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Introducing a Shoddy Blogger

Want to see a slimey blog? A blog that tries to pass off content of other people as it’s own?

Have a look at Blogger Tips (no follow tag used) – a blog that is filled with either posts that are ‘free articles’ or other people’s content. In both types of posts there is no credit given to the original author.

I’ve got nothing against using free articles (I don’t think its the smartest way to build a blog) – but this blog isn’t even crediting them. Free articles are able to be freely posted on your blog – but you’re obligated to include a signature with a link to the author.

Do a Google search for the title of virtually every post on the blog and you’ll find it somewhere else.

For example compare:

What is Business Blog (no follow tag used)

with

What is a business blog?

They couldn’t even get the title right.

Why am I posting this? Well I’m getting sick of this type of blogging. In addition to that they don’t have any way of contacting them – they moderate their comments so one can’t protest that way and they’ve stolen a friend of mine’s content and are bringing the ‘ProBlogging’ segment of the wider blogging community into disrepute with this approach (and plus I haven’t had a rant for a little while).

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Yzabel says:

    Wow, what a loser.

    Funny, though, how these people seemingly expect to get away with it. There’s nothing easier than get them exposed; once the word is out, it can very quickly and easily spread. What’s interesting too is to see them try to weasel their way out of it once the fingers are pointed at them (I’ve seen this happen in art communities, and sometimes you won’t believe what kind of lame excuses they can come up with, or even answer to accusations while pretending being “friends of the offender, who doesn’t have access to his computer and can’t answer now” and other tricks).

    Ah, well. There’s a threefold law of return somewhere out there for these people. Sooner or later, they’ll get it back in their faces.

    Besides, they can never get up in the morning with the satisfaction that it’s “their” work. *We* can.

  2. duncan says:

    Darren
    Whois record:
    bloggertips.com
    Dzulhelmi Jumat
    1, Jln Mufakat, Kg Melayu Majidi
    Johor Bahru, Johor, my
    P: +012.7241677

  3. nortypig says:

    I personally prefer to tell and send people onto the real deal article myself but one has to ask – if you aren’t prepared to lose it then put it in print and not on the web perhaps? I know that sounds harsh but they are definately 2 separate mediums. When its all said and done they DO do this and as much as we complain it won’t change the world we operate in.

    By the same token I’ve had my work taken and used commercially by a larger business in the US and man I felt like garbage finding out that only days after a site went live the client called saying their contact form was online somewhere with a different name and someone else’s copyright in the footer. I approached the guy via email and he claimed it was just the pallette he was after then locked it away behind a password?? No apologies, zip. Quite a big firm too.

    In the end I could only walk away flattered to be worth ripping I guess. But annoying as it is that’s the Web as it operates. Simply don’t put stuff up if you can’t afford to lose it, write a book instead.

    (all flames are humbly welcome to tear strips off my incorrigible hide but that’s my own perspective on this one, sorry)

  4. duncan says:

    Nortypig
    WTF!!!!!!!! Stealing peoples work, and then not giving credit on top is bad form (no I’m not say stealing is good, but you can quote part and give credit and its fair use).

    Forgive me if I feel I’ve just entered the twightlight zone after reading your comment. Now, since you advocate theft I know a few spam bloggers (although they don’t actually like me, not surprisingly) who are always on the lookout for content to steal, I’ll drop them an email and ask them to start stealing your content since its…well….ok according to your comment.

  5. duncan says:

    Norty
    I’ve just been reading your blog some more and now I know where you are coming from, your from Tasmania, this says it all. :-)

  6. John says:

    Darren, it looks just like your blog. lol.

  7. HART says:

    If you do a search for the titles on technorati, you also see this person under different domain aliases too e.g. http://blog.bizrepublic.com/ he has some fancy .php script to change top name (tips vs tip$) ..

    As for Nortypig’s comments, I laughed after I read the (let’s face it – the stupid) comment .. especially where he said By the same token I’ve had my work taken and used commercially by a larger business in the US .. but, then I looked at his site – those before and after pictures of designs of TheNews.com.au looked pretty good and identical ..

