Okay, this just sort of sat funny with me.
First, the setup:
Copyscape finds copies of your content on the Web. You can use Copyscape to identify sites that have copied your content without permission. Copyscape will also show you who is quoting your site.
The blurb from Writers Weekly:
~Has Anyone Stolen Your Articles?~
One of our authors found a website had stolen his content to promote their own services! Find out who's using your work without authorization (no charge!) at Copyscape.
I've written numerous articles so this interested me and the reason for adding it to this post is to show that this topic is fresh in my mind.
Now, the story:
Anyway... over the weekend I get an email from someone asking about something I wrote and he wanted to use it in an article he was working on - that was very flattering... but he drops this bomb in the email:
I'd like to write an article about your concept and make reference to you and your ebook in it. I'd like to have readers of the magazine send me an email if they'd like your ebook, and I'll send it to them with a link to your site. Would that be all right with you?
Uh, excuse me? If they send you an email?
I really appreciate the offer and the very kind words - but I'd prefer if you just sent people to the site, instead of requiring them to send you an email. I can't stop you from doing whatever you like, but I assume since you asked if it would be okay that you would agree with my request to remove the barrier of someone sending you an email. It just seems a little strange that I don't require people to register in any way from getting to the material that it should remain that way. Thoughts?
So, you'd think we were squared away, right?
Thanks for the quick and thoughtful reply. The reason I wanted to interpose myself between your site and the reader is that it allows me to obtain some possible leads for future engagements. I've never done this with a free piece written by someone else -- but I thought it might serve both our purposes.
No. Really? I would never have guessed that. My purpose? How do you know what my purpose is?
So, I went to check out this person's web site to check things out:
Hmmm... this looks very familiar to me...
Ah, okay, this is where I've seen it before.
Gee - I've had numerous conversations in the last couple of weeks with people that have centered on the same subject: People are inherently good. I've been defending that position like crazy... but come on... this is nuts.
[picture me scratching my head]
If you are going to tell people that the way to succeed in business is to be remarkable, like this guy is doing, you can't go around borrowing everyone elses ideas... that kind of defeats the purpose, right? Where is the original content? Where are your ideas?
I'm not the most original or creative guy in the world, but when I borrow something I give full credit to the person who created it.... like the book summaries I write. I call them book summaries and there is no editorial content whatsoever. I don't charge for them, I don't force someone to send me an email to get them. I don't expect anything in return.
Ah, who knows, maybe I'm just being overly sensitive...
Oh, come to think of it - I hope that Fouroboros doesn't read this post! I steal... uh, I mean borrow, from that guy all the time! Doh!