|I could not decide on an appropriate image for this post.|
Hopefully I'm not violating any copyrights with this one.
I've been a bit behind on book reviews lately -- had a long stretch of work (7 days); and on Friday morning, an unpleasant discovery. A friend emailed that she had found a blogger who was lifting exact copies of my blog posts and publishing them on Blogger under a different name. Word for word, images and all.
Well, I was dumbstruck, then furious. Seriously, who'd want to copy my blog? I don't have that many followers or that much traffic. I'm not particularly witty or insightful. I don't make money off my blog, and I sincerely doubt I'll ever get a book deal. I don't post a lot of personal stuff. But I do put effort into my posts. I know some bloggers can just sit down and type something interesting right off the top of their heads. I am not one of those. I start writing thoughts and then I have to edit -- a lot.
So who is this blogger? Well, I don't even think I want to dignify this person by mentioning specifics -- why should I increase traffic on her blog? All I know is that she's on Blogger and that since February, she has posted every single one of my postings going back to 2010, and she has about FIFTY other blogs -- I'm pretty sure she's stealing all her content for those from other bloggers as well. A google search of her name showed she's been stealing from blogs all around the country, personal stuff as well as book reviews. I wonder if she even reads what she's copying -- how could a person have 50 simultaneous blogs and write about 50 different places at once?
My one consolation is that the only comments on her blog are from me, telling her to cease and desist. She's in a foreign country (if I am to believe what she posts about herself on the internet -- I don't know what to believe) -- and hopefully few of her countrymen care enough to read it. And I'm not alone -- other bloggers have complained about her, but no results so far.
I'm trying to think of ways to prevent blog plagiarism, but I honestly don't know if it's possible. I've heard you can insert code into the blog settings to prevent cut and pasting, but I don't know if that would work. I could cut off my RSS feed, but why should I cut off all my legitimate followers? And now I'm also wondering if I've technically plagiarized anyone else myself -- not my writing, but I have lifted the occasional image from the internet. Mostly it's book covers or images from film and TV adaptations of books, but once in awhile I use a graphic or image without attribution. If I've stolen anything from anyone, I apologize profusely -- please let me know and I'll take it down or give credit immediately.
It's making me think seriously about giving up blogging altogether. What's the point if some jerk is just going to copy my stuff and pass it off as her own? It's very discouraging.
I wonder if she's going to steal this post as well.