    I think I was less impressed with Duncan’s comments .. it was like being in 1st grade. What’s wrong with Tasmania? Being from Canada I don’t get that reference..

  8. Andy Merrett says:

    See how this sort of trash starts making us legitimate people tear strips off one another. Not quite sure how encouraging someone to steal someone’s work because you don’t agree with their viewpoint, or criticising their country, particularly helps the cause.

    I can actually empathise with Nortypig’s viewpoint, despite the childish rebuttal of him. I now wholly expect to see “jokes” about my blog and London/England – as culturally refined as some of us are here.

  9. dannyFoo says:

    There’s no harm plugging good articles on your website or blog, but ‘grabbing’ the articles and not ‘respect’ the original author is just way too low as a blogger or a person who started a website. And the guy who made the website is going to get hammered very soon because I’m going to publish the WhoIs.

    p/s: And I live in Malaysia.. oh joy.. LoL!

  10. duncan says:

    HART
    Making fun at Tasmanian’s is an Australian thing, it wasn’t meant as a joke. Darren often makes fun of me for living in Western Australia, as I stir him about living in bleak city, its all meant in jest. Australia is a Federation of 6 states and two territories all of whom were individual colonies prior to federation so theres a fair bit of difference from one state to the next. As long as Darren doesn’t start saying he barracks for Collingwood we’ll be ok :-)

  11. duncan says:

    sorry that should be “was meant as a joke”. my bad.

  12. Edrei says:

    Oh crap…I’m Malaysian as well. I apposlogise for idiots like that. Like Danny said, the best we can do is handle it well…unofficially and I’ve handled quite a few that way as well. Thanks for the heads up Darren.

  13. Lee Wye Jon says:

    Trust me… there are more than a few assholes doing that in Malaysia. The sad thing is they make good money off it. If I had time I might wanna start my own copy n paste blog :)

  14. HART says:

    DUNCAN… OMG .. you live in *gasp* Western Australia? the horror .. the horror :-p j/k Never been there, hope to one day .. well, West of Brisbane anyway ~ up to the Red Rock.

    Back to this blog entry and comments .. the stealing content is hardly the big picture here anyway – this guy is also stealing Darren’s design, exact wording in the menus, and copykat’ing the categories and placement of adsense ads. It’s good you guys are exposing him for what he’s doing. Will it help? I don’t think he’s on blogger.com where one can just cry to the host provider and get his blog deleted. This is probably the biggest problem for all of us.

  15. Darren Rowse says:

    Actually i didnt even see the resemblence to my blog – i guess the three boxes up the top is similar as is the topic….maybe i’m just getting use to it :-)

  16. Andy Merrett says:

    Am I missing something here? The two barely look the same. The rogue site design is not good.

  17. Darren, you should contact advertisers whose ads the thief is using. I think he is using Google Adsense so you should contact them and tell that contact is stolen thus TOS is violated.

    Speaking of stealing content, Jason Calcanis stolen comic strip from me – removed copyright message and placed on his own server and didn’t provide any link, compare:

    http://www.weblogsinc.com/common/images/4463693158292347.GIF?0.8112354527175495

    and

    http://comicstripblog.com/wp-content/comicstrip49.gif

    … so there are big thiefs like your Malaysian guy and big one like blogging magnate Calacanis….

  18. colbert says:

    darren. you should complain to the internet police and the webhosting company of the copycat blogger to stop this plagiarism.

  19. Tim Yang says:

    Here’s the best solution, do what I do:

    I ban all access from Malaysian ISPs to my blog. I used to get tonnes of trolls from Malaysia. And now I don’t have to deal with them anymore. Banning also makes it difficult for these Malaysians to get at my content.

    If anybody wants a copy of my ban file, I’d be happy to provide it.

  20. adam says:

    un-freakin’-believable!! someone “stole” a friend of mine’s content from his blog and reprinted it in a monthly e-newsletter recently. though it was “public domain,” he was (rightfully) upset that it was copied and reprinted without permission.

