Category: "Web Publishing"
I'm really interested in the whole content theft/ ownership issue. I agree that the DMVA (whatever initials) does not work - except for the content thieves or people rich enough to have a lawyer. It does nothing to help the average person publishing online. I am shutting down my account on HubPages because it keeps getting content scraped and HubPages doesn't really give a rat's butt. I can protect it on my own domains but... I was actually making money via HubPages. I've heard people talk about letting their content go as promotion and encouraging it to be stolen/ passed around. This does not work so well in the age of Google's war on duplicate content. Though, for images it is not the same issue as Googlebot only checks text content that way. Also, for some reason I feel more frustrated when my art is stolen than my photographs. The art takes longer to create, thus I have more invested in it. So I really do not want to encourage it to be taken as promotion. I am setting up an egreetings site for my ASCII art but each image has my initials with it. (The standard for the artist signing their art). People steal ASCII art a lot. I don't count it as stolen when it is distributed with my initials intact. However, I have had art taken and the initials removed. People have claimed my art as their own creation and people have sold my art for money without paying me a cent or asking permission. The way things are, there is very little you can do to protect your art, photos or text online. Sending out a note asking for it to be removed is laughable. Very few people bold enough to steal in the first place will care that the artist caught them and sent a stern/ official email. -- I wrote this in reply to a post made on Google Groups for the content curators at Scoop.it.
Not every blog or site uses the footer. I wouldn't go so far as to call it a mistake, just a wasted opportunity. In creating a site we only have so much space available. There is the space which actually shows, the important, prime space. Then there are secondary areas like pages which give us a place to add more information. However, there is one area in between having the reader find and open a new page or giving prime space to information which isn't vital (but necessary). The footer! I found a great footer and took a screen capture to show it. My own footer is not so well planned out. No showcase among footers at the bottom of my site. It is a work in progress. I don't even have all the various information which has been included in the footer at Richly Middle Class.
Just for fun... next time you are on someone's site take note of how many times they ask for your email address (newsletter sign ups, site registration, leaving comments, etc.) and then see if you can find an email address or some way to contact the site owner. (Twitter and other social media excluded because these are not direct email contact). Why does a site expect or hope people will give their email address and yet the site owner does not give out their own contact information? Not so long ago this was a reason NOT to subscribe to anything on a site. I still feel that way. How do I know a site isn't gathering my email address just to turn around and sell it? When they don't give out their own email they do not seem welcoming and they certainly don't seem to want you to contact them if they make it difficult. Can you really trust a site (blog) which does not have contact information? Especially, any site which asks (repeatedly) for your own?
I've decided to gradually pull my content off HubPages. With so many posts being no-indexed (by HubPages) it seems I could make more money hosting them myself running Adsense/ Amazon and keeping 100% of the revenue. I already have the blogs up and in need of content. In trying to write for the networks and have some active presence in their communities I have spread myself thin. You may think there is no point to ever writing for a network. But, I have liked being part of the writing networks for the community, the networking and the sharing of ideas. Also, for the writing discipline of knowing I'm sticking to a schedule and meeting goals not entirely of my own making. Being our own boss is only good when you have a fairly pushy boss. At HubPages though, the content scraping was pretty much the last straw. I found two of my posts stolen and even though I sent a DMCA it is just a joke, a waste of time. It's too easy to ignore an email which the writer can't afford to back up with legal fees. It would be nice if HubPages gave us some support with content scraping/ theft. At the very least, find a way to prevent it. But, they don't seem to be working on anything like that. In the forum they have said it is our content and our problem. However, the way I see it, it is their network and thus they should be offering some support to the writers who write and bring traffic which HubPages profits from. Anyway, I've been feeling discouraged and decided it was time for a change. How will writing networks like HubPages, Suite101, About.com and the others fare over the next few years? There have been many changes in the past ten or so years since writing networks began. Some call them content farms.