Are content thieves this bad? What can I do?

7 replies
I have a google alerts subscription and I get alerts in my niche as they happen. Over the past week I have noticed that people are basically STEALING my content and copy and pasting it on their site. They either totally remove the resource box or just disable the link.

There are about 4-5 articles I have written that have been stolen this way. Is this pretty normal. I don't want to concentrate going after something like this when I need to be focusing on my business but how common is this? Is there anything I can do that doesn't take too much time trying to track these guys down?

Maybe there is a standard scare email I could send threatening legal action?

Thanks guys
#bad #content #thieves
  • Profile picture of the author Brian_Mahaffey
    Send a cease and decist letter. This usually will scare the crap out of them and should do it. Also, put the copyscape logo on your site. This happens all the time, and unless you want to spend loads of money on lawyers not much else you can do,

    Cease and desist - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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  • Profile picture of the author SimonRiver
    This happens all the time. You're better off letting it go because of the opportunity costs that comes with spending all that time sending out C&D letters which would amount to you earning $0.
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    • Profile picture of the author angela99
      Re "Is this pretty normal. I don't want to concentrate going after something like this when I need to be focusing on my business but how common is this? Is there anything I can do that doesn't take too much time trying to track these guys down?"

      Yes, unfortunately it is common. I wouldn't say it's normal - a thief is a thief, online or off.

      I assume you're referring to scrapers; scripts which grab content and then repost it, with loads of AdSense ads surrounding the material?

      As far as combating it, if the site stealing from you is an obvious scraper, ignore it. These sites come and go.

      If someone is blatantly targeting YOUR content, rather than everyone's, Lorelle has some great advice - What Do You Do When Someone Steals Your Content Lorelle on WordPress .

      Hope this helps. :-)
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  • Profile picture of the author minisite911
    sorry for the bad news, but as far as I'm concern, YES it is pretty normal
    appearantly, most people, especially from some countries, didn't really care about copyright, privacy, and stuff like that.. so, really, it happens all the time

    But the good news is, DON'T let them bother you! Just concentrate on your business, and not on how to prevent the content to be stolen. Adding a "no right click" script, or perhaps encrypting the page content will not do any good.. so, just focus on your business, and sooner or later, visitors (maybe not all of them), even search engines, will be aware that the original content is originated from your site.

    Good luck!
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  • Profile picture of the author ericseminara
    We stopped putting samples of our work on our site because it was getting scraped. We chose not pursue it. You can send a cease and desist letter but it takes time to do it. Take comfort in the fact that it won't show up as unique content for people who scrape it since the work is already out there. It sucks, but I agree that your efforts are probably better put elsewhere. Policing your articles could become a full time job that won't pay you anything.
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  • Profile picture of the author Sami
    Yes it is common.

    This is probably an easier way ...

    Use the theirf's domain name in sites like:

    DNS Network Tools: Network Monitoring and DNS Monitoring from DNSstuff


    DNS Tools

    Find out who the "host" is and get their "abuse" email address (it is a standard email address for all domains). Then

    a) send an email about the offending domain to the abuse address of the host companny and

    b) go to the website of the host and use "Contact Us"

    In both cases highlight serious and "illegal" breach of copyright by the offending domain that they are hosting and hold them responsible for "facilitation of an illegal act".

    Hosts care about all the thousands of other customers and of course their businesses more than they worry about one customer who has paid them upfront already.

    It is a really foolish host that doesn't shut down that account in minutes! I've heard of people who have lost their account just because someone "accused" them of infringment. The host shut them down for several days before they releaized the accusation was unfounded.

    I believe the hosts are used to receving complaints due to hosting thousands of domains of course. They'll probably react very fast.

    I don't believe a thief will take much note of a C&D ... and some don't even have their contact details on the site (which I think is now illegal under US law and you can point this out to the host too). And many thieves use a private domain registration so they hide the owner's details from the 'Whois' records.

    BTW, the entire tracing actions above will take you no more than 5 minutes, once you find your way on the sites I mentinoed above.

    Good luck
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  • Profile picture of the author bobsstuff
    Outsouce the C&D process to a third world service.
    Get bids for searching for stolen articles and sending the appropriate notices on one of the "programmers/writers for hire" sites.
    Hire a virtual assistant.
    I mean, we are told to outsource everything you can, why not this?
    Bob Hale
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