  21. Allan Burns says:

    It’s a shame this sort of thing goes on. Copying verbatim doesn’t do anyone any good. I do not see any problem with using content for inspiration/research.

    Tim, are all Malaysians trolls or just such a large percent that you choose to ban. Does anyone have any statistics on this, surely other asian countries would also cause similar problems.

  22. graywolf says:

    Something to be aware of I’m looking at a content creation service where you pay for the content, and only have to include a non hyperlinked by line. So you end up with something like this

    This article was written by Jane Smith
    This article was written by Silverfox

    I have to say the article quality is the same if not better than the free article sites you see, so it would be pretty easy for someone to think I copied the article and “forgot’ to put the link in.

  23. cosa says:

    i just found another 2 blog by this Jumat person, not sure whether the content is also steal from others or not since both are not AdSense-related.

  24. Darren Rowse says:

    I wouldnt ban all Malaysians. Some of my most loyal and committed readers are Malaysian. I don’t think we need to take it to a level of making sweeping statments about a whole race.

    Lets just keep our focus on Western Australians shall we?

  25. Dehumanizer says:

    Happened to me as well.

    My original:
    http://tlog.dehumanizer.com/2005/09/03/blogging-tips-9-quantity/

    The copy:
    http://newsgator-herald.blogspot.com/2005/09/blog-maniacblog-more-often.html

    It gives credit to me now (though he didn’t get the blog’s name right), after I said I’d get nasty. :) But, before, it didn’t. He also changed the cell phone’s link, and removed the warning that the article was part of a series.

    Now, for the funny part: in the guy’s site, the article above the copy of mine mentions, in very large letters, that, when copying text, you should take care to attribute it to the original author! I guess he doesn’t even read the articles he copies in full… :)

  26. Chen Tong says:

    Tim, don’t ban all Malaysian. Not all behave in such a way.

    Darren, Thanks for not banning us. :-)

    What you can do is to write to the ISP, “[email protected]” (I think, as in the whois), ask them to strip down the content. Usually they will comply to your request once they verify the facts. They will not want to get into trouble due to some copycats who use their hosting.

    If you want to contact the copycat, just add the number “6″ (for malaysia) in front of the telephone number shown above. or you can write to his email shown in whois.

    http://www.betterwhois.com/bwhois.cgi?domain=bloggertips.com&x=0&y=0

    No I don’t think anyone should copy from anywhere for his own blog, even if credit is given back to the writer. Duplication of content dilute search engine ranking. The only legitimate way to use free content is to get those articles that were submitted to free articles sites…

  27. Arnoud says:

    You can search for copies of your webpage with Copyscape:
    http://www.copyscape.com/

  28. Fin says:

    I get this too, and it really does my head in.

  29. Dehumanizer says:

    Aronoud: Copyscape didn’t detect my particular case… nice idea, but I don’t think the implementation is there, yet.

  30. daryl.. says:

    darren..maybe its newbie….take a look at the archive…he may need more exposure…i see now its all credited already….maybe he think only put source link is OK..like what you did in your “What is blog”..you just put Source at the end of the sentence…he want to follow your sample…something that looks shoddy but i think he can repair the mistake..

  31. It’s 7:15 pm Washington DC time and I just clicked over the site Darren referenced. Set, point and match. The site is down with this message posted on the site.

    “I’m very sorry….i’m just testing the template… Now i already credited the writers, i thought just put link to the original author site is enough and not against the law.. Now i have removed all the contents that not being credited with the proper way. Thanks to darren from problogger for knocking my head, make me realize the faults. For the time being, i will remove all the entry and check if i had credited the correct person. Its quite shameful if the site is still online when i am editing it. Sorry all bloggers…its not the intention, only the wrong method which i think its OK. And for Malaysians, very sorry if this thing cause bad name to all the citizens, i ask for your forgiveness for this silly mistake. Next time, i will credited following the correct way and not only the SOURCE link. For all the international bloggers, thanks for yelling and scolding..i will take that as a positive advice. I thought testing the template,also WordPress with temporary contents may not reach the international but its a shameful blow for me. To all, thanks again. To all the authors especially cred8-design, thanks for telling the correct way to credit author. Hope dont blame all Malaysians, LiewCf is example of our problogger…Thanks. Please email me at [email protected] if you have any response of this public statement.”

