Internet marketing and blogging have changed over the years. Some years back, people used to write blog content less than 500 words or copy from other sites and create some spam link and used to get their articles indexed and ranked.
Well, this was as a result of low competition in those times but now the blogging is completely different. Blogging is highly competitive now-a-days and the copy-paste trick no longer stands anywhere in today’s era.
To rank a piece of content or post containing 800-1000 words is good, but if you find your content on some other websites or blogs then it really hurt as somebody has stolen your hard work. It takes so many hours and days to write a well formatted piece of content and when someone stoles it, it looks as someone has kicked on our ass :(. You will probably be finding how to protect your content from not getting stolen.
In this article, you will learn how the content of your blog gets stolen and ways you can use to protect website content from being copied. The sad truth as a blogger and content editor is that there are a group of people who constantly extract our content, publish it as their own content and do not give us credit for our hard work.
If your website runs on wordpress then you need to check WordPress content protection plugins that will ensure your content from not getting stolen. You can decide the best plugin that you are comfortable with and can learn to how to prevent website copying. You also need to check WordPress Image Protection Plugins, in order to safeguard your images from being stolen.
What is Content Theft?
As the name implies, Content Theft is an act of copying someone’s work without his consent or permission. The content theft not only applies to the text but infact, people steal images and videos too. Infact, the number of people stealing videos and images are quite high as compared to the number of people stealing the website text.
Content Marketing is a big industry and in 2019, it boasts of more than $300 billion industry.
Plagiarism is the most common content theft; copying from one’s site and pasting on another site without referencing, citing and without owner’s permission.
Why do People Steal Content?
There are various reasons due to which people become online-thieves and then they steal the content from other websites. Some people want to exploit another person’s work and want to reap the gain of someone’s work. They do not care that how much hard work that person has done in order to create his website.
Also, some people are so lazy that they do not want to do anything on their own. You need to try your best to prevent your website from being copied by such online-thieves.
However, whatever the reason may be for content theft, it does not change the fact that theft is theft. So there is no excuse for stealing someone’s work and claiming it to be yours.
How to Check if Content is Copied?
In order to find if someone has stolen your content or not, you need to take benefits of various online tools available in the market.
CopyScape is one of the most widely used plagiarism checker online tool. Just enter your post’s url and click on Go button. CopyScape will list the pages and websites where the content similar to yours is found. However, the downside of copyscape is that you have to purchase their premium account if you want to see all the results and want to use it extensively.
Many bloggers do not know that Google Alerts also help in detecting the plagiarism content. But the question is that google alerts can only send you notifications and alerts, then how it detects plagiarism?
Well, if you can setup the alerts for any of your post title or for some exact lines from your article then Google Alerts can warn you whenever someone posts the exact title or lines on his website. You just need to set up the correct alert. So, let us get started and set our google alerts.
1. Go to Google Alerts website.
2. Enter some text in the text-box. I entered a keyphrase from my article How to Find and Hire Writers for Your Blog?.
3. Now you need to tune some settings for the alert that you are going to create. You can see ‘Google Alerts’ displays few fields where it expects some input from you. The good thing is that Google by default keeps some value of these fields for you and if you are not willing to spend your time on these fields then the alerts will be setup based on the default values.
Let us see what these text fields are and what values we can set in them.
• How Often: This determines the frequency of alert that you want to receive. Choose any one value based on the fact that whether you would like to receive the plagiarism alerts immediately when google finds that copied content on web or you want alerts at most once a day or once a week.
• Sources: These are the sources on which you want your content to be verified for plagiarism. It can be News, Blogs, Videos, Books, Discussions, Finance or entire Web. I recommend you to set it ‘Automatic’ as you would like to check for plagiarism of your content on entire web. Set it to any other value only in case you require it to be.
• Language: Whether you want to detect plagiarism only for English sites or you want to check for other language websites as well. This is one of the advanced features of Google Alerts to detect the website content being copied in any language.
• Region: Whether you want to set the region to any particular country-specific or any region worldwide.
• How Many: This is the number of results that you want to see, whether you want to have only the best results in your alert or you want to have a gaze on all the results.
• Deliver To: You need to be careful in setting this as it will determine the destination of copied content results. If you have logged in with correct emailid then that email will be automatically populated in this field else you also have the option to select RSS feed.
4. After you are done by setting the entire required fields then click the button Create Alert so that you can receive the alerts whenever someone copies your content and you can come to know that your content has been copied by someone.
5. You can adjust the ‘Delivery Time’ of your alerts. I have set the delivery time to evening 4PM. You can adjust it as per your needs.
6. Similarly, you can adjust the ‘Digest’ settings. Digest is basically the frequency at which you want to receive the emails.
