Copyright Infringement

Arti is going through the most depressing blogging experience at the moment.  No, it’s not the Blog Stats, or the comments, or the lack of them.  I admit they can affect one’s mood.

The most discouraging scenario for a blog writer is to see not one, or two, but 10 of her posts being copied and reprinted in their entirety on another website.  Of course when they do that, there won’t be any link back to your own blog, neither would your name appear as the writer.

I was aware of this as a “pingback” on my posts, waiting for me to approve.  A click on the trackback link I found they were no “pingbacks”.  My whole home page with 10 posts all appeared on the plaigerizer’s site.  What’s funny is even my last post, stating I was Arti at Ripple Effects, was intact in the content. 

This just confirms it’s a myth to think it’s a compliment to your writing when you see your work copied.  Do you think Splog operators would care to read every post and think it’s good before stealing?  The whole process is automated.  It just happens that maybe my posts just carry the tags they’re looking for.  By the way,  all my 10 posts are categorized under “Music” on that Splog.  You can tell how much they care about the content of even their own site! 

These are Splogs, Spamblogs.  They exist to collect advertising revenues using other people’s materials just to attract traffic.  How can one write so many posts all on a single day if not by the simple act of copying and pasting?  It has been noted that on the average, a blogger takes from 1 to 8 hours to writer a post.  Well, for slow bloggers like Arti of Ripple Effects, it takes days of mulling, reading, viewing, researching, before writing.  The last step in the whole process usually logs in the higher end of that 1-to-8-hour range.

Arti feels robbed, violated, and knocked out.  What’s the point of continuing wtih this if whatever I write is taken away and published as somebody else’s work? 

While still sustaining a concussion, Arti went through the process of writing a complaint letter, found in the very informative website Plaigarism Today, and trying to find the hosting company of the site through http://whois.net.  But of course, it’s blocked by the domain owner so I had nowhere to send my complaint letter.  It did though lead me to the site Privacy Protect, where I could at least launch a report of abuse and hopefully locate the domain owner.  As of now, I’m still waiting for a reply.

Finally, an email to WordPress Support, a most helpful source, led me to the possible hosting company, to whom I directly sent my letter of complaint.  Within the hour, I received their reply, stating that they had ‘reminded’ the owner to remove the pirated content.  I assume they are in good faith, since the language is not in English, except the few lines addressed to me. I appreciate their immediate response.

Whew!  Even writing this sequence of events is exhausting!  But now that I’m done, I feel relieved.  Another reason why we blog.  Ok, maybe it’s still worth it, to continue writing, blogging, and all that.

So yes, if you’re reading this on a website other than Ripple Effects, you know you are reading a post that has been copied without permission. Go to https://rippleeffects.wordpress.com to read this and other interesting articles in their original.

Update April 29:  Arti felt like the victim of a practical joke when she saw this very post, entitled “Copyright Infringement”, was copied on to that Splog mentioned here.   Anyway, here’s the good news:  The Splog in question has now been suspended by the hosting administration.  Thanks for all your moral and practical support.

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Arti

If she’s not birding by the Pond, Arti’s likely watching a movie, reading, or writing a review. Bylines in Asian American Press, Vague Visages, Curator Magazine.

10 thoughts on “Copyright Infringement”

  1. In echoing you Arti, whoever copied the articles from Ripple Effects as if they were his/her own and have the nerve to post them online are indeed horrible. It is a crime of opportunity, motivated by greed!

    Sorry to hear of your frustration, yes, you’ve been violated & robbed. I hope all bloggers would join force and find an ultimate way to safeguard our intellectual property.

    Sharing our ideas, music, articles, photos online can be fun but one should at least have the courtesy NOT to copy?

    Any other brilliant ideas out there?
    Don’t be discouraged Arti, you are one great scholar, writer and most of all, my favourite Blogger.

    Like

  2. When this happened to me for the first time, I felt like I’d been hit in the head with a 2×4. I started watching for it, and found the same thing happening over and over. Mine tend to get picked up when they’re travel related.

    I’ve been lucky – I’ve been able to identify the host in all but one instance, and the blogs have been pulled.

    I did a post about this on another site, and there was a lot of associated comment with good information. Some of the discussion was specific to photographers, but it’s still helpful to have. You can find that here: http://www.wunderground.com/blog/shoreacres/comment.html?entrynum=68&tstamp=

    Another good site is the Publishing Law Center. While run by an attorney, not a non-profit, it’s crammed with excellent information. Here is a link to the page devoted to articles on copyright, internet law, etc.
    http://www.publaw.com/legal.html

    Sometimes, you can get to the offenders through advertisers like Google Adsense.

    It is a pain, for sure. I don’t see a My Free Copyright button here – if you’re not using that service, it’s a useful one for proving ownership.
    And, the Writers Guild of America Registry is worth looking into. You can find them here: http://www.wgawregistry.org/webrss/regdetails.html I will say that WGA probably isn’t worth it or even feasible for blogs, but if there is something especially important to you, a registration service might be good. There are sites dedicated to photography, too.

    I’m just so sorry – I know exactly how it feels and what you are going through. As another “slow blogger”, I appreciate especially the hours of work you’ve put in, and it is infuriating to have the work stolen by someone who hasn’t a clue what the true value of the stolen content is.

