Removing Copied Articles - Useful Information

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  1. Suzanne Day profile image92
    Suzanne Dayposted 8 years ago

    Hi everyone, I have recently begun working on checking and removing copied content from my hubs on the web. I am doing a rather in depth analysis, so thought I'd share what I am doing with you, so you can try it too, if you want to.

    I have a few steps to find the stolen content:

    1. Use Copyscape. Pay for premium search as needed at 5c per search (if you run out of free monthly searches). Copyscape finds the main copies.

    2. Copy the title of your hub and paste it into Google search like this: "my-hub-title-here". You will see lots of your links etc (CAREFUL NOT TO GET RID OF THESE), but you will also see some unusual copied items.

    3. Copy 3 short but uniquely written paragraphs from your hub (without " " unless you want to) into Google search, one at a time. You will see a number of places where they are copied, whether as sentences or whole paragraphs.

    After identifying the problem copies, you'll find there are lots of different types. Here is what I did with them:

    1. You see the full article copied on a website somewhere. File with a DMCA from Google at … 4905?hl=en . This takes about 3 weeks and you can monitor it in Webmaster tools. If you are signed up to Webmaster tools and logged in, Google will list all of your requests on a special page that you can bookmark and monitor.

    2. You see that your paragraphs have been copied on other sites, but when you click the link, there is no sign of the article. This is due to two reasons. The first one is that the website hides your articles behind a login or wall or shop interface. The second one is that they have added it to the source code of their page. Check the source code first (right click on page, "View Page Source" and Ctrl+F to find and search for some words to locate your content). If it is not in the source code, then it is hidden somewhere on the website.

    You can still report these sites to Google by filing a DMCA. Simply inform Google of the offending URL, your original URL and also what the website does (eg it shows my copied article in Google search but on the website there is nothing). Tell Google the exact words you typed in to get the exact search result for the offending URL. They won't mind.

    3. You'll find spun articles with a sentence or two of your hub, mixed in with other people's sentences too. This kind of article doesn't make any sense in proper English. It is made by software. The best way to deal with this is check if it is a Wordpress site. If it is, report it for spam here:

    If it isn't a wordpress site, you will need to report it elsewhere. I am still working on where exactly to do this.

    All of this takes a little time, but so far for half my articles, it has taken about 2 hours. With practice, it will be faster and easier. I feel Copyscape doesn't find everything, but it does find some things that you might overlook in the Google searches.

    I plan to implement this search every month, while tracking how many copies are found in a spreadsheet and then comparing results over a few months. From what I have seen so far, there are some articles who really seem to attract the copiers and others are left alone for some reason.

    It sounds like lots of work, but if you are serious about building a long term income on here, doing this checking is really essential to keep your traffic flowing. Remember, all you have to do is write the hub then perform this maintenance + any HP maintenance to maintain income! A small price to pay when you get a lot of hubs and money.

    Any ideas or discussion on this subject (especially by knowledgeable hubbers) would be much appreciated!

    1. Suzanne Day profile image92
      Suzanne Dayposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      PS - You will find that Hubpages comes up a lot in these searches. Do not worry. Hubpages has an active program which prevents duplicate content from being published. So you can ignore all links from Hubpages in these searches. Do not report Hubpages!

    2. Marisa Wright profile image90
      Marisa Wrightposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      Be aware - reporting to Google only takes the site out of Google search results.  It does not get the stolen content removed (unless it's on Blogger).   

      If you really want to stop the thieves, there are two more effective steps:

      You can report the site to its hosting company.   If the site is hosted on a site like Weebly, Wix, etc, then there will be a link on the site somewhere.  If it's not, you can look up  Most hosting companies have an official DMCA form - the easiest way to find it is to Google (e.g. "GoDaddy DMCA").  If they feel the complaint is justified, they'll most likely close the site down.

      However, it's quite likely the site owner will simply move the site to a new host.  To prevent that, check if the site is showing Adsense ads.  If it is, report to Google but select "A Google Ad" in the options, then on the next screen "somewhere else", then select "I have found content that may violate my copyright".   This could result in the thief losing his Adsense account.  If the thief can't make money any more, it's not going to be worth his while keeping the site going.

      If you think about it, it makes sense to report to Adsense first, and give Google time to react to that, before reporting to the host. 

      One other point:  if you're using Copyscape, which I think is a sensible idea, then there's no need to Google the title of your Hub, too, because that's one of the things that Copyscape checks.

      1. Suzanne Day profile image92
        Suzanne Dayposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        Hi Marisa,

        Thanks for the info, I will definitely look into doing this. Really appreciated.

        Regarding the searching for titles, I found the ebooks that way, and they weren't showing in Copyscape, so I might keep using that one.

    3. cmoneyspinner1tf profile image83
      cmoneyspinner1tfposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      I'm sorry to hear about your difficulties mam.  It's hard to get your stuff out there on the Internet and ranking to where people can actually find it.  But you know it's out there and you know it's real good when somebody wants to copy it and take credit for it.  It's very uncomplimentary and certainly not flattering.  As of today, I don't have that problem. I hope to never have that problem.  But if I do, I now know what to do!!  Thanks for posting.

  2. Suzanne Day profile image92
    Suzanne Dayposted 8 years ago

    I just found an e-book with my copied content, hidden behind a payment gateway and with a "free" version that tries to download malware and keylogging software to my computer. Needless to say, this will be reported to Google as a suspicious website! Glad to say I haven't found many of these in my search.

  3. Millionaire Tips profile image92
    Millionaire Tipsposted 8 years ago

    This is all good advice. Thank you Suzanne.

  4. Suzanne Day profile image92
    Suzanne Dayposted 8 years ago

    Firstly, I’d like to say that I probably should have written a hub about this, but it’s not something I love writing about for 2000 words! Plus it’s probably a better location for it here.

    I finished doing all my hubs and found out a few things.
    Firstly, the spun articles etc which only had a few sentences of mine I didn’t worry about too much. Websites which had copied a whole paragraph or more got reported.

    For those who think the search for the hub title in “” might not be valuable, that’s how I found the ebook site mentioned above. It had a number of my (uniquely worded) titles on it, hence I knew it was copying of some sort.

    During this process, I got really quick at doing it, with multiple tabs open in my browser and scanning info quickly to discount Hubpages links. At the end I could do it in 2 minutes per hub and reporting took 1 minute (I bookmarked the reporting areas). Just a little boring, that’s all.

    Two websites picked up during this search concerned me greatly. They had copied nearly every hub I had and were hidden behind some sort of masked entry point which hid the exact copied article, while containing my text somewhere on their site. These two websites are:

    www.slideshare dot net

    http://ics21 dot com

    I have reported them both to Google, with examples. Let’s hope they get taken down shortly.

    Setting a best practice routine for myself, I’d be inclined to use Copyscape (which picked up copies more than a week old but no earlier) once every month. I’d do the in depth thingy as described above every 3-6 months as it does take a bit of time, but finds all the extra crap.

    Out of 48 hubs, I filed 10 DMCA notices. However, please note that about 15 of my hubs have been up for 3 years and I have never checked any of them until now.

    During this journey, I found that there are lots and lots of really useful websites promoting my stuff, which was very encouraging. The process will be even easier over time, and I like the idea of being able to pick up traffic sucker pirates regularly and restore my text to where it should be on the web.

    Feel free to add any advice or suggestions!


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