Plagiarism on the Internet is a bruised cloud hovering on the horizon for many Web site owners. You may have been a victim. After spending hours creating, polishing and fine tuning your site’s content, the brutal plagiarism storm hits. You discover that someone has lifted that content and published it on the Internet as though it were their own. What can one do to prepare for and ultimately defuse the storm?
5 Strategies to Defend Against and Fight Plagiarism
How does one defend against and fight plagiarism? The following strategies will help in preparing for and confronting plagiarism storms.
- Fortify – Build a defense by legally fortifying before the storm hits. Have your work officially copyrighted by the U.S. Government Copyright Office. Download form TX and submit the basic registration fee of $45.00. This will ensure that you have the legal fortification in the event you discover your work has been plagiarized.
- Inhibit – Clearly state on your website that your work has been legally copyrighted by the U.S. Government to inhibit word scrapers. This will act like a sign on a house warning thieves that it is protected by a security alarm.
- Guard – Strengthen your defense guard by subscribing to a service that will notify you when someone copies the content of one or more web pages such as Copyscape at http://www.copyscape.com. This service will be your security alarm alerting you that work has been stolen. The company offers free and subscription based services.
Have A Plan – Devise a plan to address the offender when you discover that your content has been lifted. Effective plans include the following:
- Contact the offending site by using the site’s contact information and ask politely for the removal of the copyright material.
- If there is no response, contact the web hosting company.
- If there is no response, send a formal “Cease and Desist” letter by registered mail to the offending website owner or company. Examples of Cease and Desist letters may be found throughout the Internet.
- If there is still no response from the offending website owner, you may contact the various search engines to report the copyright infringement. For example, see Google’s policy on responding to alleged copyright infringement, Digital Millennium Copyright Act, at http://www.google.com/dmca.html.
- Take Action – Follow through with your action plan and keep records. If you have difficulty obtaining the offending party’s contact information or web hosting company, investigate a whois database such as CentralOps.net.
A passionate defense against plagiarism is the first step to fight against copyright infringement. A practical predetermined plan of action is a proven and effective solution to combat the storm of plagiarism when it strikes.