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Copyright infringement

  1. secondchancetolive

    Recently, I have typed my into different search engines. When I entered it into Alta Vista I saw my site with in another persons site introduction. They made reference to something I stated in my book --which is copyright with Library of Congress -- as referenced on my web log. The site on Alta Vista took a line of what I said to be an intro to him trying to sell something. I feel as though I am being exploited and my material being used to promote something other than my intention. What can I do about this type of behavior from this and other sites?

  2. No one uses altavista, so I wouldn't worry about it too much. People also have a fair use right to quote a portion of your book. You can read about fair use here:

  3. Surely links and quotes from other people is what you want? Or have I missed something. All publicity is good publicity any way.

  4. macroartinnature

    If I remember correctly, and they are using someone's material (your material) in a way to sell something, ... then you can pretty much forget the "fair use" argument!
    Your copyright material, ... for their financial benefit. That's a no no!

    Simply contact their ISP with your concerns, stating "clearly" what you think the main issue is, and let them take it from there. (Give them some time on this)
    By law, if a infringement exists, they have to remove the infringing material or shut down the site.

  5. All publicity is good publicity any way.

    Tell that to Gary Hart and Hugh Grant. :)

    If you post the URL of the other site, I can let you know who to send a complaint to. We've talked about these sites before here in the forums (Search for spam scrapers) and folks have complained. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't.

    I would break the link so that it doesn't give those folks credit for that link.

  6. secondchancetolive

    Dr. Mike,
    Thanks so much. this is the site. I copied it off of the page that is on the first page after entering secondchancetolive. No www or wordpress is needed. Let know what you think Sir. Thanks so much.

    I Got Off My Assets " Blog Archive " An Answer To Any Question - Goals, Tasks, Whatever You Need To Know
    Getting the answer to any question. Do you ever feel stuck and don't know ... Thank you February 14, 2007 Posted by secondchancetolive in Life, Creativity...
    More pages from

  7. secondchancetolive

    Also please tell me how to break such links for the future if I find out someone is exploiting me for their gain. Dr. Mike, also please let me know if their is a free service or some type of widget that can check if my material is being stolen or pirated on the www.

    Thanks so much, Sir.


  8. I copied it off of the page that is on the first page after entering secondchancetolive

    Please point to the page (ie give the URL for it) on your blog that you're talking about. That and the URL of the link with the copyright issue. I'll show you how to break it. I don't see the text from that selfhelp URL within your blog anywhere.

    I can't give legal advise here in the forums. Best bet would be to occassionally drop phrases from your posts into search engines and see if you get any hits.

  9. secondchancetolive

    Hmm. I am not sure what you are asking me to point to in the brief explanation at Alta Vista that I gave you above, Sir. I am new to all this new nomenclature. I guess my concern is that Mr. Obrien takes a phrase from one the pages of my set up something he want to say and be heard saying. No reference is made to
    at his site that I can see. I hope I am not making a big deal out of nothing, but I am new and am suspicious of people who take what I say out of the context of how I use it to draw people to their site. My weblog is increasing exponentially every day and I want to know if people that do such things as Mr. Obrien in Getting off my Assets is legit or a red flag.
    Thanks for your patience as I learn.

  10. Please give the URL of the phrase where it exists within your blog.

    Please give the URL of where it occurs on the other site.

    /me notices that you're here in Charlotte. Want a house call? ;)

  11. secondchancetolive

    Dr. Mike
    Write me at my email address and a house call sounds great. Thank you Sir.


  12. I don't know your email address as I don't have backend access. theapparatus ( at ) gmail ( dot ) com

    I was joking but I don't mind. :)

  13. secondchancetolive

    Dr Mike [email redacted]. That should get you to my inbox. Not wanting to give more personal information for general consumption. Hope you understand. Talk with you later.

    Happy trails.


  14. We also have a copyright blogger right here at wordpress at that might have some useful background for you.

  15. secondchancetolive

    Thank you so very much Raincoaster. Very helpful. God bless you.

