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Plagiarism

 
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Frenchlady



Joined: 09 Dec 2013
Posts: 112
Location: Dordogne

PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 10:23 am    Post subject: Plagiarism Reply with quote

I was just wondering if anyone else has suffered this - where someone is taking your information from your own website. There is a B&B opened up close to us and 2 of my photos have appeared on their facebook page and one is also on their own website. The photos are definitely mine as I have compared them both together and every leaf etc is in the same place! My photos were taken before this B&B opened. I know any photos on Facebook can be shared or copied but I think putting one on their website is taking the ...... Also some of the text on their website is practically word for word my text with a little tweaking. It is not the first time I have had this happen. One lady copied a whole page from my website (minus photos) with all the links to tourist sites too. It took me a long time to work on my own website and they can just come along and copy. I brought this to this ladies attention but it is still on her site - she said she thought I would not mind!!!!!
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French Cricket



Joined: 10 Apr 2008
Posts: 3053
Location: French Pyrénées

PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 10:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, Frenchlady, I've been a victim of plagiarism - I think a few of us on here have.

Some say it's flattering - but I believe it to be theft. It's very unpleasant to have to deal with and challenge, but it has to be done. I have ranted on here about it before and am not going to go there again, other than to say that you have my full sympathy.
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greenbarn



Joined: 30 May 2009
Posts: 5900
Location: The Westmorland Dales, Cumbria

PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 11:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Theft. Infringement of copyright. Make them aware that you know, tell them they're in violation of Copyright Law (even better if you can quote the name of the law in full) give them a deadline to take your material down before you report them to Google for content theft and take action etc etc.
Maybe start with giving them a way out by saying you've noticed your material on their website and of course you don't know how they came by it but do they realise etc... and please could they remove it. Just in case a) they genuinely didn't know(!) or b) they knew but didn't think they'd be rumbled, but can pretend innocence and remove the stuff.
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nealh



Joined: 26 May 2012
Posts: 109
Location: Cyprus

PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 1:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If a potential First Lady tries to get away with copying/stealing the words of others then who can blame the average John Doe in having a try at doing it too.

Not saying it's right, but perhaps a symptom of the times we live in. Information is available easily on the WWW which makes it easy to copy too.

Agree a gentle word in the transgressor's ear to begin with and then more strident statements if that should fail.
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Nigel Goodwin



Joined: 04 Apr 2013
Posts: 654
Location: Newquay Cornwall

PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 2:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I understand the reaction, but what are your losses arising from this alleged breach of copyright?

If it gets heavy and legal, that is the first question which will be asked - how much are you going to sue for?

Even worse, how can you demonstrate these losses?

Similarly, how much time and effort are you going to spend, which may be better applied to improving your own text and pictures?

Many ways to win this one.

ps. did you personally take every single one of your photos (which are excellent), including aerial shots ? If it was just a sunset pic which was taken, I wouldn't worry too much. If they are shots by a professional photographer whom you hired, maybe they have steps they can take.
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Frenchlady



Joined: 09 Dec 2013
Posts: 112
Location: Dordogne

PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 2:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't intend to go down the legal route. Just a little knarked that I have spent time, plenty of it, gathering info and taking photos over the last 14 years of business. Always updating as things change. Bad enough if the other B&B was miles away, but just round the corner is kind of rubbing our nose in it. I have made them aware that 2 of the photos they have used were taken from our site so will see if that gets them out into the undergrowth to take their own photos.

Yes, all the photos on our gallery were taken by me, excluding the 2 aerial shots were were given to us by a local guy.
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NeatandPicky



Joined: 30 Aug 2007
Posts: 353
Location: Pissouri Bay, Cyprus

PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 2:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes - has happened to me more than once by different people and I find it very annoying. In the worst case big chunks of text, page headings, even hyperlinks.

Not sure I would bother for photos, but for text next time I would put in an official complaint (there's an online form) to Google before giving them a chance to change anything.

In my case it was a neighbour (same road, similar villa). Her web designer daughter copied my text. I complained to her. She tweaked the text minimally (switching order of words in a sentence), but when Google did their automatic check it was sufficient to render it OK with them. Even a stranger unfamiliar with my text would be able to identify the parts of her website that she wrote herself (full of errors!)

I recently found that she'd copied again on her new Airbnb listing, so she learned nothing.
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JanB



Joined: 17 Aug 2012
Posts: 506
Location: Near Bath

PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 3:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This happened to me and it was my entire website, word for word with the exception of the property name which they nataurally changed to their own.

It would have been annoying enough for anyone some distance away to do it, but the person was operating a holiday property only two miles from mine.

The worst aspect is that Google downrank sites with similar content, so your site can be penalised through no fault of your own. What gives people the right to copy and not work at finding their own text to sell their property?

