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stormie
11-13-2007, 06:56 PM
I'm not sure if this is a good place for this thread (mods, please move it to the appropriate place) but if you've ever had something published on the web, do a search of your name at least once a month. And don't stop at the first few pages of results. Keep reading until you've exhausted all pages.

I used google to do a search of my name and found everything okay for the first three pages of the results. Buried on the fourth page was the title of something of mine that was published a few years ago. Someone on a forum decided to take the entire thing and cut and paste into their thread. No reason given. Yes, my byline was there, but I should have been asked first. I mean, this piece can be sold for second or reprint rights. It took me awhile to find out whom to contact, but when I did, I emailed the owner of the site asking that it be removed. She obliged.

johnnysannie
11-13-2007, 07:13 PM
Good advice, Stormie. I do this on a regular basis and it is a wise action.

Thanks for pointing it out to others who may not have ever thought about doing this.

Toothpaste
11-13-2007, 07:35 PM
Once a month? How about once a day?

I think I am totally addicted to google. I have found some strange stuff out there. The weirdest was a thesis that quoted a paper I wrote in University (I was cited in the footnotes). Only problem, the paper I wrote that she was citing? It was satirical. She unfortunately was quoting it as fact. Yes I think that was the weirdest thing I found.

stormie
11-13-2007, 07:43 PM
Once a month? How about once a day?
I agree. Or at least once a week. I shouldn't have waited that long.

I think I am totally addicted to google. I have found some strange stuff out there. The weirdest was a thesis that quoted a paper I wrote in University (I was cited in the footnotes). Only problem, the paper I wrote that she was citing? It was satirical. She unfortunately was quoting it as fact. Yes I think that was the weirdest thing I found. That could be a new thread: What's the weirdest thing you've found about your writing on the Internet?

benbradley
11-13-2007, 07:47 PM
I've seen threads before about online plagiarism, but it does bring up several points. Firstly, if your name is fairly common (mine seems to be), it's an arguably good idea to select an unusual pseudonym to make searching for "unauthorized" uses of your name and works eaiser.

So I just had to go Googling for "Ben Bradley" and the first reference to me is my Blogspot blog on the fourth page of results! That's also me a few more links down "Ben Bradley File Notes" where I did some audio processing that got put on a CD. What I found most amusing was this page:
http://benbradley.net/2007/07/03/other-people-named-ben-bradley/
Maybe when I get a novel published or do something else publicly noteworthy I'll ask him to to add me to that page.
ETA: I left a comment on that blog entry.

Also, it's advisable to search on the CONTENT of your work as well as your name. This finds instances of your work online where your name is, for some reason, not included, or even just misspelled. A search can easily be done with the first five to ten words of a sentence from your text included in quotes. And yes, you have to do this for every work you've done. Well, maybe not - I recall that you can set up Google to email you when it finds new matches to a search string you give, so you can set it up once and get notified of all new instances Google indexes.

I just checked my blog, it appears the last entry isn't yet indexed in Google, even though it's a few months old (even Google doesn't read my blog!). But I can Google this sentence fragment (including the quotes in the search string:
I've spent many years in online posting"
and come up with my first Blogspot entry, and fortunately, nothing else.

I'd suggest doing this for print-only publications as well. In the newsgroup rec.audio.pro there's a guy who wrote an article on microphone modifications to improve performance, and he was quite unhappy to find where someone else had put the whole article online (the text may have been scanned which makes it harder to find, but a search on the title is likely to find it). He was quite angry, but he did come to an agreement with the website owner to have only part of the article online, and a link to the publisher where one could order a reprint or the relevant back issue of the magazine.

Shadow_Ferret
11-13-2007, 07:49 PM
I can't imagine anyone bothering to reprint anything of mine. If they do they'll be roundly flamed for posting crap and it will be removed all on its own.

Pat~
11-13-2007, 08:09 PM
I did a yahoo search, and found my website #4 - not too bad for a podunk little site!

I don't put whole works online, unless they're already published, or slated-to-be published poetry. To be honest, I don't think poetry is way up there with the list of stuff that people would want to plagairize--it just doesn't pay.