    Have a great weekend.


  16. You too, Craig. Don't worry, authenticity always wins out. I'm a cynic, but I have seen it happen so many times. Not to worry.

  17. Dear all,

    I just found out about the above problem yesterday and can tell one and all this is NOT a copyright infringement. I have been in touch with Craig to tell him exactly what has happened and trust he will come back here to confirm this.

    Unfortunately I doubt I will be the first or the last person to be falsely labelled or indeed "tagged" (Thieves, Copyright, Infringement, Infidels, Scrapers - as this page shows).

    Craigs information was never used on my website intentionally by me.

    Instead, I have an RSS feed from Technorati on the RHS of my blog page which shows blog snippets of related content from the blogosphere as and when visitors (or in this case search bots) come to the site.

    This of course is a legitimate way to keep your page content fresh and to offer visitors a choice of related content.

    The searchbots take a snapshot of the page and index it and of course when results are shown, they often stitch part results from the page in an attempt to give the results context.

    Hence, Craig saw his quote attached to some of the main page information. Had Craig visited the page he would not have seen any of his information at all (as the RSS feed is dynamic and the results would have been updated with new blog posts from other authors - of course this depends on the volatility of the subject matter).

    The only way you can see such results is to visit the cache pages of the search engine and see what they crawled at a given point in time.

    I'm glad I found this post (albeit by accident) so this issue can be put to bed.

    Tom O'Brien

  18. Thanks for the clarification. We often encounter issues like these, and the more we can learn about legitimate use (and tools like RSS feeds from Technorati) the better off we'll all be.

  19. Without viewing the article in question, and I don't feel like looking for it, I'm not going to state my opinion.

    Don't you think though that asking first for permission would have been a better idea though? You can now see what happens since you didn't. May be legal but it may also not be the best way to have done it.

  20. But you DID state your opinion. And I disagree: technorati is just a search engine, and it doesn't post entire articles even with the RSS thingy. I'd call it well within fair use. If there's a copyright violation (and I don't think there is), it's on Technorati's part.

  21. No I mean my opinion about if the article in question was copied or not.

    I have no problem with fair use. Heck, I have a screen capture site. I just think that permission is the best way to go. Heck, that's what Weird Al does even though he doesn't have to for example.

  22. Yeah, which is why we've been deprived of a Weird Al version of "When Doves Cry" for lo, these many years.

  23. Dr Mike - I'm not about to give you a discourse on RSS but you have the wrong end of the stick entirely.

    RSS feeds allow you to give snippets (i.e. a paragraph not an article) of blog posts related to the same subject matter you yourself are writing about for the reasons I mentioned above.

    Permission is not required (nor indeed can it be given) as by virtue of the fact a blogger syndicates their blog, blog syndication sites such as Technorati take the blogs and spread them far and wide - that is how blogs become so endemic/viral.

    I have no clue what is going to come into the RSS stream - that is dependent upon who posts what and 'pings' an RSS syndication site - so unless I use my as yet undeveloped skills of prescience (i.e. knowing things before they happen), I cannot obtain permission to something which does not even require it.

    This entire thread has been out there on the internet for the last 2+ months due to a misunderstanding of the dissemination of blogs - it will continue to be on the net for years to come with as well.

    Now I'm not happy with the situation but I know it was not borne out of malice but instead lack of understanding. We are all ignorant on diffent subjects for sure but to put this puppy to bed for once and for all:

    This is not a copyright infringement issue nor is there anything nefarious about what has happened.

    Think of it this way - RSS feeds are like another form of search engine results targeted to a particular page on your site.

  24. You could provide both links, so we could see for ourselves. Both the original and the alleged copy. If RSS is a legit tool for producing content, I may start a few blogs consisting of ALL RSS feeds, set to the max....easy way to get hits....rather weak, but effective I guess.

    Before anyone jumps on that was sarcasm, I like to write my own content.

    How much of your content is on the other site? From what I can work out the defense is that it's "a paragraph" which was achieved by the quoting script of an RSS feed. If that's the case then I see no problem. If it's a big chunk, then RSS does not explain it, only intentional theft by someone with posting privileges does.

