In classic the cobbler’s children go unshod fashion, I do a horrible job of monetizing the site (but I have made some progress on that front) and have even fallen behind on the sort of thing I normally do religiously, submitting for expense reimbursements (still haven’t sent receipts off to my publisher for what they’d cover of my UK trip, the one in which I became a volcano refugee).
Another thing I have too often been slow to address is people stealing my work. The last time I found I had a site scraper (meaning someone who rips off entire posts, no permission, and often no atttribution) it took me over half a year to get around to it, and readers were enormously helpful in getting the offender to cease.
This time, I learned of two in a day, one via Barry Ritholtz, the other quite by random (a Google search). So I figured I needed to take action faster.
My experience last time was readers were all over this as soon as I asked, which was very gratifying, but in an uncoordinated fashioin, which meant there was a lot of duplicated effort (and yes, in theory I could deal with this, but it takes time from posting, which I see as much greater value added).
The key bit is not finding out who the owner of the URL of the offending site is, although that is progress. Even if the operator of the site has registered it in his own name, and whoever the official admin contact is should get a nastygram, one can assume they know they are up to no good and are not likely to desist. The critical party is an admin contact at the webhost. If it is a commercial webhost, they do NOT like getting nastygrams, and they typically shut sites down first and ask questions later.
The sites in question are:
HedgeHogs. Here is an example: http://www.hedgehogs.net/pg/newsfeeds/hhwebadmin/item/6339370/guest-post-a-recession-to-remember-lessons-from-the-us-19371938 (this is the one Barry found)./ Here is it on NC.
The process I suggest is:
1. If you are game for this mission, I really appreciate the help. Check comments first and see what progress has been made.
2. If you want to track down either site, I’d clearly be delighted, please proceed and let everyone know what you find in comments (the last time, some readers did an impressive amount of forensics. A bit scary to see what you can learn about someone from the Web).
3. Another way to help is to prepare the cease and desist letters for me to send off. There are various versions on the Internet. If somone wants to do that, please volunteer yourself in comments and provide your real e-mail address (not in the message body, but in the address line) so I can ping you (I’d normally do this part myself, but I am using an antique, faithful but very sluggish Mac right now and won’t get my tricked out MacBook Air with hopefully my recovered data on it till Friday at best, so even easy stuff is taking longer than it ought to).
Thanks a lot!