I think I will google a few of those now, though, just out of curiosity!

KTC
11-13-2007, 08:12 PM
I can't be bothered. Uck.

jenngreenleaf
11-13-2007, 08:13 PM
I used to google all the time because, for some odd reason, the article I wrote for Dollar Stretcher a LONG time ago keeps popping up on other sites that don't pay writers for content. It's weird. And, ever since I started writing, four other Jennifer Hollowell's have popped up in the searches . . . a radio dj, a politician, a smoke shop owner and a real estate agent. I'm giving serious consideration to changing back to Jennifer Brennick, my maiden name.

Toothpaste
11-13-2007, 08:15 PM
For anyone sending out submissions and stuff I think it is really important to google your name. Because agents etc certainly do. You need to be aware what's out there about you. Me, it's all book stuff and some acting stuff. But even my friends who are in less public jobs are online, their picture from a work website, a paper they once wrote on micro biology.

My agent once googled someone who submitted something to her. She had asked for a full, and found the person had dissed her in his blog. That didn't sit to well with her.

Prospective employers google you, it's unfortunate, but true. So one should know what's out there.

KTC
11-13-2007, 08:19 PM
For anyone sending out submissions and stuff I think it is really important to google your name. Because agents etc certainly do. You need to be aware what's out there about you. Me, it's all book stuff and some acting stuff. But even my friends who are in less public jobs are online, their picture from a work website, a paper they once wrote on micro biology.

My agent once googled someone who submitted something to her. She had asked for a full, and found the person had dissed her in his blog. That didn't sit to well with her.

Prospective employers google you, it's unfortunate, but true. So one should know what's out there.

Argh. Yikes. Well...I only have writing credits. I do remember a crazed extremist with my name though...from a google search I did about a year ago? I hope nobody confuses us.


ETA: You had me worried. A search produced quite a few hits...but there seems to be many people with my name.

My own hits were all writer related; WCDR announcements, my blog, magazine articles that have been posted online as well, poetry, etc. No agent bashing! My baby's in an agents hands right now too. pppppppphhhhhhhhhhheeeeeeeeeewwwwwwwwwww.

Shadow_Ferret
11-13-2007, 08:19 PM
Oops. I googled my name and my blog came up and the very first example of it is my dissing of my son's teacher.

I hope she isn't googling me.

mscelina
11-13-2007, 08:20 PM
I make it a matter of my business-related jobs to google myself once a week. Ever since I found some of my psuedonym's novellas being sold on e-bay for a dollar and directly in competition with my publisher, I thought it a good business practice.

It's also interesting to see how your pages change. For example, yesterday when I started googling, my books Fictionwise page came up number one. Now it's my book trailer. It lets me know what's working and what people are looking at.

mscelina
11-13-2007, 08:21 PM
oh and for the record, AW posts do show up. Every once in a while, I have to wince.

KTC
11-13-2007, 08:25 PM
Yes, my byline was there, but I should have been asked first. I mean, this piece can be sold for second or reprint rights. It took me awhile to find out whom to contact, but when I did, I emailed the owner of the site asking that it be removed. She obliged.


It's the people who steal your stuff without crediting you that the google search won't help.

jenngreenleaf
11-13-2007, 08:25 PM
Oops. I googled my name and my blog came up and the very first example of it is my dissing of my son's teacher.

I hope she isn't googling me. LOL!! I've had "people" in my life google me to see if I'm really a writer, to see if I lie, and to see if I'm bad mouthing them, so I try to keep rants to myself as much as possible.

It's also interesting to see how your pages change. For example, yesterday when I started googling, my books Fictionwise page came up number one. Now it's my book trailer. It lets me know what's working and what people are looking at. This interests me, too - the last time I googled, a lot of weird links I haven't even thought of in years popped up. Then, when I just did a minute ago, a bunch of interviews and the Just Hit Send thread were all topping the list. Interesting. People must be digging into my history??

KTC
11-13-2007, 08:26 PM
Oops. I googled my name and my blog came up and the very first example of it is my dissing of my son's teacher.

