Have you ever seen your blog posted with someone else's name or find they are misusing your content? This is called a Splog where a plagiarist is scraping full feed content and republishing it easily. Content theft and plagiarism are common occurrences in the blogosphere.
Problems caused by SPLOGs include but are not limited to:
- Waste of valuable disk space and bandwidth
- Pollution of search engine results
- Damage of networking communities
How can you detect a Splog about your posts?
Create a Gmail account and set up Google Alerts to do the searching for your own content. Type in words or phrases you use in your blog. Then check your gmail daily to see any blogs that might have your content.
If you are concerned about your images being used without your permission:
- give your images unique file names
- search for that name in Google Image Search
Most plagiarists do not change image names when putting images up on their site.
Detect content theft by using the tips from "The 20 Best Free Anti-Plagiarism Tools"
Let's say you have an issue or concern about your blog. The Legal Issues Forum, moderated by Jonathan Bailey, who also runs Plagiarism Today, a leading resource about content theft, copyright and plagiarism issues on the web, discusses legal issues that face bloggers.
Sign up to this forum and post your concern. They will research the matter, suggest the best course of action, and locate information necessary to follow through. They will even post stock DMCA notices and cease and desist letters to help with that process.
They also deal with copyright issues including licensing, fair use, defamation, trademark, free speech issues, privacy and other issues of interest to bloggers. Visit the forums if these issues are affecting your blog.
How can you prevent content theft?
Preventing content theft can be done but it does more to annoy legitimate users than to stop plagiarists. Here are two tools to prevent image theft:
Pictureshark is a fast, free and powerful batch image watermarking tool that processes hundreds of images with a variety of effects and creates a hard to remove transluscent watermark.
Watermark.Ws lets you add text or an image over your copyrighted work enabling centrally-located and more powerful watermarks.
Here's yet another resource, called "What Do You Do When Someone Steals Your Content"
License your work
Registered Commons allows you to embed Creative Commons Licenses into your work. It lets you register your work, receive a certificate and an identification number, and gives you a timestamp plus a fingerprint of the work.
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