If Copy/Pasting of Blogs with LinkBack is Legal?

Continued from Part 1

copy-pasteHere comes the much awaited part of our series of posts on Blogging for Money. We really thank you for all the appreciating feedback on the previous post.

As we have seen during last one year, blogging has emerged as credible and timely information source for masses. We have heard many of us calling it “New Media” or “Online Media”, meaning that blogging has been rising as a absolute form of News Media. In such a situation is it extremely important to adopt practices that are ethically and legally correct.

We are not at all trying to define rules of blogging here; in fact this is an effort to get a starting point of discussion, where you people will input with your thoughts and ideas to bring forward a better understanding of what and how blogging should be done. We all will learn through the process.

As it was seen in the comments of the previous post too, that people were desperate to find the ways of quick success through systems like Auto blogging or Copy / Pasting content in return of a tiny link back to the original post. I’ll be writing a detailed insight about such stuff in this post, that features webmasters / a bit mature bloggers or the so called probloggers.

Case Study # 2:

When this news that blogging earns you (huge) money gets in the ears of an experienced webmaster or maybe just a webmaster who has experience with installing scripts, scripts modifications or even the script developments, they immediately start looking for the shortcuts to start blogging as well. I mean what’s so wrong in having a blog too, umm… as a secondary income generator?? In such a scenario, what they do?.

Copying Pasting Content:

After having a blog setup, it’s quite easy to start generating content via copying / pasting it from various websites and when the content owner claims, a justification with a tiny linkback is given and it is assumed that now the copy pasting has become legal. Let me tell you, COPYING / PASTING content even after giving LINK BACK is ILLEGAL!! Now this is a very sensitive issue and most of the bloggers in Pakistan aren’t aware of it.

If you are copying from a commercial publication, they might immediately take legal action against you even if you have copied a single passage. No matter you have given the due link backs. I’d like to divert your attention to a recent lawsuit that was filed against New York Times for just fetching the headlines and initial sentences. Even New York Times was linking back to the original article.

Now let’s come straight to the copying pasting content and the content licensing of blogs.

Blogs are usually licensed under Creative Commons 3.0 Share Alike licenses  which allows the sharing, distribution of the content, and strictly asks to give the due attributes to the original content producer and the main and most important thing, THIS LICENSE DOES NOT ALLOW TO USE THE CONTENT FOR THE COMMERCIAL PURPOSES. That means you in no case can use the content for your commercial / money making blog or in simple words, you can’t put ads on the fetched content.

Of course this is not possible, so what usually acceptable is, to fetch the heading, an excerpt/first few lines of the writeup and then give a link back to the original writeup for the full reading. You can put ads only if the producer of the content allows. Otherwise Sorry!

Please be clear, my intentions are not to demotivate the bloggers but to be very honest, it all depends on the producer of the content. if original content producer has got no problem in re-production, re-distribution of his/her content, then it’s like Mian Biwi Razi tay Kee Karay ga Qazi. Otherwise, you are bound not to fetch his/her content. And if you violate, you have good reason to be sued.

In the 3rd part of the series, we’ll feature Auto Blogging / Automatic content re-writing stuff. Also, we’ll discuss legal status of some Pakistani Autoblogs like TeaBreak.pk and Bloggers.pk