I politely contacted the person who copied me and was met with "oh, it isnt illegal as it is on the Web". I advised him this is not true and that, if he did not change his website wording for something he had created, rather than blatantly copy pasting my unique words and phrases, I would be prepared to take legal action against him.

He did oblige, albeit grudgingly and with no apology. Rather a grumpy "oh, if you are afraid of a bit of competition" attitude!

I always felt rather smug to see him finding it hard to fill his calender and some luke warm reviews. What goes around, comes around. Ooooh, slap my wrist.......!
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Casscat



Joined: 05 Jul 2014
Posts: 2661
Location: Andalucía

PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 6:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had someone copy large chunks of my narrative. I contacted them about it but they ignored me so as they listed on various sites in addition to their own I contacted all their rental sites and reported them. The only one to really take things seriously was Holiday Lettings thanks to whom the offending text was removed from all the plagiarist's sites. There are several sites you can use to scan the internet for plagiarism - in fact it was via a link on here that I even knew about the theft of my stuff. I think the one I used was this one, but I cannot remember 100%: http://www.copyscape.com/
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kevsboredagain



Joined: 20 Jan 2007
Posts: 3209
Location: France

PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 6:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've also had a complete website stolen. I noticed because the stats showed it being accessed from a hard drive as the code still had my stats javascript in there. I found it online later and it was someone who lived in the same village! I reported it to Google who will remove such a copy from their search engine. I then found the guy on Facebook and told him I knew what he had done. It disappeared a while later.

I'm personally not bothered if someone pinches some photos or a piece of text but I draw the line at a whole website. With photos you can use Google image lookup to see if anyone else is using them.
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Jimbo



Joined: 19 Oct 2006
Posts: 3581
Location: Charente Maritime

PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 4:55 am    Post subject: Re: Plagiarism Reply with quote

Frenchlady wrote:
It took me a long time to work on my own website and they can just come along and copy.

No they can't. Not legally. Unless you acquiesce.

Quote:
If they are shots by a professional photographer whom you hired, maybe they have steps they can take.

Depends if you insisted on having the copyright to the pictures. In which case, you'll have to do the heavy lifting yourself.

Quote:
I don't intend to go down the legal route. Just a little knarked ...

A little knarked ...?

Plagiarism? Sounds such an innocuous word. Call it out as theft and the people who do it as criminals. If you don't confront them (try GB's suggestions as a kick-off), they'll sure as hell do it again and again.
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russellt



Joined: 09 Dec 2014
Posts: 328
Location: Ivybridge, Devon, UK

PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 6:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kevsboredagain wrote:
the code still had my stats javascript in there.


haha. That's a good one. On the assumption that most of these clowns have no idea what they are stealing, could a small javascript/jquery script be embedded in each page such that it calls an absolute url on the true owner's domain each time it is loaded(maybe to report it's current domain?).

Just a devious thought Twisted Evil
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Frenchlady



Joined: 09 Dec 2013
Posts: 112
Location: Dordogne

PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 1:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Reading above what has happened to you all it amazes me that, like me, the people stealing the info live so close. I am of the age where I was taught at school copying was something only cheats did. No, it is not just 2 photos they have taken but they copied my breakfast description and terms & conditions, albeit tweaked a little. The other lady stole the whole page and the links.

Oh well, just have to do as mentioned by JanB, wait and watch the reviews. The property was a B&B before and it lasted less than 2 years. Don't think we will be drinking buddies in the local watering hole.
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JanB



Joined: 17 Aug 2012
Posts: 506
Location: Near Bath

PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 2:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Frenchlady wrote:
Reading above what has happened to you all it amazes me that, like me, the people stealing the info live so close. I am of the age where I was taught at school copying was something only cheats did. No, it is not just 2 photos they have taken but they copied my breakfast description and terms & conditions, albeit tweaked a little. The other lady stole the whole page and the links.

Oh well, just have to do as mentioned by JanB, wait and watch the reviews. The property was a B&B before and it lasted less than 2 years. Don't think we will be drinking buddies in the local watering hole.


I think you should certainly contact the person and politely point out that she has copied your "unique words and phrases" - that is the best way to accurately describe the theft as single words by themselves in isolation dont count. Rather, it is when entire sentences, phrases or words are used then copied.

They may not be too happy about being rumbled out but at least they might just stop to think about it and prevent any further theft......
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Frenchlady



Joined: 09 Dec 2013
Posts: 112
Location: Dordogne

PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 3:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My photos have been removed from their site so that is a bonus. Now perhaps they will build their own business and get off the backs of others. Now to get on with my Summer season. Thanks for all your comments.
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