    Don’t know enough one way or another to know if he’s making bull feces or if he really is a newbie who fell on his sword.

  32. nortypig says:

    Duncan:
    Well its better to be talked about than not talked about so thankyou for noticing me in the crowd. I’m flattered. Although I don’t particularly care if you point anyone to steal my content as I’m not about the cash. Feel free to take any content on my site as you will, if you credit me then thanks but if you don’t I accept that I put it on the net and someone else recycled it. You don’t have to agree with me and thanks for the small flame – you sent me visitors! Yay. Tasmania? I’ve lived in many states and WA is one of them – from 80 to 82. To each his own and I respect your views.

    HART:
    As for TheNews.com.au. That is owned, DESIGNED, and operated by Jason Carter of Punk Media. He had a manually updating blog for many years that he wanted powered by wordpress to have search etc. So it was a table based non-validating site. I was contracted to rebuild that site over wordpress FOR JASON CARTER as XHTML. It would be Strict but he still wants to use target=”_blank” so it has to be Transitional for the time being. If you read the posts on Pig Work you’d have gleaned that business relationship for yourself. So that is probably a sign of your attention span or something indicative of flame chasing, I don’t know. But get this one straight – I AM NOT A THIEF!!!! That was rude, unsubstantiated and you may find yourself in a court of law with that one as it reflects not on my blog but my business name and professional practise. Cease and desist that line of comment, sir, please. Perhaps Jason Carter should email you himself to explain the contract terms.

    OK that aired its a contentious issue and I’m not time-rich enough to particularly argue it. I see the web as about US and WE but copyright and so forth is about ME and MY. Freeware vs Commercial. I read problogger religiously and personally think Darren is a top guy with some great stuff and I’m sorry that he’s been ripped, as I have, but we have to accept that we all have different opinions and walk away without being insulting or demonising people for location, race or whatever. The fact is I didn’t steal TheNews.com.au – its a rebuild of the original for the original owner!

    Feel free to rip anything I write or say on my blog as well and call it your own. That’s a personal ethics thing. My point – its ethically not what I believe in but its also a reality of the world that I operate in that it happens. My real good stuff may well become a book instead Duncan.

    Have a good day all and feel free to visit Pig Work sometime.

    Darren Rowse:
    Not to mix you up with the other Darren. Sorry for hijacking your comments here but I have my professional business identity to defend regarding Theft of Content on TheNews.com.au

  33. nortypig says:

    I have to add that I was so distracted by the accusation of theft I inadvertently turned Duncan into Darren and if anyone is offended I apologise. I probably won’t come back to read your flames though so go for it. Cheers :)

  34. HART says:

    Wow! I’m famous for Nortypig misreading my compliments on his design ability to replicate a website into a wordpress blog. Thanks in advance for any new traffic! Glad I came back to see how many more comments were on this post, otherwise I would have missed that!

  35. nortypig says:

    My apologies to HART for misinterpreting your post in about the most opposite way possible. Sorry – I’ve also apologised on my blog.

    This unfortunately highlights the danger of flaming on other’s blogs on a personal level as under attack for being Tasmanian I immediately jumped to a wrong and defensive conclusion. I’ve also amended the content on my own blog to reflect my error of judgement.

    Further apologies to Darren Rowse for this inconvenience.

  36. colbert says:

    mr jumat has edited his blogs but did not outright say sorry yet

  37. colbert says:

    this website does a lot of cut and paste too
    ..http://www.squashi.com/

  38. Mike says:

    Webmasterworld has posts every day about copied content, and I have had it on my own sites. I don’t accept it all, but as soon as you reach some success you can be guaranteed that there will be people copying your site. However wrong it is, you have to judge if it is worth the time fighting these people versus spending the time improving your own site.

