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I've just received an email from the Docstoc team, notifying me that the offending content has been removed and the user banned. I'm not sure at this point whether that means just the shiftm and shiftn accounts (which were the only ones uncovered at the time that I emailed them), or all of the accounts, but I'm in communication with them about that. Just wanted to update all of you as soon as I got word.
thanks Maddie! we really do appreiciate your hard work and swift action.
This is why I read the other thread without commenting.I knew it would be worked out quickly. You rock, Maddie! The whole team is awesome! Thanks for getting involved in this one. I was NOT looking forward to going through all of my hubs.
Great job Maddie. I had at least three of my hubs copied there.
GODBLESS YOU MADDIE, and all who helped throughout this dark period.
Thank you very much for the job well done... weeee...
Said thank you on the other thread, and I'll say it again, "Thank you to all who helped to resolve this problem!"
Thanks so much, Maddie. What an ugly morning you must have had, hope all is turning around.
Thanks Maddie, and I believe they're all gone. Last time I checked, shift4 and shift5 remained, but I don't think they had any hubs in them. Those usernames were partial to wikipedia articles!
I have a question or two
What happened and how was what happened discovered?
How can somebody do what they did and Hubpages be oblivious?
Somebody probably scripted a scraper to copy content from HubPages and other authority sites and post it on DocStoc.
Thranax discovered it, and brought it to the community's attention. As soon as I saw the thread in the forums, I contacted DocStoc to try to resolve the situation, though I actually have no legal authority in the matter, except for content that belongs to me. Luckily, they were cooperative. If they had not been, each author would have had to file DMCA complaints individually.
HubPages does check automatically for duplicates on hubs, and displays a warning on hubs for which duplicates are detected, but we cannot actually physically sit there and watch the process run, for obvious reasons. Each author is responsible for his or her own content here at HubPages, including filing DMCA complaints for copied content, as I described above. We display the warning as a courtesy.
HubPages HQ are currently working on a program that reads peoples minds sometime before they do the dirty deed, and immediately after they have the initial idea. It will send an automated email message that says "We know what you want to do, but don't do it".
If it goes well Law Enforcement agencies might buy a license to use the same system, but tweaked a little, so they can also stop more serious crimes like murder.
Funny, I'm not the computer expert and didn't know how this was done, but you seem to know everything why don't you splain it to me.
I can help ... Darkside is an alien in possession of technologies we haven't ourselves developed yet. Wait until his mommy hears he took the m,ass qausi mind conductance reader from her purse ... he will be sooooooooooo in troubles.
Thanks Maddie I had faith in you and the crew, I knew you would fix it.
Your efforts in fixing this are much appreciated!
Well, I don't think any of mine were copied, of course I didn't really do much digging. Thank you very much all the same and I appreciate your efforts.
I just asked about this on the other thread. I guess I should have read this one first.
Thank you very much for your efforts Maddie. They are greatly appreciated by me and many others.
In HPs defense ... I ran both copyscape and a google search on my hubs and only found one that had been copied. However, when I went to Docstoc I found more ...
The question has been asked ... how could Hubpages let this go on for so long?
Answer: The activity basically started around the 9th of October (at least that's when the thieving from Hubpages started - according to the articles I check through)
As such, the articles on Docstoc were just starting to hit Google, which is how we noticed them. Two days earlier and we wouldn't have found a shred of proof - I'd even go as far as one day earlier.
So to speak ... we got lucky and dodged this bullet just as it left the chamber, and I have no doubt Hubpages would have discovered it today as more hit Google.
So, what should have Hubpages done differently?
Well ... they could have borrowed my time machine, went a week into the future, found the hubs and then returned.
As Maddie and the staff don't trust my time machine (because I built it) you can fault them for a lack of bravery in my technical expertise, but you can't fault them for not knowing something occurred prior to a point where it could have been recognized.
Again ... no internet search two days ago would have shown these documents as being stolen as Google had not indexed them yet. As such, there was no way for Hubpages to know.
What everyone needs to know is that this guy didn;t steal 80,000 articles in eight months time ... he did it in four days ... 20,000 articles per day. I looked at his statistics and I know this to be true. I also saw how he created a new identity each day and managed to have 20,000 articles in each username.
My guess is he was using each new name to steal from somewhere else, but I didn't get that deep into things. I filed the DCMA and waited for Maddie and the staff to respond to what happened ... which they did, in under 24 hours.
Docstoc then proceeded to remove the accounts quickly, ending the fiasco - though some will be indexed in Google unless they take them out of the index over this (I filed a DCMA with them too).
Point is ... Sometimes we think the staff here are god and goddesses (which they are) but we then expect them to do things that even a god or goddess couldn't do.
Considering this incident happened on a Sunday evening and the staff had it all cinched up by Monday morning, I think that's an excellent response time.
