Whose blog is it anyway?
I had a discussion today on the topic of people stealing content from blogs, twitter feeds and the like. As it was the second time, and second different person, I had a discussion on this very topic about this week I thought I might offer some commentary on it.
In short. I don't care.
Look I do get that you put effort and thought into the content you provide. I mean between here and various forums over the years I don't know how much content I've provided, nor if it's all exactly high-quality riveting stuff, but a lot of it? For sure yes. And some of it good? I'd like to think so. So at any rate, I do empathize with you.
I should probably elborate what I mean by stealing content. If there is some, reasonable level of credit given then for the purposes of this post it's not stealing. This isn't a debate about the legal intricacies of intellectual property. That's a fine debate to have but what I post on a public internet site I don't need to have my permission asked to use the content. But do give credit where it's due. If the content is copied then say so and put the source person's name or company along with that statement. A link would be nice too but I don't consider that a make or break point. But if you don't mention it's copied, or the mention or name is in a 2 point font or in the HTML comments, well, then that's not really credit.
But even with all that I still don't care. Why? Well for starters it happens all the time, and much more than you probably want to know to be honest with you. But the reality is there is less than zero that you can actually do about it. You can make your content private and that might help, but even that's not a gaurantee and let's face it private content means a smaller audience for whatever thoughts, inspiration, rants, ideas or general ramblings you bring to the internet buffet.
And while I guess that's somewhat a cynical view there is another side to my views on this and it is this. The public internet is about information sharing. The things that you post on your blog, or your facebook page or on twitter are thoughts that scatter to the wind like so many dandelion seeds. Some are going to blow onto concrete and die. Some are going to be swept down into dark crevices you don't really want to know about. But some are going to take root and grow.
The internet empowers all of us with the power of mass-messaging. Anyone at any time can read your thoughts and agree or disagree with them, be inspired by them or find an answer in them. But at the same time it means that shady characters can try and claim them as their own. Does that drawback make it less empowering? I don't think so and more I tend to believe that shady characters tend to be shady in everything they do, and in the end get called out for it in one way or another.
I guess I think that more than anything I (or you or anyone else for that matter) has better things to do with my time than try and track down people who have so little in the way of original ideas that they have to try and steal mine.
Rob - May 7th 2010 10:48 AM
Max - May 10th 2010 7:55 PM
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