  39. Wow! What a bunch of comments … went a little off the rails there for a while!

    Firstly, to important things … Duncan: Go Pies! and as said before the Tassie thing is an Australian thing: we like-heartedly taunt people from Tasmania (Aussie humor … go figure!!!), just as I’m taunted about where I’m from: bleak city … we Aussies just love to take the piss out of each other.

    The stealing of content: To me it’s a simple matter: You write it, you copyright it on your site, you own it. Someone else wants to use it they have to ask and only then if the orginal author accepts they have to acknolwedge it. Full Stop! It shouldn’t matter if it’s the web, a book whatever … using conent without permission is just not on.

    Looking at both sites (Darren’s and ‘The Shoddy” one) I don’t see too many simarilities. Actually I quite like the little flip in the header image (bottom right).

    And it would appear that he has been taken up on his activities and taken steps to rectify it with an apology … let’s give him some lee-way and wait and see.

  40. It seems the guy from “Blogger Tips” apologized. Since I tend to believe what people say on the Internet – what? you dont’ belibe me? -, I’m supposing that this case is closed

  41. David says:

    Darren,

    Let’s look at an entry of your other blog (http://www.livingroom.org.au/photolog/).

    Trusted Reviews has a review of the Olympus µ [mju] Digital 800 (also known as the Olympus Stylus 800) and writes – ‘It may be questionable whether anyone really needs an 8MP compact, but there’s no denying that the Olympus mju 800 is an extremely good camera. Build quality, ease of use and performance are as good as ever. The Bright Capture technology makes low-light photography much easier, and the image quality in SHQ mode is superb. If you simply must have A3-size holiday snaps then it’s ideal.’

    And you call that a blog. The whole site is nothing but copy-and-paste contents from other review sites so that you can earn some Adsense dollars, and you call yourself a blogging guru teaching your followers to blog for profits.

    Shame on you.

    Have a look, people, and judge for yourself.

  42. Darren Rowse says:

    David – thanks for your comment.

    Yes that is my blog and that is how some of the post on my blog work. I’ve never hidden the fact that I use quotes from other people’s sites in some of my posts. The difference is that I give a link to the source of my quotes (never whole articles). I also put it in quotes and blockquotes – and invite people to read the rest of the article.

    in doing this I send significant traffic away from my blogs to other sites. These other sites thank me for this. In fact I get 20 or so emails per day from other sites asking me to quote them and send them traffic.

    You’ll also find that what I do is collect these quotes and put them side by side other quotes on the same cameras and thereby give my readers useful content that they wouldnt get on any other site. They see 5, 10 or even 20 or 30 links on the one page on some cameras which point to different reviews on the one camera.

    This is different to most spam blogs which automatically (mine are all manually done) just copy and paste large slabs of content onto their blogs – usually without any link.

    So the key is attribution, not using full articles, providing a useful and unique content and actually benefitting all concerned (readers, other sites etc).

    The comforting thing for me is that people at Google have written to me and talked to me about how I blog in order to learn how to teach others to do it. Not sure they’d do this with a spam blog.

    Hope that answers some of your questions.

  43. Id.Ology says:

    Freedom of speech is the true spirit of blogging not google adsense or anything else. We don’t need nobody teach us how to blog,like don’t put your blog on blogspot this kind of shady advice! I’ll write something original as I wish and feel like writing something orginal like this post, I’ll copy something interesting to me as I wish–you can see yahoo news copys the whole news from different news source like new york times etc without giving orginal links or MSN news doing the same. Stop calling me a shady bloggers because of that. I will use my blog to copy something useful to me while I’m on the internet like I copy something in my notebook while I’m in the library. The things copied maybe will be useful reference for me to write a discertation or some orginal article. It’s my personal freedom to do this as I wish. So stop crying like a filthy rich rock’n'roll stars claiming someone listening to his music on ipod without paying him. Piracy! Piracy! Don’t be too carried away! This blog business isn’t Rock’n'Roll business and you aren’t Rock’n'Roll stars. I copy your stuff because it’s useful for me to organize things useful to me and to refer to in the future or whatever reason as I wish. I’m not making any money out of it like pirate Rock’n'Roll CD. If you really don’t like being copied and need RIAA(Recording Industry Association of America) kind of copy protection, why don’t give up being a blogger and try to be a pop stars or whatever.
    My blog is my business.