    If things don’t work themselves out quickly, and you want to drop an email with the URLs and such, I’d be happy to help in whatever way I can.

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  3. I forgot to add this, from timethief’s most excellent “onecoolsiteabout blogging” : http://onecoolsite.wordpress.com/2009/02/05/copyright-basics-for-bloggers/

    There’s a world of info there. And don’t forget the DMCA site (Digital Millenial Copyright Act).
    http://www.gseis.ucla.edu/iclp/dmca1.htm

    If you just need to make yourself feel better, do what I do. Go back to the comments section on my Weather Underground page, and sing along with “DMCA”, the parody I wrote to the tune of “YMCA”. That doesn’t do a thing to solve the problem, but it makes me laugh every time.

    Linda,

    Thanks so much for all the practical advice, recommendations, resources, website suggestions, and even musical consolation you have left with me here. That’s one great parody you have there… have you copyrighted it?

    As you know, this is not the first time I have my posts stolen. Just as you said, posts tagged under ‘travel’ seem to be the popular target, as well as entertainment. But this is by far the largest scale for me, all 10 posts copied at the same time.
    Thanks for your offer to help. At this point, I’ve located the hosting company and they have since responded to my email. So we’ll see what becomes of it. Now, your suggestion of “Myfreecopyright” is an idea I’m pondering. I’ll definitely check it out.

    Again, thanks for all your suppport.

    Arti

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  4. Arti, I am so sorry that this awfulness happened to you. Linda’s advice is right on point–and the song is great (go sing it; you’ll feel better right away). A favorite poem by Yeats says it all:

    I made my song a coat
    Covered with embroideries
    Out of old mythologies
    From heel to throat;
    But the fools caught it,
    Wore it in the world’s eyes
    As though they’d wrought it.
    Song, let them take it,
    For there’s more enterprise
    In walking naked.

    Short on advice–long on support. Good luck!

    ds,

    Great support indeed, and very sound advice. I now feel how miniscule my ‘problems’ are when juxtaposed with Yeat’s brilliant lines. “Song, let them take it/For there’s more enterprise/In walking naked.” A hearty thank-you.

    Arti

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  5. Thank you ALL for sharing….the lyrics and the poem.

    Hope you’re feeling better and at ease with yourself Arti.

    Have a good weekend…keep on blogging my friend. Don’t give up!!

    Molly Mavis,

    Thanks for your encouragement and kind words…Occupational hazard of blogging that we all have to face at one time or another. Arti’s ancient Chinese proverb: A rock thrown in the pond will stir up more ripples than a pebble, that’s all.

    Arti

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  6. Arti, how frustrating for you, and disappointing too, I imagine. I was sorry to hear about this. I hope there is a good resolution to all this, and also, that you keep blogging, knowing that readers such as myself appreciate your excellent posts!

    Shari,

    Thanks for your encouragement. With all these support, Arti will recover in no time.

    Like

  7. I’m glad you’re still writing, although it is very discouraging and frustrating to track down thieves and try to get them to stop. A friend of mine stopped blogging because her uncredited work appeared on blogs that were supposedly reputable. Some of my nature posts have appeared on some European “science” blogs that are probably used for some kind of ad revenue, but my name was on them. I got a pingback, so that’s how I discovered that. That hasn’t happened in a while, though. Although my name was on the post on another blog, I want people to come to my own blog where I can possibly interact with them and have some control over the content.

    Hi Cathy,

    I usually just ignore those spams that quote a short section of my post and link back to my blog, so their readers would come to read the rest of the original. But this time it’s the whole home page, all 10 posts stolen, copied in their entirety, without linking back to me, replacing my name with ‘admin’, and even copyrighted as their own! That got me so upset. But the letter to the hosting company apparently worked well. So for this episode, I hope it’s case closed.

    Arti

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  8. That’s just sooo disturbing! I tell my students not to plagiarize and when they do, they get a BIG FAT ZERO! Don’t be discouraged and continue with your good work! Don’t let this stop your gift from the Father!

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  9. Arti,

    I’m very sorry. I had no idea this had happened and there you are generously contributing to my blog while undergoing this horror. It is a violation.

    I remember shortly after starting my own blog, someone completely copied the template, the style, the content and the sidebar features, claiming them as their own. Fortunately, the matter was resolved quickly by making quick use of the so called ‘cease and desist’ letter wordpress provides for such violations.

    The only consolation I can offer is to take heart in the fact that imitation is the highest form of flattery.

    eAEsthete,

    I’m not aware of the ‘cease and desist’ letter… I should check that out. I’m still getting copied, posts in their entirety, but at least these people have the name Arti linking back to me. But the damage is done because people would have read the whole thing already. Unfortunately, I can’t say they’re any form of flattery because it’s all automated. You see, I’ve even seen this very post yes, entitled “Copyright Infringement” being copied onto another site!

    Thanks for stopping by and I’m always grateful for your comments.

    Arti

    Like

  10. You’re completely right about the automation. After I had sent off the post, I realized it’s a soulless, bloodless infringement that has no upside.

    At least you can take heart in the comforting comments of compassionate strangers. I am pushing hard for a silver lining here, no?

    Like

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