hope you are well, Sir.

        Regards,

        Patrick
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      • Profile picture of the author bgmacaw
        Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

        You are coming at this from a completely inaccurate set of assumptions. You then get snarky based on those, for no useful reason at all. I suggest that you make the effort to acquire both a grip and at least some small portion of clue.
        Why don't you get a grip and a clue instead of acting like you own the Internets?

        :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:
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        • Profile picture of the author Nahm D. Plume
          Originally Posted by bgmacaw View Post

          Originally Posted by Paul Myers
          You are coming at this from a completely inaccurate set of assumptions. You then get snarky based on those, for no useful reason at all. I suggest that you make the effort to acquire both a grip and at least some small portion of clue.
          Why don't you get a grip and a clue instead of acting like you own the Internets (emphasis added)?

          :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:
          Satisfy my curiosity, please. Exactly how many "Internets" are there?

          NDP
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  • Profile picture of the author JonMills
    Yep unfortunetly there are a lot of low lifes out there, blood sucking wankers who need a good kick up the ass as they treat internet marketing like trash

    These folks dont last long and usually disappear when they see they are constantly chasing a few bucks here and there.
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
    Boy Patrick, it is truly
    great to have you back!

    My solution to the problem is
    a bit far-fetched, but it all
    comes down to fooling them
    at their own game. A neat
    way to do it would be to
    insert some code that would
    supplant whatever is copied,
    automatically replacing it.

    Don't know how it would work,
    or if it could. But it could be
    rendered without the pirates
    knowing it even happened.

    All the best,
    Michael

    p.s. It really is great to see you here again. I'm hoping you remember how I enjoy engaging in word games with you.
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    "Ich bin en fuego!"
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    • Profile picture of the author Patrick Pretty
      Originally Posted by Michael Oksa View Post

      Boy Patrick, it is truly
      great to have you back!

      My solution to the problem is
      a bit far-fetched, but it all
      comes down to fooling them
      at their own game. A neat
      way to do it would be to
      insert some code that would
      supplant whatever is copied,
      automatically replacing it.

      Don't know how it would work,
      or if it could. But it could be
      rendered without the pirates
      knowing it even happened.

      All the best,
      Michael

      p.s. It really is great to see you here again. I'm hoping you remember how I enjoy engaging in word games with you.
      Hello Michael,

      It is good to see you. Bev, I believe, told me about your medical episode. Sure good to see you thriving.

      At some point today I'll take a close, close look at your post for the purposes of the cipher. :-)

      I do miss it so, Michael.

      On the subject of a software fix with inserted code to disarm the thieves, I do know of a person working on such an approach. Haven't spoken with him in a while. You've reminded me I need to follow-up on that.

      It is good to see you, Michael.

      Regards,

      Patrick
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