Stories Ripped off the Pages of My Memoir Sites

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Editing for authors: because every writer needs a good editor.

Cindyt

Gettin wiggy wit it
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THE BOOK: Along Came Cindy, which will be a combo of my offline and online memoir sites.

THE PLAGIARIZED SITE: Our Town is a memoir told via my childhood POV. One particular section is titled Haunted Buford.

THE NEWSPAPER EDITOR: The paper is small, but it has been in publication since Heck was a pup, is sponsored by ads from the largest businesses in town, and the editor is no less than a correspondent of the Atlanta Journal Constitution--she says.

WHAT HAPPENED: Not long ago I announced on AW that this newspaper wanted to publish one of my essays. Whoopee do da and all that. Not now. I started to send a PM about that essay and found she had tried to contact me in October this year about publishing my Haunted Buford section. Twice. And I had somehow missed the PMs. So I sent her a reply. She didn't answer. Being the suspicious person I am I clicked to the newspaper and lo and behold she had published every single one of my ghost story articles. Without permission. I can understand she wanted to use them for her Halloween issue, but she needed my okay first. Duh. I sent her another PM. I posted on her timeline and our towns group a "I PM'd you," but she ignored all my attempts to contact her. During all these attempts she was online and apparently ignoring me. So I went back to the paper and wrote a comment below my stories warning her not to publish anything else from my websites. Not that there's anything I could do about it. I certainly don't have the funds for a lawyer and the FBI intelligence property investigators wouldn't be interested in such small fish. What I could do is call her out on our town's group.

This theft, and the special images a "friend" stole from my Brandon Lee site, is why I don't trust anyone anymore.
 
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DoggoIsLife

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Ugh, what a nightmare. Does she own the newspaper? If not, you should try appealing to a supervisor above her.
 

Cindyt

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First, I sent this creature another warning that I will not only call her out in public but report her to a DMCA agency I've lined up. I'll giver a week, which she doesn't deserve, but I'm sweet.

Also, I did some investigating. This person is just the e editor. So I dug up the publisher and sent her an email.

Next time somebody wants to publish something of mine I am going to do a check on them and their outlet. Sheesh.
 
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Cindyt

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UPDATE: Just talked with the actual editor. Something will be done about this thief, she says.

At any rate, I took down the website and am in the process of editing it into book form for my protection. I have a huge Brandon Lee site that I may do the same with.
 

Cindyt

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RE the article that was stolen. I received an apology from the managing editor. He gave me the choice of them taking it down or giving me a byline with an error thingy about it first being credited to a staff writer. I chose the latter, made Our Town accessible online, and--here's the kicker--the thief had the nerve to say she didn't realize what happened and she was so sorry and she hoped we could work together in the future. :guns: Yeah, no.
 

veinglory

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That;s not exactly something that can happened without being "realized". Unless they have a very complex sleep-plagiarizing disorder.
 

Haggis

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RE the article that was stolen. I received an apology from the managing editor. He gave me the choice of them taking it down or giving me a byline with an error thingy about it first being credited to a staff writer. I chose the latter, made Our Town accessible online, and--here's the kicker--the thief had the nerve to say she didn't realize what happened and she was so sorry and she hoped we could work together in the future. :guns: Yeah, no.
I think an apology accompanied by a couple hundred bucks might be more appropriate.
 

Cindyt

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Yeah, and she has since been shooting me PMs blaming everybody but herself, including her father's lung operation.
That;s not exactly something that can happened without being "realized". Unless they have a very complex sleep-plagiarizing disorder.

I think an apology accompanied by a couple hundred bucks might be more appropriate.
I thought about that, but decided to let it go.
 

HistorySleuth

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I know the let it go feeling. A local author in Rochester, NY plagerised my first book. Sort of a readers digest version as a chapter in his own book, along with plagerizing 4 other authors in the same book. A copyright is nice and all but pretty useless when it costs over 10k to sue.
 

noirdood

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I once had a newspaper use a photograph I took without permission. I sent them a bill for $500. We talked. They sent me $50.
 

Elizabeth George's book Write Away