I hope she isn't googling me.


Ouch. This is a very interesting thread. (-; I only post my writing on my blog...and only stuff I have no intention of publishing.

mscelina
11-13-2007, 08:31 PM
My favorite is to see my name listed on someone else's blog who then asks "Why do they all have names that sounds like porn stars???"

*sigh*

Because my parents thought it was funny.

I also get a lot of Buffy the Vampire Killer sites.

Shadow_Ferret
11-13-2007, 08:36 PM
I really enjoying seeing my name pop up associated with things from my childhood, like a "Letter to the Editor" for a comic book, or my first published "fanfics" way back in the 70s long before Al Gore even created the Internet.

jenngreenleaf
11-13-2007, 08:40 PM
My favorite hit the other day was this one to a Tiffany Fan site:

http://www.tiffany.org/forum/nicemail001.html

1996? I thought that would've been long gone. LOL

Momento Mori
11-13-2007, 09:00 PM
I once googled my on-line name and discovered that someone had plagiarised 4 of my blog entries. It's the only time anything of mine has been plagiarised and I've never really understood why they'd want to take my mundane accounts of days spent feeling tired and living with horny flatmates as their own.

With my real name, I Google it every few weeks to see what's out there and apart from a mention on a college boyfriend's blog (actually, more of a rant of women who'd dumped him, which reminded me exactly why I had dumped him) there's nada.

But Stormie's advice is still good.

MM

Mayntz
11-13-2007, 09:06 PM
This actually paid off for me last week -- I do periodically check my name on Google to see where my work might be ending up, and I found a piece that I'd originally submitted to a magazine in August 2006 has been published on their website. I'd never been notified or paid in any way, though that's a convoluted story -- we moved about 5 weeks after I submitted that story, and apparently the USPS forwarding never worked properly. I contacted the magazine and was told that they'd sent a contract, but the online editor was never told they hadn't gotten it returned and signed.

Long story short: because I googled for my byline, I'll be seeing the check shortly. :)

Shadow_Ferret
11-13-2007, 09:07 PM
Well that was weird.

I googled Shadow Ferret and on the second page I came upon this:

http://shadow-ferret.stumbleupon.com/

Says Shadow Ferret is a 17 year old guy from somewhere in New York, but he's using an icon I created 12 years ago when I first came online!

jenngreenleaf
11-13-2007, 09:18 PM
Weird!!!

I didn't even know what icons were, let alone that the existed, when I first came online in 1994. LOL I was still trying to figure out what newsgroups and chatrooms were!

JoNightshade
11-13-2007, 09:20 PM
So far, I haven't caught anyone stealing my stuff. I can't think why anyone would want to, really! But actually I have four permutations of my name online:

Firstname Maiden Name
Nickname Maiden Name
Firstname Married Name
Nickname Married Name

Firstname Maiden Name is the worst because it pops up with a bunch of fanfic I wrote when I was in high school. Totally humiliating. :) Although oddly enough another person of the same name seems to have appeared lately. She's an aspiring actress in some minor roles. I wonder how she feels about having written nerdy fanfic. :)

Nickname Maiden Name is the best as far as publishing credits go because it comes up with a list of Amazon links for this nonfiction guidebook I wrote. I'm actually kinda ticked off about that one because they were supposed to use my full name and I told them several times, and they still printed it with my nickname. Grr.

And then Nickname Married Name is great for any professional writing because it's the name I use with the travel company I work for. The number one ranking is this very big time marketing blog that used a newsletter I did as a positive example. It's also the name I used on a bit of voicework I did for my husband's company, so that shows up too.

Shadow_Ferret
11-13-2007, 09:35 PM
I was still trying to figure out what newsgroups and chatrooms were!
I still haven't figured out what newsgroups are. :D

And my wife caught me in chatrooms, so I don't do that anymore either.

jenngreenleaf
11-13-2007, 09:37 PM
Newsgroups seemed to have been a discussion board type of thing like here. Only, different. Great at explain'in things ain't I? ;)

Chat rooms can be really bad. Your wife's smart. ;)

oarsman
11-13-2007, 09:39 PM
I found a magazine article I wrote back in 2003, posted on an Italian web site and translated into Italian. It lists me as the "Autore". When I learn enough Italian to write an email, I'm going to ask them to fly me over for a visit. :D

clockwatcher
11-13-2007, 09:53 PM
I just googled myself and apparently I have unclaimed property.

