Pulling up Weeds
Hey, guys! I wanted to take some time to touch on copyright/plagiarism issues. Regrettably, it's something we run into often on NewsBoiler, simply because so many different sites at different stages are passing through.
To draw on recent events, some of you are aware that Game Informer is pursuing those sites that have posted their content. This renders links to those posts on N4G null, and those that we are aware of are have been pulled. In the future, submissions with content culled from Game Informer (bulleted, scanned, summarized or otherwise in violation of copyright) will be failed on sight.
If you have questions or concerns about other publications being submitted to N4G or other NewsBoiler sites, we have clearly outlined means for pursuing copyright complaints in our TOU. http://n4g.com/site/termsof... When these complaints are received we pursue them aggressively (as sites that have been blocked from NewsBoiler may grumpily attest).
N4G isn't an arbiter in discussions between content owners and content thieves, but we remove plagiarized content aggressively, and curate sources available for use on NewsBoiler accordingly. If "content curation" sounds a little fuzzy to you, that covers sites that scrape content as well as a startup blog type that is copy/pasting work heavily to boost their content. Weeding those out is beneficial for the N4G readership. N4G is news for gamers first, that we have a passionate and focused community can definitely benefit gaming sites, but that's not our objective.
That covers most of what we act on, and in the hopes of improving the content quality in our corner of the net I'm going to drop some knowledge:
Have you heard of the Copyright Act?
If you violate copyright law, you can be prosecuted. It doesn't need a copyright symbol, if you reproduce someone's IP without permission, it's covered. The next time you pull a photograph or a video you did not create, think of this.
You may have heard of fair use, and its exemptions, but most of the time things do not fall under fair use. Fair use requires work. If it's copied, it's not fair use. If the bulk of your work is not original (in ideas or text), it's not fair use. Furthermore, "If you are creating a work that competes with the original in its own market, and may do the original author economic harm," it's not fair use. ( http://plagiarism.org/ask-t...
Plagiarism.org has good info on the common types of plagiarism we encounter almost daily here on NewsBoiler:
Too often we see #2 - the "CTRL C" which "Contains significant portions of text from a single source without alterations". This is easily one of the most frequent complaints we get from content owners where the plagiarizing writer does not understand that what they have done is wrong.
#1, a Clone (the whole thing copy pasted) occurs more often than you'd think with text, and more often than you'd think was possible with other media.
In conclusion, eat your vegetables.