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How to Deal With Stolen Content

You spend days and weeks developing a content strategy and direction for your website, and then hours putting together a brilliant piece of content on your site.  You upload it, publish it, share it across your social media platforms, and start engaging with your audience about it. Sometime later, you have moved onto creating another piece of high quality content, but then find to your horror that someone has stolen the original article.

When you discover this happening, it can be frustrating, even heart breaking, especially if you see that this copied content has been shared and people are commenting on how great it is. What can you do about it?

Get in Touch with the Author/Website Owner

Granted, if someone has been lazy enough to copy and paste content straight from your website, the chances are that they aren’t going to bother responding to an email request asking them to either take the content down or give you credit as the original poster via a backlink.

At the same time, the site owner may have been given this by a freelance blogger or someone within their team and not checked it using Copyscape or another tool. While this is a big error of judgment on their part, it could be a genuine mistake and they may have done it in good faith.

As angry as you are, it serves to adopt a conciliatory tone when sending an email, USING THE CAPS LOCK and just threatening isn’t going to work. Simply make your request and state that you will “explore further action” if necessary.

Report the Site to Google

Like anything when you need to interact with Google, you need to take action first before getting in touch with them. If you can demonstrate that you’ve taken action to try and fix the situation yourself, Google will be far more sympathetic to you and more likely to find any investigation in your favour.

You can file a DMCA complaint through Google or use the DMCA website yourself, which also offers a number of additional services to help keep your content safe from being copied in the future.

Share the Content, Along With a Link Back to the Original

Contacting the website owner might not work, while Google and the DMCA will take time to deal with the content. Another option is to share the copied content through your social media accounts, while also sharing the original from our own site once more.

You’ll be amazed at the impact such a move will have.

An added sarcastic comment relating to how great a job the copying site has done in stealing your content is purely optional!

Written by
Posted · Feb 14, 2014
Categories · Content Marketing.
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