I Was Plagiarized

Posted: September 8, 2013 in Living and Life, Reflections
Tags: , , ,

I’m going to share with you a story that’s been developing all this weekend, and has had me pretty steamed off every time I think about it. I had one of my blog posts plagiarized. Yes, plagiarized. Someone took one of my blog posts and tried to pass it off as my own work. Anyone who creates something, puts their heart and soul into it, and gives it to the world fears that someone will try to take advantage of their work for reasons we can’t understand. And it happened to me.

I found out about it because I left links to other blogs and blog posts in my post. Whenever someone on WordPress gets their blog or their blog post linked to another blog or blog post, they get a funny little comment in their comment box that shows how the link was used. You know, it looks like this:

[…blah blah blah, this was the link, blah blah blah, are you smiling reading this right now?…]

One of the links in a recent blog post I wrote linked to another post on my blog. So when someone decided to copy and paste the text and pictures from my blog onto a post of their own, they inadvertently pasted in a link to my blog and I was alerted that someone had left a link in the form of one of those comments. I followed the link to the blog of the person who had used the link to my blog, and imagined how surprised and then angry I was that someone was trying to pass off my work as theirs. Because there was the blog post in its entirety, against a green background and with the author’s name at the bottom of the post, trying to suggest he wrote it.

I looked up Word Press’s policy on this and I sent a warning to this guy, whose name and blog I will not mention because A) he doesn’t deserve getting mentioned and B) I’d like to think he’ll learn from this lesson, so a public shaming won’t be very conducive to that. It was suggested by WordPress that I leave a comment asking him to take down the post. I did so, but I never heard back. So I told the DCMA, the authorities who monitor WordPress blogs for this sort of stuff. They were on it and within a day they’d taken down the post and notified me.

I checked the blog for the last time to see if my stolen post was still there. It wasn’t. And I felt such a well of happiness, like all that simmering anger had been swept away.

I’m telling you, plagiarism is a nasty thing to happen to you. But the good news is that I was able to handle it in a mature way, that the guy made no money off of it (which would mean his troubles would be far from over if he had made money off my work), and that now I can put it all behind me. And if, God forbid, any of you get plagiarized, you can  fight back. Not just for blog posts, but for any work you create (helps to get a copyright for things you intend to make a profit off of, by the way).

But right now, I’m glad this business is behind me and I won’t have to deal with it again, at least not any time soon. And for anyone who’s been plagiarized before, you have my sympathy and my understanding. It’s horrible when it happens, but we can fight back. And we become stronger when we do.

  1. Which post it was that was ripped off? Can you say that much?

  2. karmicangel says:

    Whoah. That is brutal. I’m glad you got it taken down, but I’ll bet you’ll be watching this guy’s blog pretty avidly from now on… does he even have the same focus on writing horror for his blog?

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