Let's face it ... the staff here isn't baking pizzas ... their managing a very large website, and as someone who has managed a much smaller one, I can tell you that it's a lot of work and these guys are worth every penny they earn from this site ... and much more.
Let's all take a deep breath, exhale, and be perfectly hoenst why we are angry and who we are truly angry with.
We are angry because someone dared to profit from all of our hard work, and the person we are angry with is the little twirp who did it.
As such, let Maddie off the rope ... she did an excellent job
And if I were running a sizeable website today Paul would hate me, as I would double whatever he was paying to have her on my staff ... that's a fact!
Thanks from me too, Maddie.
I did send a report last night on the few I did discover during a quick check, and today Docstoc sent me an e.mail saying those had been removed, and offending party's account was closed. I particularly appreciated their quick response, in view of the fact that I'm just one individual (rather than someone representing thousands). "Points for them" (Docstoc), as far as I'm concerned.
I don't understand why people should be mad at Maddie. Plagiarism is hard to catch on the web and there are thousands of us hubbers and thousand upon thousands of hubs!
I'm not mad, I just couldn't understand what or how it happened, I mean on a large scale as it apparently did.
The guy who did this automated the process some how. That's the only way he could sign up for an account on the 10th and have 20000 docs submitted the same day. Too bad this person didn;t use his talent elsewehere where it could have been more productive.
And I wasn't yelling at you Texan, I was just trying to explain to everyone that Maddie couldn't have reacted any sooner and that when she did, she did so immediately.
I know I came off sounding a bit gruff, but I've been that lonely little web person when the poop hits the fan, and it's the worst feeling in the world when you know you couldn't have done anything different. I think some of us heard that frustration from Maddie, and I'd like to get this girl back on a good kilter and remind her that we still all appreciate everything she does.
Well, it's a good thing you found out about it Yoshi. It is amazing that there is a software that can steal 20,000 hubs a day and post it as someone else. Very, very disturbing.
For the record ... my role in this was extremely small. I saw the message posted in the forums and conducted my own research to see how deep the rabbit hole went and then notified Docstoc and Google how it was being done.
As others had already notified them, I did nothing more than make our complaint more noticable. As such, I accept no credit ... just glad it's all been taken care of.
They're there too, actually they're everywhere I've looked...welcome to the web
Darkside - I agree, I was just out there and I think they are the same website as DocStoc - folks check out this website!! Even the titles have dashes like Hub Pages
The difference, I believe, is that docstoc offers revenue sharing and Scribd does not. Although I'm sure there are some hubs on Scribd as well ...
Scribd suggests that you upload your original work into their "copyright management system". They will then check every new article that's uploaded to the site, to make sure it's not contravening your copyright.
I read the terms and conditions but am still not quite sure what it means.
Thanks Maddie and the Hub crew for there valiant effort!!
Maddie, I looked, all 19 accounts are deleted!!! Apparently my alert and help was successful ^_^
Thank you Maddie for all of your work in this... and I'm sure there will be more work in the future on these kinds of issues. Making money online is like being a sheriff in the old wild west.
Today my views went up by 20, I wonder if it was that guy getting deleted.
My "top channels" report returned to what it had been for ages (after looking completely out of whack in recent days). My earnings look a little more like they had been looking, as well.
DocStoc seemed pretty professional to me because they deleted my plagiarized hub within hours. All I had to do was report it to their website.
But how did he possible think for a moment that he would get away with it?
Thanks Maddie and everyone else who caught it...
One good thing came from this calamity. There should be no doubt that Google does, in fact, index duplicate content. So everyone here now knows they can publish their own work on multiple article directories.
It raises another question in my mind, though. Several people posted that the rise of the duplicate article damaged the performance of the original. So, while it does indicate that duplicate content gets indexed, it also suggests that only one of the two (or several) duplicates gets ranked.
If posting something a second time means the original tanks, how are you better off?
I didn't notice any drop off in traffic to any of my 5 hubs I found on docstoc and if you read some of Whitney's posts she would tell you the same. The original will remain ranked and the others, if done properly, will be indexed and give you a backlink. That backlink makes you better off. This is only true if you are duplicating your own content on sites where you will not be gaining any benefit from adsense, directories where you will not give out your publisher id#.
I think that's generally the case for an established hub that is already ranking well. The risks are probably higher for a newer hub, simply because the search engine may have a harder time determining which was the original. Regardless, I think it's worth the effort to go after plagiarizers simply on principle.
Thanks Maddie! The work that you and the Team does is invaluable. Again, thank you!
Maddie and the staff don't trust my time machine (because I built it) you can fault them for a lack of bravery in my technical expertise, but you can't fault them for not knowing something occurred prior to a point where it could have been recognized.
Yoshi - did you use the good duct tape, or that crappy stuff from the dollar store? The devil is in the details you know.
