Learn to protect your money online.
If you’re a blogger you might know that the true money lies within your blog’s content. Unfortunately a lot of people want to steal your content and publish it on their own site to earn money from it themselves. If you own a WordPress blog this article might help you a lot since it is mainly targeting good plug-ins and similar that you can use to fight these content stealers. However even if you don’t have a WordPress website it might still be good to read this.
Content scrapers are everywhere!
It’s a fact that there are a massive amount of content scrapers out there today. And as technology advances we will most likely only see more of them each day since it’s becoming easier for them to steal content. However, there are also people trying to counter-attack these spammers on the web. These people are most likely search engine experts who are either working for great companies such as Google developing new search algorithms and similar, or regular people trying to defend their sites by coming up with new solutions.
When I first started blogging some years ago I barely noticed people stealing my content. I might have had one person trying to make money by stealing once every month or so, so it wasn’t really that big of a deal. But nowadays I used to get about 1-6 people trying to steal my content every time I published an article. So I decided to dig deeper in to what I could do to protect my websites content to not lose money. Here are some of the things I have done that you can do as well to prevent people from stealing your money online.
Limit your RSS feeds to excerpts only.
This is the first thing you should do if you own a website. About 90% of all content stealers are automatically copying your RSS feeds as soon as they update. They then publish that feed on their own website to make money from it. If you have a website running on the WordPress platform you can simply prevent this by limiting your RSS feeds to excerpts only.
Simply log in to your WordPress admin panel and go to Settings -> Reading. When you are there you just find where it says “For each article in a feed, show“, and then you click “summary” and save changes. Now every time you publish a post, your RSS feed will only show a short excerpt of it instead of the whole post. This will make the content stealers only get a part of your post instead of the whole post. By doing this you will not lose as much search engine results and you will not lose any direct money if they steal your excerpt.
Ping your articles fast.
You want to get your articles indexed before anyone gets the chance to steal them from you. Search engines like Google are good at knowing who published the content first and then determining who the content stealer is. However, if your article does not get spotted by the search engines fast enough (most often if you have a small website) you can ping it with tools like Pingomatic and Pingler. This will ensure that your article will be found within a few minutes and ranked in search engines in a few hours.
Include links to your own website.
Now that you have protected your RSS feed we will look a bit further in to what you can do if someone actually copies your articles manually and posts them on their own website. The best thing is to state a few times in your article that it’s actually from your website. For example I might write something like this in my article “here at www.glittergraphicsite.com we have done several studies of how you can maximize your earnings”, or “according to www.glittergraphicsite.com blogging is the best way to make money online today”. This will make the stolen article link back to you. And if the article links back to you, it will not hurt your search engine results as much since the search engines knows that you have the original article.
Tell visitors that your content is protected.
Simply having an image or text at your site will send a clear message across to many people out there that you are watching your content. As you see on my site I have an image at the top saying “DMCA protected & monitored”, this means that I am protecting my content and that I will file a DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) report against those who tries to steal it. I will talk more about DMCA reports later on in this article as it’s usually the last way you will use to protect your content. Simply write a text or find/create an image saying that content theft is not tolerated and it will be reported. You have full rights to all your content and by default it is protected by various real laws, but most people are uneducated and needs to see a warning written on your website.
Install plug-ins to fight content stealers.
If you are a WordPress user like me you will have a lot of plug-ins to choose from. However, you really just need one if you want to protect your content. This one is called “Blog Protector” and it does exactly what it says, protects your blog. Simply download it though your admin panel and install it. When it is installed you can choose to protect your website from both right-clicks (often used to copy images and text), and you also get to choose to protect your blog against people selecting text/images by dragging with the mouse or using keyboard commands, such as: ctrl+c.
When you have installed this plug-in your money is pretty much secure. Not many people will find a way past this and if they do they have way too much spare time on their hands. Also, I forgot to mention that you will also get to write a personal message that will pop up every time anyone tries to right-click on your website. This message can say something like “this content is protected and anyone found stealing it will be reported” or similar, you get the point.
Contact the website owner stealing your content.
Now, if someone steals your content even though you have it protected pretty well by now you can still contact the website owner asking him to take it down or you will report him/her. This will most likely frighten him/her and your content will be taken down pretty fast (1hour-3days). Simply look around his website for a contact form or an email. However if you do not find this, you can proceed to step 2 below.
Contact the website owners hosting company.
Most likely he/she is using a hosting company to host his website on. Now these hosting companies do not like people abusing the law, so they will do what they can to keep their servers clean from content scrapers/stealers. What you need to do is simply head over to a website that offers a Whois service (just google “Whois”). And enter the content stealers website URL where it says so.
Now you will find various information about the scrapers website, such as IP address and maybe personal information about the website owner. You will also find what name servers it is located at. These name servers may look like this “ns1.hostgator.com” and “ns2.hostgator.com”. As you can see, these name servers belong to a website named Hostgator.com, which is a hosting company. Now simply head over to that website and contact their support team and give them the info they need to find and take down the content scraping website. Be sure to tell them where the stolen article is located and from where it was stolen. Also include your email so that they can contact you if they have further questions. This may take everywhere from a few hours to a week depending on how busy they are.
File a DMCA report.
This is the final step to getting your stolen article taken down. Filing a DMCA report can be done through Google (google.com/dmca.html) and a few other websites. However, before you take this step, be sure that you have read about DMCA complaints so that you know what you are doing. Do a search on “file a DMCA report” to find more information on this. I will not be able to write down everything here so if you need to do this, then it’s up to you to find the information. It shouldn’t be that hard. After all, it’s your money that is lost if you do not take action.
Hit your content stealer where it hurts!
Most likely the one stealing your content is trying to make money from it by using AdSense ads next to the content. If you really want to piss him/her off then head over to his/hers site and click on the part of the ad that says “Ads by Google”. This will take you to a site where you can report the user for using AdSense ads on stolen content. Since AdSense is not allowed to be used on stolen content he/she might get his account on hold or banned. This will make him/her think twice before stealing again!
I hope this article was helpful to you as a blogger. Everyone is trying to make money online these days, some are doing it the right way, and others are doing it the dirty way. However, as long as you know how to protect your content you will not be affected by all the sneaky people out there.
If you have any questions about this article or if you simply want to add something to the conversation then feel free to do so! I will try to respond to all questions and help you out if you got any problems. By the way, my record for having someone taking down my stolen content is 13 minutes blank. If you beat that record I will applaud for you. Now have a great day and I hope that you will earn a lot of money in your time online.
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