I am not a crook - Oh yes you are - A copyright crook!!!

Real Estate Broker/Owner with Mission Grove Realty Inc.

real estate thiefHave you searched the web lately for content that has been copied from your site?

I use copyright checking services and have not had anything reported from these services...EVER.

That's a good thing.....or so I thought!

If you have a website with original content and want to maintain good organic search rankings....read this ENTIRE post.

I was updating some content the other day and decided to try a simple test. I copied a paragraph and pasted it to my Google browser. I was a little surprised when the result showed not one or two but......twenty two (That's 22) sites that had the same exact paragraph text. I opened all of the sites and some did add a word here and there that was there own yet, still my content. The others simply copied and pasted entire pages from my site....images and all!

What to do?

I called and emailed each and every one of the site owners. I have to say that all but 2 were very apologetic and removed their sites immediately. One took a few days. He admitted right upfront that he took the content and liked it so much he had to copy it. The last one took a bit longer. The content was removed, a little piece at a time. Each time took another call and eventually the domain was re-named and all the content re-posted. Directly from our site. Another phone call and a little denial.....the site was removed again.

All in all, a good first step but, their content was showing in Google's organic search results. Not a good thing and will hurt our organic search results and our ranking with Google (Not that Google ranking means everything). To believe that it wont hurt at all would be reckless at the least. Everything helps.

What to do about Google?

We have an analytics account and decided to check what, if anything, they had to say. Lo and behold.....there is a section dedicated to protecting your material. A few short steps. Copy your content, paste it and reference the domains that contain your content. Google verifies the information and....POOF...it should be removed and also flagged for infringement. I filled out the online request and submitted to Google. I assumed it would takes weeks, if not more. Patience is a virtue they say. The next day I received communication from Google that our content was verified, the other sites removed from Google and all were flagged as infringing. WOW........that was easy and worth the effort.

All in all, it only took a couple of weeks and all of our content was removed from other sites and our organic search results improved as well. Original content is very valuable in many ways. I did not think others would comply without having to have our attorneys (costly) formerly request removal of our content. With Google's help, their content was removed from search results and the owners sites sand-boxed. A very good thing (as Martha would say)  for sure!






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Comments (10)

Lorraine or Loretta Kratz
Crescent Moon Realty, Inc. & Land N Sea Auctions. - San Marcos, CA
Certified Negotiation Consultants


Interesting read. Not sure I completely understand the underhanded methods.

Apr 11, 2011 10:58 AM
Christopher Walker
Mission Grove Realty Inc. - Hemet, CA
Local Broker and Realtor - Hemet & San Jacinto, CA

Glad you dont !!

One broker pays an agent, not under his or her control, without the broker of records knowledge. Truly ciminal behavior in my opinion and, unless it's happened to you or have done it yourself, the thought would probably never cross your mind. : )

Apr 11, 2011 11:26 AM
Mike Bolaski
Coldwell Banker - 1000 Palms, CA

Hopefully someone engaging in that type of behavior realizes the error of their ways before it's too late.

Apr 26, 2011 07:52 PM
Sidney Kutchuk - Realty Works Temecula Kutchuk - Realty Works Temecula
Realty Works Temecula - Temecula, CA
Realty Works Temecula

Hi Christopher, I see you wrote this quite awhile ago but it still applies and really should have received more attention!  I am going to check out what you say because I am seeing many copied articles.

Aug 27, 2011 02:03 PM
Aida Pinto
Independent Real Estate Broker - Los Angeles, CA
Real Estate Broker (562) 884-6196

I have suggested this and will reblog it...I know you wrote this a few months ago and I'm with Jane...it should have received more attention.

Nov 01, 2011 07:39 PM
Wendy Cutrufelli
Alain Pinel Realtors - Walnut Creek, CA
Contra Costa Realtor

I also use copyright checking service and have never received a notice.  I think I will copy and paste some text as you suggested.  Thank you very much for sharing the information about Google's enforcement.  I hope I won't have to use it.

Nov 01, 2011 10:22 PM
Christopher Walker
Mission Grove Realty Inc. - Hemet, CA
Local Broker and Realtor - Hemet & San Jacinto, CA

One a month at the minimum! It seems funny that copyscape and others dont catch this sort of thing. Doint it yourself is certainly the way to go. Only takes a few minutes and costs nothing.

Nov 02, 2011 02:54 PM
Larry Lawfer
YourStories Realty Group - Newton, MA
"I listen for a living." It's all about you.

Seems like an awful lot of work to protect rather than promote.  I have a different approach.  When I find people who have copied my work, my first approach is to call and thank them. Then I require that they link back to me.  In this manner I am not making it confrontational, but collaborative. The more people who use my content and link back to me the better.  I have gained a great deal of google juice becuase of this approach.  Many people don't understand copyright and do the copying becuase they can, not because they are trying to rip you off.

Dec 24, 2011 01:29 AM
Christopher Walker
Mission Grove Realty Inc. - Hemet, CA
Local Broker and Realtor - Hemet & San Jacinto, CA

Larry, sorry to take so long to get back on this.

Your approach is very good indeed and have tried that.
The unfortunate part is that Google and other search engines seem to see it differently. What I have found is that it will still lessen the value of your content. Google is the only one that I truly track though. It seems that, even with a backlink to your original content, Google looks at it as being public property more tan original content. Not a good thing when it comes to exposure. Would be nice to find a way, if one exists, to keep the value of original content and still allow others to use it. If you have some additional information on this, Call me sometime. I would certainly appreciate it.


Jan 12, 2012 08:51 AM
Georgie Hunter R(S) 58089
Hawai'i Life Real Estate Brokers - Haiku, HI
Maui Real Estate sales and lifestyle info

This is very eye opening.  Thanks for posting about it.  Now I need to do some testing myself.

Aug 11, 2014 07:11 AM