Copyright infringement

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    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.



    Yeah, which is why we’ve been deprived of a Weird Al version of “When Doves Cry” for lo, these many years.



    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.



    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 one… 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?



    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.



    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.



    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 content…….it 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 link… would have shortened this thread, and saved you responding twice more.




    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?



    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.



    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).



    Raincoaster – I’m chilled, didn’t ever break into a stride let alone a sweat ;-)

    Dirk – “…I do wonder why it’s taken until now to provide a comparison link…” – too many X-Files mate, no ulterior motives or anything nefarious, no link provided coz it was already mentioned by Craig and I’m not on here for advertising purposes.

    Judy – Done, dusted, finito, caput.

    See you all on another thread/site.



    tobrien1, you may have misread my post. At time time did I state that permission was required to display an RSS feed. I said it was the polite thing to do. If you’re using another person’s work for the main content of your own site, even if you’re just doing snippets, you should do the right thing and get permission.

    Please remember that I do webhosting semi-professionally. if you would like to read what’s come though my DMCA email address for this year, I’ll give you a login. I’ll also be happy to point you to many sites that have been ToS’ed here and elsewhere for doing what you’re doing.



    It just occurred to me, you said (as the reason you didn’t post your link) you weren’t here to advertise or draw extra traffic (I’m paraphrasing here) ….yet now we see seems to be ALL about traffic generation, linking strategies, affiliate marketing etc. Why is the forum getting special treatment from you? It seems by your blog that it’s ALL about the income generation, which I assume includes EVERY possible opportunity to post a link somewhere in the hope that someone will click on it, and somewhere down the line..make you some money.

    This is an odd disturbance, which kinda undercuts the reason given. Also, for me, it’s up to the original complainer to confirm where he saw the alleged copyright theft, and for him to confirm that with the understanding he now has on the way Technorati works that it was a misunderstanding, which is now resolved. He may have seen it in the main content section which cannot be explained by the Technorati feed, it may have been removed since due to the complaint.



    Right on dirk. I made the same observations too. What blog? IMO what I saw was a splog.



    Apologies Judy – thought I’d done but promise this will be my last on the subject.

    From what I’ve seen on this thread there is a whole lot of FUD knocking around and people are gonna believe what they’re gonna believe no matter who says what.

    Just put yourself in my shoes – if a misrepresentation of you were made online and read by who knows how many, wouldn’t you want to set the record straight?

    That was and is the only point of my participation in this forum thread.

    The phrase “Damned if you do, damned if you don’t” springs to mind.



    If you have a blog going which is a traffic generator, surely part of that is getting into the habit of including at least ONE link which will help you when you post ANYTHING ANYWHERE… must be hard to fight the instinct to include a link huh? It pokes a huge hole into the brush off “oh I forgot” kinda response.

    I can think of a couple of possible reasons why fought the urge to stay linkless……

    1 – You didn’t want anyone clicking through with the idea of “copyright infringement” on their minds….it’s not a great word association if you want them to buy stuff from your affiliate codes.

    2 – You may have been caught out and wanted time to remove it before giving out the link and playing the “innocent and wrongly accused victim”

    3 – You know (by the subject matter of your blog) that search engine spiders love backlinks, textlinks etc…..they assume a better linked site is more popular. So having other peoples text appear via RSS feeds helps your search engine performance.

    I also notice that you didn’t respond to the question too…..for some reason I’m picturing a used car salesman here. Deflection of an accusation only makes you appear guilty……it’s why many people no longer vote.

    I did click through a few blog entries on your site, they remind me of the “get rich quick” scams you often get spammed with. All with seemingly invaluable advice which will guarantee to make you a millionaire if you buy this (insert product via affiliate code here).

    In fairness it seems that not ALL of your blog seems aimed at this…for those who can’t find it……look right down the list, there are a few tucked away at the bottom which appear more personal than financial.

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