Sites stealing content

What do you do when other sites are picking up your content and they aren’t even giving you credit? Just a simple source or via link?

It’s something that is really clear cut if a site is copying your entire article, because it’s provable then, they have all your words, but what if you broke a story to the Internet and very soon afterwards another site has the same story, reworded, with no source reference, and they couldn’t have found it anywhere else other than your source, and they haven’t even credited that.

Personally I don’t think there is anything I could do. Sure I could write an email to them and suggest it, but you just know where that’s going to lead.

I had thought of banning their IP from my site and then trimming my feeds down to a certaing amount of words rather than an entire article, but then that hinders those who are reading the feeds anyway and perhaps also affects other people on that IP range – that is if I have to ban a range if this person is using a dynamic IP address.

You know what the easiest thing is, if the guy would just drop the chip from his shoulder and give the correct sources. Except that’s not in his best interests to do.

It’s strange, sometimes this kind of behaviour of other site owners coupled with the amount of sites writing the same material pounds home the idea of just scrapping Filmstalker and moving on, and yet at the same time it kicks me in the arse and tells me to keep going.

What would you do?

5 comments on “Sites stealing content”

  1. ghani Reply

    I’ve had that problem quite a bit with Knickers, and one solution i’ve thought of is to automatically add a line to the RSS feed version that puts a link back to your site on each post. That way, when they aggregate it you’ll still have a link?

  2. Simone Reply

    Oh Richard no! Dont scrap Filmstalker, please dont, or where else will we go?

    What about coming up with a portal for Filmstalker? This will force your regular poster to become registered members to and that they have to log in everytime they want to just browse and read. That way you can check the IP address of those who registers and can easily spot the repeat offenders and maybe deny them access, this might also help with your frequent spammers. Now your portal will just have snippets of your articles for that particular day, you can just whet our appetite by posting a related photo to your article and just maybe put some really enticing caption about the movie news. The question is, would these posters want to register and all? I know I would, so you got me!

  3. Richard Brunton Reply

    Hey Ghani, they’re being a lot more subtle than that, they’re reading the source article then rewriting it as their own. I think I’ll work that into my Feedburner feed though, thanks for the advice.

    I had thought of that Simone, hence the testing of some social software. Ideally I would love a programmer to help me out and get a custom portal made – but I can’t find one I can trust who is visitable face to face and has the time to help.

    We’ll see where we get with the beta testing.

  4. Rafe Telsch Reply

    I would get on a plane and fly somewhere and crack some skulls, but that’s just me.

    And actually, that’s not me… since I haven’t done it any of the times it’s happened to us.

    It definitely sucks. Unless you can get “exclusive” material that you can prove is only from your site, you’re pretty much hosed. And once more than one site is covering something without linking to you, you’ve pretty much lost all ability to lay claim to breaking the story… and the traffic that goes with it.

    I’ve been out of the loop for the past week, so I don’t know what story you might have broken, but I’m sorry to hear it’s happened to you. I have my suspicions as to who you’re talking about though. 🙁

  5. Richard Brunton Reply

    Cheers Rafe, good to know there are some nice people out there on similar sites. I’ve been talking to Josh about this and seems he has similar issues.

    Frankly I wouldn’t waste the ticket.

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