Theft, Links, and Spam

WoW Insider has a link round-up post that includes our “Daily Quests.” So far, we have received pingbacks from four other sites that have stolen their content and reposted it word-for-word, including the opening words, “We here at WoW Insider…” Plus ads, of course. You don’t get to see those pingbacks, because I mark them as spam comments, but it strikes me that stealing posts with lots of links is the best thing for one of those sites. You get the stolen content to help your Google hits, then any site that leaves those pingbacks is giving you free links that further help your Google ranks.

: Zubon

5 thoughts on “Theft, Links, and Spam”

  1. Yeah, and those spambots for gambling sites are getting smaarter. On one hand it is flattering, but the bad far outweighs the good.

    I like to think that our readers, commentors, and contributors keep this site very “clean.” IMHO, it is a much better place on the scary ‘net for it.

  2. Yep, it’s a whole new industry. I’ve had it with both my blogs, Trembling Hand and Ockham’s Beard.

    And I even saw it when I used to work on a science magazine called Cosmos. We’d have sites taking entire news stories – or even worse, entire online features – and slapping them on their site, brute copy/paste. I think it might have even been the work of a bot.

    We investigated the possibility of legal action, but we were informed that it was basically fruitless as a conviction of copyright infringement would be nearly impossible, and the damages would probably not be paid anyway – that’s assuming we could find the fiends.

    But hey, it’s the price of having a open medium such as the web, I guess…

  3. I hate them. Maybe I shouldn’t, I don’t know and I don’t care — I just hate them. Web 2.0 or not, it’s vile to steal work even if somehow there are vague linkages back to the original.

    It’s still underhanded and it’s still theft. So there.

  4. Meta fun: this post was linked (but not entirely re-posted) by a site about increasing site traffic via pingbacks. Maybe they have a Google alert on “pingback” and post anything with the term.

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