Website plagiarism increases


Website plagiarism or the illegal copying of website content is on the increase. This at least is the conclusion of Cornish WebServices. Our check for websites infringing our copyright (on 22nd May 2009) showed no less than 21 different websites with substantial parts of their webpages copied directly from the Cornish WebServices website.

Just under half of these were UK companies and included digital marketing companies in Kent.  There were a couple of businesses based in India, one in Singapore and several in the US which had multiple pages copied from the Cornish WebServices website. One particular website in the US has every single page containing copy lifted almost word for word from the website.

Dealing with UK website plagiarism is easiest, and within seven days of emailing the UK website owners almost all duplicate copy has been removed.  In only one instance was it necessary to approach the hosting company to remove the website. All other website owners responded quickly to the request to change content or take down the pages.

Dealing with US websites is much harder, mainly because of the difficulty of tracking down the owners. There are many US based websites around with no valid contact details, and often no working email address. After 10 days we have only managed to get plagiarised copy removed from 50% of US or .com websites.

The following steps work well in dealing with plagiarised website copy.

1)      Contact website owner and inform them of the problem. Ask for all copied information to be removed within 3 days. This will work for most cases.

2)       If no response, then contact the hosting company informing them that one of the websites they host contain plagiarised content. Request they get this removed within 3 or 5 days, stating that it is illegal to knowingly host material that breaks copyright. Most hosting companies will reply, maybe requesting evidence before giving their client a few days to remove the content.  This usually resolves the problem.

Cornish WebServices monitor webiste plagiarism for our own website and for many of our clients.

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