Watch for Copyright violations

Protecting your brand on the web involves a lot of different things. One aspect of this is recognizing when others have stolen your content and are republishing in on their site as their own. When they steal your content and reuse it, you have the risk of having duplicate content problems.

Tools such as Copyscape are great for helping you detect these types of problems. You feed the tool with a URL and it determines is that page has been scraped and republished elsewhere.

But there is another aspect of copyright infringement that fewer publishers thing of – that being the possibility that they themselves are the ones guilty of infringement. Even if they conduct their business with the purest heart of gold, this can still happen, so let’s discuss how.

Who writes the content for your web site? Where are they getting their material from? Did they lift it frmo another source and make just some simple changes to it to disguise it? This happened to us recently, and fortunately we discovered it before the problem got to far. We discovered it because we had a page on a web site that should have been somewhere on the map rankings wise, but was not. We knew something was wrong.

The lesson is that you have to have a process for checking their work. This becomes even more important if you produce content in high volume. The more you produce, the more likely it becomes that one of your writers will become a little bit sloppy. Don’t let it happen to you. Remember – “People so what is inspected, not what is expected”.

Of course, I don’t attend to apply that old saying to everything that all people do, and in fact it applies only to a small minority. But if you are doing a lot of content generation, it will happen to you sooner or later. You would be wise to protect yourself from this.


  1. says

    As a copywriter, you might say that I’m on the other side of the fence here, but then again I no longer deal with web content, but rather with sales copy, which is a very different beast.

    There is a third way to mess up even further this copyright infringement problem. Your writers could very well sell the same content to multiple clients at once or before. And no this is not a theoretical problem, it actually happens, so Copyscape, while useful, still has its limits.

    Bottom line is that the best way to work around this issue is to simply only collaborate with those people whom you trust.

    Regards, George

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