Anne Holland at Marketingsherpa has been writing about blogs and copyright lately, more specificlly the practice of some exited people to copy an entire article and re-post it elsewhere. That's not cool. See her pieces here Blog Copyright Theft On The Rise and Blog Copyright Theft on the Rise Part II.
The worldwide 'fair use' idea is pretty simple, if you like what someone has written, or hate it even, you can quote from that piece to critique it or review it or simply highlight it. Quoting from a piece doesn't mean copy the entire piece though. But y'all knew that. Anyway, part of MarketingSherpas story focuses on those fake blogs that scrape RSS feeds off other blogs, sorting themselves after topics like "Google adsense", "Britney Spears" and even advertising - we wrote about the phenomenon in May: "Faux blogs live off RSS feeds and AdSense". So what does Google plan to do about it? Nothing much it seems, as this is what they told Marketingsherpa.
Here's what Barry Schnitt in Google's PR department said in response to my query about this problem:
"Copyright violations are against our policies. We ask that the owner of the copyrighted material comply with the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (the text of which can be found at the U.S. Copyright Office website: https://lcWeb.loc.gov/copyright/) and other applicable intellectual property laws. In this case, this means that if we receive proper notice of infringement, we will forward that notice to the responsible web site publisher. To file a notice of infringement with us, you must provide a written communication."
My take on this? It's not awfully reassuring. Google seems to want to put the policing ball in the copyright owner's corner despite the fact that few of these stolen content sites would exist if it were not for AdSense revenues.
Other articles here on adland that yap on about copyright and Google adsense:
A short chat with Leslie A. Kelly Monday, July 11, 2005
Tsunami-filmer in Khao Lak bankrupts without payment for his film Thursday, July 21, 2005
RSS feeds with ads in them are here to stay. Wednesday, July 06, 2005.
The latest copyright fight - Perfect 10 vs Amazon Monday, July 04, 2005.
Faux blogs live off RSS feeds and AdSense Monday, May 23, 2005.
Google adsense beta testing ads in RSS feeds Friday, April 29, 2005
the buzz is that BzzAgent has partnered with Creative Commons Sunday, May 01, 2005
McCann Erickson Ireland accused of copyright infringement Monday, April 25, 2005
Photos, blogging and fair use Friday, February 04, 2005
Copyright, Copyleft, Copyup, Copydown and Copywrong. Monday, January 17, 2005
Nike convicted of copyright infringement, Zhu Zhiqiang won Thursday, December 30, 2004
When is permission to repost images needed? Wednesday, December 08, 2004
Hotlinking to big sites is legit - they don't care a bit. Wednesday, August 25, 2004
Copyright isn’t a Threat, it’s a Protection Thursday, June 17, 2004
Reuters FAST technology will monitor copyright violation Friday, March 26, 2004