The gorgeous, pouting Chris Mitchell has found a fantastic resource for bloggers: CopyScape. It’s a search engine that enables you to see if people have ripped off your blog entries, online articles or other text.
I idly put in my Laos: Plain Of Jars article and discovered it’s been ripped off wholesale by a tour operator in Vietnam and that a single paragraph has been lifted by a tour operator based here in Bangkok. I’ve sent a polite cease-and-desist order to the latter to see what happens. This sort of thing really irritates me, not just because of the lack of courtesy of lifting my work without asking permission or providing a back link, but more that I have to waste my time arguing with them when they are irrefutably in the wrong.
I agree. I’ve spotted a few of my blog entries on commercial sites, reprinted without permission or credit, and I’ve had ongoing battles with site owners who don’t understand what “non-commercial use only” means. The money (or lack of it) doesn’t bug me; it’s the rudeness that gets my goat.