*sigh* if you really must know the sordid truth ...
Paul was preparing to step inside the time machine, but a bolt fell out and some smoke wafted through the air and he grew all concerned from the safety of his staff.
Personally, I think he's still mad about that 'Ultimate hair dryer' I made for him last Christmas.
Yes ... it did burn a bit of his hair off, but I have learned from that failure, and model 2.0 is now ready for testing ... all because of Paul's misfortunate bravery.
So, anyone want to try out the new version? It puts out 50,000 watts.
p.s. I poke at Paul sometimes, but only in jest and never to insult, indemnify, or make him feel bad about himself ... and the farce of the joke is always on me.
Thanks Maddie and the HP Team for the quick response.
Oh and thanks to Tharanx for starting the thread and for keeping it going. Thanks to the hubbers who provided tips on how to file DMCAs and the URL for the Adsense DMCA complaint.
Also received an email saying all my stolen hubs have been removed. That was quick work.
Thanks to everyone who helped this problem to be solved. I couldn't fnd any of my hubs on the Docstoc site based on a random search on 12 of my articles, but my traffic had been down for a few days, yet seems to have picked up again today, so maybe there were some of my articles copied on to the site in question.
Thanks Thranax, Sunforged, Yoshi and Maddie and all the individual hubbers who filed their individual complaints. We really all pulled together on this one. Good job!
BTW, I got my email notification too that mine had been handled. I checked and they were all gone.
Thanks Pauldeeds , Maddie and hubbers for the brilliant action.
I hope this massive attack on hubpages would have made all of you think of new ways to stop such things in future.
Wow, ever since that site went down, I am getting about 70 more pageviews then I have been the last 4-5 days, and I didn't make a new Hub, go promote it, or anything!
Me, too! Wonder if it's a coincidence? Maybe it is just because it's Monday. Although, over the weekend (with the stolen hub debacle) I had one of my worst traffic time periods ever, it was comparable to back in June and July when I only had a few hubs!
I am getting TONS of red arrows now (this morning there were tons of blue arrows) and one of my hubs jumped up 35 views, back to it's normal daily views of 75ish. My total overall views are back to their normal range (and up 200 daily views from where they were this weekend)
Either way, glad our traffic is improving (no matter the reason!)
I knew HP had it under control!! Thank you I also recieved an e-mail telling me the same thing.
And yeah, I'm getting some more traffic now, too!
Thanks Maddie and HubPages for taking action on this and getting it resolved. Also, thanks thranax for the sharp eyes and detective work.
Maddie and all the others involved in solving this problem. A big thanks from me for all your efforts. You acted so quickly and resolved this issue so fast that I was still tring to fill out complaint forms befor I realised it had all been resolved. You are all the best people here on Hubpages and the way everyone got stuck in helping others out makes me feel all warm inside. Thranax, Sunforged and everyone I thank you so much. Maddie you are one top class chick.
Very big THANK YOU's to Maggie, Thranax and Sunforged for your hard work and dedication to HP!
My traffic has also gone back up to pre docstoc levels - cool
I'm a bit behind on all of this, so a belated thank you
I wanted to thank everyone for keeping up with these threads and working so hard to resolve this issue that is very personal to every hubber on HP. Bravo! Ovations for all your hard work.
That user has made new profile
And added atleast 3000 docs as of now.
Thanks a lot Maddie for this update.
Now I am able to view my hub in the cache form only. Here is the link of my copied hub:
http://184.108.40.206/search?q=cache:P4 … &gl=in
Here is my original one:
http://hubpages.com/hub/how-to-build-an … r-for-sale
This problem will Not go away until it is dealt with properly.
Part of that process calls for Docstoc identifying the parties responsible for this and actually shutting them down; instead of only doing enough to protect the potential banning of their own site.
They have the tools and ability to do this; but have allowed the latitude within their site, for this to continue.
As I have said earlier: This is far more legally than copyright infringement here. (I think my suggestions have been seen to be an attack on HP by some)
However if Docstoc is Not Forced to Nuke this person(s) immediately, they won't and the problem Will grow via downloads and/or secondary site placements of our work.
That user has made new profile
Of course they do!!!! They are intent on achieving their goal.
Shinujohn... Thank you for this. Time to Finish the Job.
For the first time ever at hubpages, I have been feeling depressed because of this issue.
DocStock needs to at least implement some sort of flow control - where it is impossible to upload content at that rate.
This would be the simplest means, until a proper system of verification/uploading can be put in place.
The management over there are clearly aware of the problem now, and I'd be surprised if they aren't working on this problem now.
And in the meantime, I'm sure they would immediately delete this user if they were advised of his activities. (but if they had any sort of monitoring in place, they should already know about it)
But DocStoc must also be worried about loosing their own site and I think they must be afraid of getting into legal matters.
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