How To Stop Content Pirates Part 2
In part one I showed you how to find content thieves that are ripping off your intellectual property. This tutorial will show you what to do when you catch one of these pirates.
But first let’s take a look at website copyright rules. I’m certainly not a lawyer so please don’t consider this legal advice.
If you want to read the entire circular on website copyright law from the US Copyright Office have at it; it’s located here. If you hate reading boring legal speak as much as I do here’s what it says in summary:
Copyright protects original authorship fixed in tangible form. Copyright registration is not mandatory, but it has important benefits. Copyright violation is always illegal, but it can be difficult to prosecute offenders without copyright registration, which establishes a public record of ownership. All websites and their content are inherently copyrighted, provided they are original works. Whether you decide to complete copyright registration for your website is your choice.
What To Do When You Get Your Content Ripped Off
Step 1: Take A Deep Breath
Initially, you’re going to be pissed at seeing your content on someone else’s site without your permission and you should be But instead of lashing out (or loading your guns) follow these steps and save yourself the additional blood pressure (or arrest).
Step 2: Gather And Collect Information About The Thief
- Look for a ‘contact’ page for either an email address or phone number but don’t be surprised if you don’t find one. If that’s the case it’s fines since there are other ways to track them down.
- Find out who registered the domain name (and when) with this free tool:
- Find out which company is hosting the website with this free tool:
Using these 3 tools jot down all of the details you can including email addresses, names, locations, etc.
Step 3: If You Have An Email Address Of The Perp Send Them An Email
Keep it professional if its looks like a decent quality site who’s site owner may not have known the content was stolen or was simply ignorant of giving credit to the content’s creator. If it was in error, ask the site owner to either include an attribution link back to your site as the original source or remove it. Problem solved!
You don’t have to be as nice if it’s a flagrant rip off like the example I gave you in part 1 where its just scraped content from your site. In this case, write “notice of cease and desist” in the email title to get their attention and then demand they eliminate all of your content or face the legal consequences. If they respond with an apology and delete the content then you’re done with this perp. Although you may want to keep and eye on them for future shenanigans!
If you get no reply or find zero contact information you need to elevate your efforts a bit.
Step 4: File A DMCA Request
If you get no reply from the site owner file a formal complaint called a DMCA request to have the stolen content removed from the website. Send this request to both the hosting company and domain registrar you identified in Step 2 above. Web hosting companies take this very seriously and normally act quickly. You should also send a copy of the DMCA request to the site owner if you do have their email address. Make a note of the date of each action you take.
DMCA.com is the global leader in DMCA Copyright Infringement Takedowns. DMCA is a paid service but is well worth the $10 per month that it costs to protect your intellectual property. They will get your stolen content removed for you . It’s 100% Guaranteed – or you get your money back. To learn more and sign up please Click Here
Step 5: If All Else Fails
If you still don’t get resolution call the hosting company and speak with a representative to make sure they follow through. Reference the DMCA notice.