Plagiarism is a compliment, right?

A friend of mine sent me a direct message on Twitter that pointed out something interesting….   A blog post I had written on SDDPCM had been copied word for word by another site.     A little bit of googling revealed that in fact it had been picked up by two sites.  Here is the original, and the copies are here and here.

What bothered me was not that the content was copied without any obvious (well, obvious to me) attempt to acknowledge the original author.  In fact in both cases, the copied text included a link to another blog entry I had written, so an alert reader would pick up that the content had come from someone else (still…  a little acknowledgement doesn’t hurt).  To begin with, I was not concerned with the re-use of my work.  After all, I am writing this to be helpful, so if you think something I have written is helpful…  and you spread the word…  that work is even more helpful (but hey thats what Twitter is for… right?).  But then it occurred to me….by copying the article without a link back to the original source (mine), if I find a mistake is made and I update my blog post, those corrections will not flow to the clones.   So this potentially undermines my efforts to be helpful.

I also noticed that in each case, the clones had advertisments by Google.   Does this mean Google and/or these other bloggers, are actually making money from copying my content?Hmmm…   acknowledgement is one thing… a cheque is even nicer.
Or I am reading too much into this?

Still…   message to Anthony…   if you push content into the public domain you have to be prepared for this.

After tweeting about this, I did learn it is possible to insert sentences into your content that you could then monitor for with Google Alerts.  I don’t plan to do this myself, but its certainly worth being aware of.   This of course also presumes the cloners don’t detect these sentences and delete them.

I am very curious to know of similar experiences.  Has this happened to you?  Did you do anything about it?    Were you happy with the result?

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About Anthony Vandewerdt

I am an IT Professional who lives and works in Melbourne Australia. This blog is totally my own work. It does not represent the views of any corporation. Constructive and useful comments are very very welcome.
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One Response to Plagiarism is a compliment, right?

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