Remember being in school and needing to create a reference list for your reports? Or in college, the parenthetical references or footnotes that pointed to where you got your stats, quotes, or information? It prevented you from the illegal practice of plagiarism.
Apparently, now, it’s become a common thing to steal content in the blogosphere. There were sites some time ago like Copyscape that helped prevent static websites from being content-jacked by others who where lazy, bad writers or who simply had unoriginal content ideas. The mighty CTRL + C, CTRL + V enabled millions to easily copy and use others peoples intellectual property as their own.
The problem with this is it’s a crime. Just as it’s uncool to take someones furniture out their home and place it in yours to sit on, it’s uber low to copy others blog posts and use them as your own especially if their is no trackback to the original content. The same rules applies to pictures and other copyrighted material.
It’s fine to be inspired and to report on something you’ve read but it’s courteous and good manners to place proper references in the blogging sense by using links and photo credits and giving credit where it is due.
If that’s a challenge, there are ways to come up with content without being slimy. Here are a couple of my favorite:
• PLR (Private Label Rights). Sites like EASYPLR.com or a service like Posts & PR can send you content that can be downloaded for a nominal fee and packaged and used without accrediting the original author. It’s really that simple.
• Guest posts. Set up a submission form or email address on your site or blog where people can contribute their content to be posted and used to engage your readers.
• Writing services, copywriters and outsourcing. Content marketing services like Posts & PR, Zerys, or even freelance writers can provide you material to develop your website, brochures, or other marketing collateral.
In this day and age of abundant resources and inspiration for developing content, there really is no excuse for swiping someone else’s hard work. While much of it can’t be prevented, we hope there are a few good people who will go about the right way of doing things and find other ways to kill the need for plagiarism.