Sunday, May 6, 2012

How to report for blog posts plagiarism?

So, yesterday in the evening, I came to know about a site which was copying my articles, thanks to Bhumika, Tapaswini and Dipti :) I don't want to link to the spammy website so linking to the fb discussion here: http://www.facebook.com/bhumikanewlove/posts/449804748378868. I checked out the website and there was no contact info and their twitter and fb links were not working. So, I was a little clueless as to what should I do.

So, Google becomes God at such times :) I found out this very nice blog post on reporting plagiarism. I checked out the website which was copying my articles was hosted on wordpress so I went to the wordpress spam report link and submitted the report but the report was not exactly submitted as they did not recognise the website as wordpress one. But, it did give me a complete information on who the website belonged to, the hosting service and the e-mail address of the owner.

So, I contacted the owner and told him about this. And, fortunately (as of now), the owner is nice, he replied immediately and said he would delete the articles. I will paste a snippet of the conversation as well.
Me: I am the owner of the blog 'Perfect Skin Care for you'. I recently came across your website today and noticed that you had copied many of my recent articles. I request you to remove those articles from the website. And, kindly do not paste any of my articles without prior permission.

Owner of the website: will do. It was an autoblog someone set up for me a while back. I'll delete them in due course. Give me some time.

Me: Kindly delete all my articles in at most a week. Btw, I didn't know that websites copy articles automatically from blogs!!! Do tell me sometime how it works.

Owner of the website: Well, its simple. There are many wordpress plugins they utilise. It automatically searches the internet for related material to the website and automatically posts it.
This was like a reality check for me that not only robot scripts are written to automate plagiarism but such plugins are freely available in wordpress. So, if you find any website (and not a blog) copying your content, you can be assured that its the robot scripts running. So, what steps you should take:
  • Contact the author of the blog / website through Contact Us page. Most of the times, it wouldn't be available because they are spam blogs and websites. 
  • Check which platform is it hosted on. And, contact the spam reporting team of the platform. You will find this information in the blog post I referred to above. 
  • If its a website with a proper domain name (which it will be most of the time), go to http://whois.domaintools.com/ and paste the website link in the search bar given there. It will display all the information about the website including the owner name, the e-mail address with which it was created and even the hosting server of the website. 
  • Now, your work gets easier. Email the owner of the website. If you get no response within a week, I would suggest you to contact the hosting servers regarding the plagiarism issue.
And, when I was writing this post, Padmaja posted another link. So, off to another mission!!! Adios, folks till tomorrow. And, readers of all blogs, please contact the blogger if you find their duplicate posts anywhere online. It would really help all of us.
Image Courtesy: theinstitute.ieee.org

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