7. You can delete and edit the alerts, if required.
My favorite tool to check plagiarism is Grammarly. It not only helps me to check the content plagiarism but it also helps me in improving my English. It checks all the grammar mistakes for me.
So, if you are serious into blogging and content writing then you must try Grammarly. It provides you a free chrome extension too, which you can try for free and can upgrade whenever you want.
Now, when we have found our text and content on various websites, let us see what we can do now so that the content-thieves learn a lesson and we can protect our website content from being copied in future.
What I can do when someone copies my Website Content?
You might now have the question that when someone has already copied your content then what you can do now?
First of all, make a note that if someone has stolen your content and pasted on his website without your permission but has referenced you with a linkback and has clearly indicated that you are the original source then it is NOT Copyright-Infringement. You can also refer Copyright.Gov to learn more on copyright-infringement.
Now, if you see that some webmaster has copied your content without giving you any reference then there are some steps that you can incur.
Your hard work is 100% your property and no one has the right to take its advantage personally or commercially without your consent.
1. Contact him to remove your content
The first step that you should follow is just contact him and send him a polite email. You can use below email format that I generally use while sending emails to all the content thieves.
Also, please take all the screenshots of your and his articles so that you can provide them to him in the email.
This is Atul Bansal.
I can see you copied my content on your website.
My website page url: https://bloggerpng.com/lsi-keywords/
Your website copied content url: somedomain.com/abc.html
Please see attached screenshots too.
I request you to please remove all the copied text and also, add my post’s url in your article as a reference text.
This is a nice format and chances are that the webmaster will remove all your content. See the clever thing that I have made here is that I am asking him to include my article’s url in his post. We are not sure that whether he will add my url or not but if he does that then I would be getting a free dofollow link.
Ofcourse there are other legal remedies also but it is best if we can settle the matter peacefully. With this mail, 90% of webmasters will remove your copied content from their websites. And after the removal of stolen content, you can shoot one more mail asking about linkback.
If they have already given you the linkback then its fine else you can try for it by sending another email. You can refer below email format as your email marketing strategy.
Thanks for removing my content. I appreciate it. I would really admire if you could please link back to my original article.
The benefit with this approach is that you might get a dofollow link from the thief and if you are going for legal remediation then it will take time and plus, why to mess in that procedure?
You can see that we are benefitting ourselves and our website when someone is copying our content. So let people copy your content :).
But if this approach does not work for you then you can go by any of the below mentioned approaches.
2. File DMCA Copyright Complaint to Google
The major concern any website-owner has is that if someone else has copied your content then he might get few search traffic and that no website-owner wants. In order to cope with this, you can request Google to remove the copied content urls from its search results.
You can file DMCA notice with Google so that Google can review your notice and can remove the stolen data from its index. DMCA stands for Digital Millennium Copyright Act and Google treats it very seriously. It has its dedicated staff to handle such complaints, which take such complaints and handle them.
• Head over to Google’s DMCA site.
• Fill out your general details such as ‘Name’, ‘Company Name’ etc.
• In the next text areas, you need to enter some information stating that someone has copied your content. You also need to enter your article’s url along with the url where you see your copied content.
You can enter below text in Identify and describe the copyrighted work textarea.
This guy has stolen and copied my article as is from my website and has pasted on his site. Please remove his url from your search index. Thanks
• Next, you need to select the ‘Sworn checkboxes’. Write the date on which you are filing the request and write your full name as signatures. Please note that you need to enter the date as ‘MM/DD/YYYY’.
So if your country is using any other date format then also please enter the date-format which google has asked you to do and do not enter your own country’s native date format.
• Confirm that you are not robot by selecting the robot checkbox which says – “I’m not a robot”.
• Click on Submit button.
• After submitting, you will receive auto-generated email from Google confirming the receipt of your request.
• Keep checking your email and soon, you will receive the final status of your complaint.
• If you have provided the relevant information then soon, Google will de-index the stolen content from its index.
3. Check with your Local Lawyer
If you still do not want to forgive the content thief then you can proceed with any other legal things. For this, you need to check with your lawyer and the laws of your country.
How to Protect Website Content from being Copied?
• We cannot restrict anyone completely in copying our website content. But we can just take some preventive measures to minimize the theft.
• If your website is on wordpress then you need to have some plugins so that it becomes difficult for content thief to steal your data.
• Add a copyright one-liner in the footer of your website. You can check my website for this and see how I have given that information.
The usual way is Copyright © 2019 BloggerPNG.com.
• Use Google Alerts.
• Use CopyScape.
• File DMCA notice with Google.
• Contact your local police and your lawyer.
I have listed all the relevant information that will protect your website content from being copied. Let me know if someone copied your articles and what are the steps that you took to prevent website copying.