Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Plagiarism Rears Its Ugly Head…Again

But this time it didn’t happen to me.

As I’ve heard it said, "If it happens to one of us, it happens to all of us." To any writer, no truer statement can be made about the crime of plagiarism. Fellow writer, Greta Igl blogs about yet another recent incident. A friend of hers was shocked to find one of her poems published under a Facebook pal's name. From where do these monsters crawl out of? Do any of you also worry that one day we won't be able to publish anything online again for fear our words will be stolen?

Get over to Greta's site, For Write or Wrong and show her we writers stick together and won't tolerate such behavior.

Greta Igl’s For Write or Wrong: Stop! Thief!

Let’s give that Facebook bastard a piece of our minds.


BTW, if you missed reading about my terrible case of plagiarism, I’ve provided links:

A Rage of Angel: I’ve Been Plagiarized and I’m Not Alone

A Rage of Angel: Plagiarized…Three Days Later


  1. Angel, that is the very reason I don't do much Ezine publishing. You could say I have a phobia of being plagiarized. What scares me is that if somone wanted to really take the time and lift an idea of yours, they could change it subtley, not word for word, and just cherry pick your ideas. I feel a little bit safer when standing behind an actual printed document, which is why I mostly go the anthology route.

  2. Angel,
    Commented...utterly disgusted.
    But thanks, again, for bringing another scumbag to our attention.

  3. a very sad state of affairs.. we need to continue to out those that do these dastardly deeds and show the world there is no tolerance for this crap..

  4. Thanks Angel - and Greta. I found the offender's name quite easily on fb -- the vic outed him there. But the link she provided as proof shows a different poem than what is cut and pasted, so I'm afraid he's moved the evidence. I'm mucking around... I'll ask if I can share her link. Peace, Linda

  5. Thanks for the post about this, Angel! I'm going over to Greta's site now.

  6. Stealing writers' works is kind of like kicking a wasps’ nest—they tend to travel in angry hoards.

  7. Angel, appreciate the traffic you sent over. This is SUCH an important issue to us writers. I read your posts on your experience and I'm so sorry for what you went through. It sucks that hard working writers have a tough time catching breaks, but plagiarizing jerks take credit for our sweat and tears.

  8. I don't get around much - I wonder if anyone has stolen from me...

  9. Wento over there yesterday. Good job again, Angel. Surely, people know what they have written and not written. That was some lame excuse he used.

    Regards, David.

  10. Angel, it's me, the plagiarist's victim. I so so so appreciate the support from all the posts here by wonderful writers and those on Greta's site. Today I have found yet a SIXTH place where he published the barely changed poem. Six sites with the same poem, and all of them thinking it's not only his but unpublished to boot. Unbelievable. He's been able to get away with this easily because we're trusting each other's honesty. As we should be in an ideal world. I wish I could say online publishing is risky, but plagiarism has been going on for centuries.
    I emailed my original poem and my (thankfully!) saved email chain with him (asking for advice on the poem, foolishly) to this 6th place. We'll see what the editor says. The other five have been gratifyingly appalled and have removed the poem and some have removed all his work.
    So I'm chipping away at him, thinking about how to not get in deep hot water with libel or slander. Any advice is MUCH appreciated. Thanks, everyone.

  11. I wonder....is it the same guy as before?

  12. JB--

    It's no surprise that those who plagiarize also disregard submission guidelines about simultaneous submissions or previously published work (especially when that work doesn't belong to them anyway).

    You are definitely going about it the right way: googling your work and looking for any stolen passages. Of course, a lawyer is probably the best source for any libel/slander issues, but I don't think there's anything wrong with confronting the suspected person and asking them to defend themselves regarding questionable acts (i.e. how original work you created found its way into work they submitted).

    A gave the person who plagiarized my work an e-mail warning of my "outing" his actions and gave him the opportunity to respond. The response from him never came (he also removed his website and dropped off the face of the earth). After researching further, too many instances turned up, and I decided to publish in a public blog, as the crime itself happened publicly.

    Anyway, you've done right in my book. Protect your work.

    What can be done to help prevent plagiarism? My initial answer is there's really nothing to prevent a thief from taking our stuff if they really want it.

    I'll be giving this some further thought, and update a post accordingly in the very near future.

    I'm really sorry that any writer has to worry about or experience such a soul-hurting crime.


    Thanks for your invaluable support.


  13. Appalling, sick, and twisted.

    There are always the few that will steal our words, just as there are others that will steal our vehicles or jewelry. The difference is that you have to defend yourself when you've found the perpetrator. The best self defense is what you and this other lady have done - go public with it and don't hide it away. It's the best form of karate one can do on the net.

  14. Angel, thank you for sticking up for JB. We aren't familiar with each other, but this is a bold thing for you to champion.

  15. Oh no! Not again! Well done for continuing to fight this. Where do these idiots and thieves crawl out from indeed?

  16. Angel,
    If you’ve fallen(from the net)—you’re probably burning now after all the evil you’ve spun in the last year. But hell, I've enjoyed it and miss reading your stuff. Know that your return would be welcomed, with scythes staffed—

    screw the plagerizers...they'll have their dues. Karma always rules.

  17. off topic, but hope you are okay - it's awfully quiet over here :)