    I am curious, is it on Tobriens site? His/her name is not a link, as it is with most....does that imply anything? Is it on a site owned or run by someone he/she knows?

  25. Dirk, a nonlinked name generally means that the poster doesn't have a ID, that's all.

    That's an interesting point that when the blog in question publishes a feed it is essentially giving permission for its content to be literally syndicated. And I think it clear there was malicious intent here; secondchance is perhaps more aggressive about controlling external sites than most experienced bloggers. But there is a substantive difference between posting a snippet, such as Technorati does, and posting the entire post, which blog scrapers do. We need to recognize that simply having a feed doesn't mean one gives up the digital rights to one's content, just that one allows people to read it in a non-blog format. Re-posting entire blog posts to third party blogs without permission is not legal.

    Just how much does the Technorati widget show, anyway? It's my understanding that it shows at most a single paragraph, and always correctly attributes the feed. I'm sure their lawyers have been all over this since the word Go and it's clean.

  26. Right guys - take a look at the main blog site:

    Look down the right hand side to see the RSS feed from Technorati and you will see the syndicated snippets.

    Each snippet does not just take "content" - it is displaying snippets with LIVE URL's back to the originator's blog - hence they get the benefit of:
    1) Backlinks for the purposes of SEO
    2) Traffic to their site from people reading my blog posts

    Dirk - there are no links to show you - the RSS feed content is DYNAMIC so if you want to find the post Craig originally referred to, this sits only in a search engine cache. You are indeed right about blog scrapers taking content and creating autopilot sites - this is an illegitimate use of such content.

    RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication (among other definitions) and this is essentially the backbone of the blog universe. This is how you can subscribe to blog posts using your browser/newsreader etc (there is another standard called ATOM but I'll not confuse the issue).

    Raincoaster - I think you probably missed out on a "no" in your post above (i.e. ...there was no malicious intent here... ;-)

    Technorati is one of the oldest "blog sites". It acts as an aggregator and syndicator of blogs.

    If any of you want to keep a hold on your copyright AND restrict your blog entries from permeating the blogosphere then the choice is simple:

    Go offline.

    If you blog and ping your site - you have announced your thoughts to the world. Even if you did not ping any of the syndication sites they have bots which crawl looking for content to disseminate and then of course you have the normal search engine spiders crawling and indexing your site too.

  27. Ahh Technorati in action.....random paragraphs....hmm. I understand the concept, if not the value. I get the point that it's related via tags to your just seems strange to me to have random paragraphs appearing, mid paragraph too. I suppose it wouldn't jar with me if it at least picked a starting point as the start of a sentence......but that's an issue with Technorati.

    I accept the concept of it being dynamic, I do wonder why it's taken until now to provide a comparison link for us to see that it's the dynamic content which is the issue. Surely your first defense should have included that would have shortened this thread, and saved you responding twice more.

  28. @Dirk:

    From Mr. O'Brien's FIRST post:

    (as the RSS feed is dynamic and the results would have been updated with new blog posts from other authors - of course this depends on the volatility of the subject matter).

    Just accept that you don't see the value of it, but he does.

    Edit: Are we done here?

  29. tobrien1, calm down. Yes, I missed a "no" and it's too late to edit that. But yes, snippets are content, they are just Fair Use content. And most of us do know how the internet works, thank you for your lesson though.

  30. Judy, I DO accept it. I seem to remember pointing out that it was an issue I had with Technorati. All we need now is a confirmation that the Technorati spot on that site was indeed the place the alleged stolen content was seen on. And that it fits within the Technorati scripting rules of a paragraph or so....assuming that's done, we can wrap this up to a misunderstanding.

    When someone complains that someone else is stealing their work and passing it off as their own, without the two as comparisons, we have no way to guess. It could be genuine, it could be a statement intended to flame someone else, it could be a misunderstanding of how the systems work (which appears to be the case here).

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