Yes, I’m going to talk about that ugly “P” word; Plagiarism.
In a world of copy cats are you an original? You need the best website with all the right SEO because we all know how important that is for business these days, right? A good website is important; in fact it’s critical in today’s world of technology. Searching for services and business is done on-line, rarely with a phone book or a walk through town. Even more so, if you don’t have a brick and mortar building it is your storefront. If you are not tech-savvy it can be a monumental expense to hire a web-designer to help you get your business and website up and running on-line.
So what to do? Well, there are a few options.
- You hire a respectable web designer or website building company and have the job done correctly.
- You invest in a pre-made template of sorts specific to your industry. This is an excellent option as the coding, SEO and details are all pre-set for you.
- You try your hand at a building your own site.
Maybe you decide you can do this yourself. Now, what happens when you get into the real nitty-gritty of putting content on the page? Maybe you hadn’t thought that out too well. It’s a time-consuming prospect and if your web designer doesn’t know your business well, it’s really up to you to assist in giving them your content.
What happens when you want to circumvent the system which is the tedious task of compiling your own ORIGINAL TEXT on you website? Welcome to the tempting and dangerous land of copy and paste. You may think, “It’s not my original text; but who will know?”
Don’t do it!
This is a topic near and dear to my heart; I’ve had my site copied two times now (that I’m at least aware of) from individuals claiming to be creative business owners!
The first time, let’s call this case #1, was page after page of pure copy and paste, down to every bullet point and all descriptive text of my services. The site owner removed and changed everything immediately upon request after bringing the offense to their attention. They knew it was wrong and their quick compliance and apology was accepted.
The second time around, case #2, was quite eye-opening, if for no other than reason than the conflicting excuses of how my website text ended up on their site. Copying, pasting with some moderate modifying. The offender blamed their training company’s advice to visit the competition’s website. I guarantee that RESA® accredited training companies do not advise copying and pasting from the competitors’ sites, especially when they offer an option that you can have your website up and running through them. Shame on you, local competing business owner.
Words of advice
Debra Gould, the Staging Diva®, expert home stager, with a well-known and well-respected home staging business training company, addresses this matter by writing: It isn’t flattery it’s plagiarism. I love this quote from Debra Gould in her article: “As a home stager, you are in the business of creating. Please create your own website content from your own ideas or have a professional help you along. Don’t damage your reputation (or your karma) by copying other home stagers’ stuff. Once you lose your integrity, it’s pretty hard to get it back.”
Thank you, Debra, truer words were never spoken!
Article after article has been written on plagiarism from the amazing personal small business coach Karyn Greenstreet of Passion for Business. Karyn chronicles many of her own true stories of plagiarism from her site with “Are Thieves stealing your website text?”, “ Passion for stealing”, “the Plagiarism Saga Continues (sorta)” and “How do defend your site when someone plagiarized your website text”.
To repeat a question asked so many times before is: “Why in the world in what is supposed to be such a creative industry is there so much plagiarism?” In a world of copy cats are you an original? You need to be original and be yourself!