  44. mattiethetravellingman says:

    David (comment no 47).

    Let’s look at an entry of your other blog (http://www.livingroom.org.au/photolog/).

    Trusted Reviews has a review of the Olympus µ [mju] Digital 800 (also known as the Olympus Stylus 800) and writes – ‘It may be questionable whether anyone really needs an 8MP compact, but there’s no denying that the Olympus mju 800 is an extremely good camera. Build quality, ease of use and performance are as good as ever. The Bright Capture technology makes low-light photography much easier, and the image quality in SHQ mode is superb. If you simply must have A3-size holiday snaps then it’s ideal.’

    And you call that a blog. The whole site is nothing but copy-and-paste contents from other review sites so that you can earn some Adsense dollars, and you call yourself a blogging guru teaching your followers to blog for profits.

    Shame on you.

    Have a look, people, and judge for yourself.
    ===========

    I’m with you David.
    Some people just know blaming other people, but they also do the same thing. Make blog with copy othet blog reviews, made thousands from adsense and at the same time make setup a blog like this Problogger and teach people “Original content is a king”. What a loser.

  45. Darren Rowse says:

    ‘mattiethetravellingman’ – thanks for the comment. My response is #48 above.

  46. Penny says:

    Oh crap. I hope that’s not what I’m doing. I just read this and was like “oh no” ’cause I have two or three things linking to other articles. I’ve written everything else myself though and use blockquotes both to highlight stuff and to obviously quote something.

    I bought your book, btw. Have read it several times and I’m always on this site.

  47. Daniel says:

    I read similar article also named ducing a Shoddy Blogger, and it was completely different. Personally, I agree with you more, because this article makes a little bit more sense for me

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Darren Rowse over at Problogger has done something he often holds back from doing, at that’s something that perhaps sometimes I do to often: he’s gone on a rant with Introducing a Shoddy Blogger and singled out Mr Jumat’s blog: Tips for Bloggers (rel=nofollow used) as stealing content. [...]

  2. [...] Introducing a Shoddy Blogger Popularity: 1% [...]

  3. [...] Blogger Darren Rowse calls out another blogger he says is using content without crediting the source: Have a look at Blogger Tips (no follow tag used) – a blog that is filled with either posts that are ‘free articles’ or other people’s content. In both types of posts there is no credit given to the original author. [...]

  4. [...] There have been continuing, long – winded discussions in many public “forums” about many levels of Blog spamming (An Excellent Post By Tris Hussey), copywrite theft (A Calling Out By Darren Rowse), how SE’s react/don’t react, automated Blog tools, automated comment spamming tools etc. etc….. [...]

  5. [...] Introducing A Shoddy Blogger seems to have brought me into a flame war with Duncan from The Blog Herald doing the banana-nana at my being Tasmanian and HART accusing me of stealing TheNews.com.au which has been discussed recently on this blog – WordPress To Power The News.com.au dated 1/9/05, Completing TheNews.com.au dated 5/9/05 and TheNews.com.au Rebuild Goes Live. [...]

  6. [...] 5. From ProBlogger Introducing a Shoddy Blogger: Blog Tips – ProBlogger [...]

  7. [...] What a wild and whacky week it’s been in the blogosphere. The laidback style of life that is professional blogging errupted this week when the issue of content theft and referencing was raised – here, here, here and here. [...]

  8. [...] Why? I already had bad experience due to my lack of knowledge in blogging when i started blogging 3 months ago. On September 9th 2005, my name was all over the prominent blogs such as Problogger and Blog Herald, i was labelled as content theft. Darren also labelled me as shoddy blogger.Please read the lesson i learnt and my tips in crediting authors in my blog here. [...]