Tuesday, August 28, 2007

David & Goliath

Here's the thing. I spend a fair amount of time working on my house, documenting it, taking photos and blogging about it. I enjoy writing and it's fun to document the progress on my house. I have given permission to anyone asking to link to my blog....or use a photo. In fact, I have zero problem with anyone within reason linking to my blog as long as they give credit where credit is due.

So, you can imagine my disappointment when I discovered an Australian commercial website, using some of my posts.....and taking credit for them. They actually have hijacked a Blogger page (it appears that they cut & pasted my Blogger page, it is not a link)....hacked it to have their logo at the top....removed the Blogger navigation bar, etc.....and made it appear to be coming from their website.

Hello....my blog is syndicated....the photos are on a Google server...the comments were posted to my blog....I have the damn doorbell in my house. Here is my original post. There is not even a question here. It appears they have done this to thousands of articles from different sources....making money off of it. Hard to believe.

I notified the company yesterday of copyright infringement. Today I politely notified their website designer, Wiliam Web Design, and the isp requesting that my work be removed. I've removed the photos they used from the Google server, but it takes up to 24 hours for them to vanish.

On Friday, I start putting the screws on. Happily, the Australian Attorney General has a very convenient website and takes copyright infringement seriously. This company has not begun to see the fury that StuccoHouse can unfurl when ticked. Let's hope they do the right thing before that happens.

Advice, opinions, tactics....all welcome.

13 comments:

jm said...

That is totally whacked! Some of their other articles have nothing to do with homes, either. Weird.

StuccoHouse said...

Lol....I know. I'm actually sitting here laughing. Could a company be so oblivious to copyrights that they would think that was ok? They need to talk to their legal dept. once in a while.

Looks like they have "seen the light" though....the entire "Reading Room" is gone from their website.

I really have no problem with links to my blog....but hijacking a post as your own was a bit more than I could take.

Think of the time it took to hack all of those posts....lol.

StuccoHouse said...

Another update - I just received an email from the website designer. He confirmed that my post has been removed from their site. He actually was quite nice.

All is good with the world.

Kathy from NJ said...

Just curious, how did you find out your post was there?

The Litter Box House said...

Yeah Kathy, I was wondering the same thing...

Andrea

Ranty said...

This really stinks. The only thing I can think of is that some people are trying to get traffic to their pages (for advertising purposes?) by lifting content which attracts people. I dunno...

A friend of mine wrote about how she dealt with this problem on her blog:

http://lagringasblogicito.blogspot.com/2007/02/sorry-no-posts-matched-your-criteria.html

Hope that helps.

StuccoHouse said...

Wow, this company is not too bright. They reposted a bunch of "their articles" today. Looks like they have removed the Google based blogs. But Worpress is still their in all it's glory. They must have some kind of death wish cuz I'd think this is the kind of stuff a copyright attorney that wants to make a name for themself (and a gajillion in fees) would die for. Ac ouple of thousand acts or copyright infringement...all easily documented.....even after they were made aware of the problem....in two countries that have an agreement regarding infringement. I probably blew my chance on a finders fee. Damn.

You can see their work by just changing the number at the end of the link I provided to my article. Scum.

Hmmm....without giving them too much info.....they missed some html (although they removed some)when they did their little "modification." They forgot enough of the html to give me a clue ;-)

Santa Fe Dehumidifers said...

Should this happen in the future I would recommend asking them to remove the content. If they fail to remove it you can have a lawyer write up a Cease and Desist order, which you can then send to them and submit to www.chillingeffects.org which will seriously affect their internet taffic through search engines. Google does apply DMCAct restrictions to their search results.

Anonymous said...

Someone else I know had a similar problem (someone was taking pictures of their family and information off of their blog and claiming it as their own in a different blog). Here is a link to a post they did on how to protect information/photo's if your interested.

http://www.chasingbabies.com/2007/05/24/protect-the-innocent/

Dulcie said...

That is some crazy crap. I remember a couple years ago seeing a cosmetics company web page which was a complete rip off of Sephora.com. All the styling and the images were the same -- it was bizarre. Did the designer just give up? So weird when people think that this stuff is okay.

StuccoHouse said...

Thanks for the links....I reviewed them all :-) Very good info. to do a search for a couple of sentences from a post......and see what Google pulls up.

I wish I had known about chillingeffects.org. It would have been worth it to send a formal cease & desist.....just so I could submit it to an organization with that scary of a name. That would have given me great satisfaction ;-)

When all was said and done, they had 7 of my posts pirated on their website. I hope Google & Wordpress nails them.

Paul said...

Way to stay on them in get something done. That's great! Last year I found a website that was doing the same thing to my blog. I only had to ask once and they were very nice about it, assured me it wouldn't happen again, etc, etc. Glad to see you won in the end. There are lots of scammers out there trying to make a buck stealing content. Unfortunately a lot of web site owners don't pay attention to who is stealing from them, so most of them get away with it.

Omar said...

Holy cow that's crazy! I'm a little late to the party, but wow. :(

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