Are you blogging in hopes of attracting more business? If so, you have probably been hearing the importance of “Content Marketing.” The experts tell us that Google wants to match user searches with relevant, useful content. Google rewards a higher search engine ranking to bloggers or website owners that have lots of useful, relevant content. The higher we rank on searches, the greater number of potential clients we will get. The experts also tell us to include pictures. Most people like articles with pictures better than articles without.One amazing blog post or web page may not be enough to earn the coveted first page rankings. It takes a number of blog posts containing quality content.
Writing Quality Content Takes Time - Don't be Tempted to Plagiarize or Steal Pictures
Writing quality content for blog posts takes time. Finding relevant, quality pictures also takes time and/or money. Occasionally, bloggers in their quest to build a quality blog are tempted to take unethical and/or illegal short cuts. Don’t. We should have all learned back in school that you can not plagiarize. You can not copy someone else’s work and present it as your own. Plagiarism is a form of stealing. Likewise, if you use a photograph that you do not own the rights to use, you are stealing. Legally, the correct term may be that you are violating copyright laws.
All photographs initially belong to the photographer or, in some cases, the photographer’s employer. Just because a photograph is on the Internet, that does not mean that it can be used by anyone for any purpose. The absence of watermarks, copyright symbols or a signature, does not mean that it is free to use. If you do not have the legal right to use a photograph, do not use it. If you purchase the image or find a free source of images, be sure to read the “fine” print to determine how and where the photograph can be used. If you do not know whether you have rights to use a picture that you did not take photograph, don’t use it. This link Public Domain Images - What is Allowed and What is Not provides a lot of good information about what is and is not allowed with public domain images. Bottom line: Active Rain does not allow plagiarism or violating image copyrights.
Active Rain Awards Points for Original Content
Most of us that are blogging on Active Rain, start out with plans to be blogging for business. (After we become addicted to blogging on Active Rain, our purpose may change somewhat.) Anyway, the Active Rain point system was designed to reward Active Rain members for writing and sharing original content that the members create.
Content That You Will NOT Get Active Rain Points For
Active Rain does not reward points for posts that are basically copying information from other sources even if it is correctly attributed to the source because it is NOT original content.
- Information copied from a government website (If you explain or discuss the information, you will get points.)
- Motivational Quotes
- Bible passages
- Information republished from marketing materials
- Large sections copied from the MLS
See Active Rain Community Guidelines It is in the Respect the Active Rain Community Section.
You can post it, you just won't get points for it because it is not original content.
Benefits of Good Quality Original Content
If you are blogging for business, plan to invest the time necessary to research and write your blogs. Original, quality content that will appeal to YOUR prospective clients and/or readers is what you are striving for. Active Rain awards points for original content. Google awards higher search engine rankings to those with original, quality content. The more people that find your posts, you will have more potential business. Writing quality posts can also be very rewarding. So, have fun with it.
By the way, Lynn Friedman's 2017 Blog Jumpstart Challenge---enhance-your-personal-best provided the motivation for this post.
Horse and Country Property Specialist
Hayden Outdoors, LLC Colorado