blogger plagiarismIf I come across a blog that is republishing content without attribution, I first send a polite email to the blog owner asking him or her to remove the material. This method is extremely effective and works in 99% of the cases.

Sometimes things gets a bit complicated especially in cases when the splog owner doesn’t have too much at stake and hence decides to completely ignore your request.

This is exactly what happened with digital-boom.blogspot.com – a blogger hosted blog that carried a copy of almost every article from Digital Inspiration. The blog was deleted by Blogger DMCA team yesterday though you may still see some content in the Google Cache and Digg

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This hard-working splogger, who identified himself as Anushka Singh, manually edited every post before republishing to ensure that all traces of "labnol" were removed from the links.

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After making a copy of the article on his blog, he would religiously Digg those stories under the alias "Manish Jain" (his real name) and digitalboom.

Timeline of Events

September 30: I filed a DMCA complaint with Blogger via Fax as they don’t accept emails.

October 1: Received an acknowledgement from Google saying they have received the DMCA notice and they asked me to provide the specific URLs of the posts where the infringing content is located.

Since the splog in question had reprinted hundreds of articles and it would have taken me several hours to compile a complete list, I picked around 20 infringing URLs and sent that list back to blogger by email.

October 2: Got another mail from Blogger saying they’ll contact again after they’ve finished processing the complaint.

October 7: The splog was finally removed from Blogger and all the content was deleted.

So it took around seven days and quite a bit of effort to get one splog removed from Blogger but still, it was well worth the effort.

Also see: How to Deal with Online Plagiarism

Content Theft on WordPress

Now let’s consider a similar scenario but with WordPress.com. When Arpit stumbled upon a WordPress blog copying his articles, he opened a new thread in the WordPress.com support forums. The staff moderators were quick to react and they deleted the duplicate posts within 15 minutes of the complaint.

This may have been an exceptionally quick response as WordPress.com too requires you to send formal DMCA notices, but the fact that they have a dedicated staff who monitors and responds to such kind of complaints even in public user forms makes things a little easy for content publishers who may be victims of plagiarism.