Toothpaste
11-13-2007, 10:50 PM
Have you ever googled your name followed by the word "is"? It's kind of funny. Or sad. The first hit I get is "Adrienne is lost."

WriterGirl2007
11-13-2007, 11:18 PM
I've googled my name many times! Lots of pages of stuff about me, and it's all fine. Except I did find a blog where some people were talking about an article I wrote and posted a link to my resume and then went on to talk about how they didn't like the person I wrote about, etc. It was interesting.

benbradley
11-13-2007, 11:50 PM
It's the people who steal your stuff without crediting you that the google search won't help.
Read my earlier post, you can look for your content instead of your name, and have a good likelihood of finding uncredited copies of your work.

maestrowork
11-14-2007, 12:09 AM
But how do you catch those who cut and paste but don't keep your byline?

Marlys
11-14-2007, 12:49 AM
But how do you catch those who cut and paste but don't keep your byline?
You can Google a distinctive phrase from your work, or several key words from an article or story. If you write fiction, try your characters' names.

Calla Lily
11-14-2007, 01:10 AM
Thanks for the head-up guys. It'd been awhile since I did this. Everyone who linked to my reviews gave me credit (Toothpaste, you're a sweetie!), and the only funky stuff was an old (very old) MSTies bio.

Pat~
11-14-2007, 01:13 AM
This actually paid off for me last week -- I do periodically check my name on Google to see where my work might be ending up, and I found a piece that I'd originally submitted to a magazine in August 2006 has been published on their website. I'd never been notified or paid in any way, though that's a convoluted story -- we moved about 5 weeks after I submitted that story, and apparently the USPS forwarding never worked properly. I contacted the magazine and was told that they'd sent a contract, but the online editor was never told they hadn't gotten it returned and signed.

Long story short: because I googled for my byline, I'll be seeing the check shortly. :)
Mayntz? Melissa, is that you??

(It's me, grassblade!)

skelly
11-14-2007, 02:03 AM
And my wife caught me in chatrooms, so I don't do that anymore either.
Been there. Done that. :D

Joanna_S
11-14-2007, 03:31 AM
Although I've googled my name numerous times (all entries were about me as my name is unique) I hadn't thought to Google phrases. So I put in an axiom I'd written for Yo Meow Ma. Wasn't looking for plagiarism; they were axioms, after all. Well I found several entries. Most were people just using the axioms as quotes on their pages. But one site was a poetry website. They held a contest to write poems based on a list of quotes -- all of which were from Yo Meow Ma. Very surreal to read a bunch of poems based on my writing. (I was not credited as the originator of the quotes, of course. That happens a lot. I suppose once a quote is copied it no longer seems important who wrote it.)

I also found a magazine article about the book. I'd been interviewed for it years ago and never found out when the article was published. This is the first time I've seen it. Very interesting.

Anyway, thanks for the suggestion about quoting phrases. I hadn't done that before and this was fascinating.

Mayntz
11-14-2007, 08:52 PM
Mayntz? Melissa, is that you??

(It's me, grassblade!)

Hi Pat. :) Yes, it's me, finding a new online home.

JoNightshade
11-14-2007, 09:44 PM
Although nobody's ever stolen my work, I do write under my boss's name for work. "Her" articles get stolen all the time. So I guess that's like my work getting ripped. I rarely do anything about it because the articles are so full of branding that it's good for us. The one time I did make a stink, however, was when some dude posted it as his own work! Pssh, come on.

Adam Israel
11-14-2007, 10:02 PM
I'm a fan of using Google Alerts (http://www.google.com/alerts).

My only problem is separating the signal from the noise. This is how I have it setup to search now: "adam israel" OR "adam m. israel" -palestine -palestinian -gaza -semitism -hamas -jewish