Are You Sure You Want to Copy?

Home Stager with Room Service Home Staging

Copy and paste  all you want but you’re wasting your time.  A View of ActiveRain’s Community Guidelines.

As part of Lynn Friedman’s 2014 BIG Blog Jumpstart at AR Challenge Yourself copyrightfor Your Own Success, she has asked us to read the Community Guidelines and post our thoughts.

  If you haven’t read them, or it’s been many years since you have (that would be me) then you can find them

One topic that hit a chord with me was that of plagiarism.

I’m not going to elaborate here about how wrong, and oh yes, illegal it is.  I’m sure you know that by now.  Should you need a refresher, however, then I encourage you to read Lenn Harley’s blog.  And, should you be under the misconception that no one will do or say anything, may I direct you to Kathleen Daniels.

No.. I’m just going to tell you why copying/copyright infringement, plagiarism are all a waste of time.

Here’s why copying is a waste of time:

1. We’ll find out!

Oh yes, there are ways to tell if it’s been lifted from another source.  

If you highlight a few sentences in an AR post, right click, you’ll seen an option to “Search Google for……” and it will take you to a Google search page that will show posts, pages, etc with those words.  Often you can see the person’s post in the #1 spot.  Or…. as in the case of some you’ll see that the words were lifted from another source.  You can do the same for a photo.

If some of you leave to run and Google your post, I’ll understand.

wasting time2. Readers will get wise and bypass any post with your name on it.

Think not?
 I know that I do.  Every week when I seek out posts to highlight, I strongly dislike wasting my time when I find posts that have been copied.  

I feel insulted.  

Trust me, I’m “Switzerland” on most matters … live and let live…  but I do take a stand here. If copied material is all you’re serving at your buffet, I’ll pass.

3.  If your goal is to establish relationships and network with others, this is not the way to do it.  

From my observations, members here want to work and refer to people they feel they can trust and who are professional.

Clearly I’m not going to change anyone’s mind about copying but if you do, then at least you’ve been forewarned.



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Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 - Mason, OH
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

Kathy, some of the biggest ruckuses I've seen in the Rain involve plagiarism, and it's not a sin that is easily forgiven when so many folks work so hard to create original words and photos. 

Jan 29, 2014 12:47 AM #24
Bill & Cyndi Daves
Hiawassee, Young Harris, Blairsville, Hayesville, Murphy and Beyond! - Hiawassee, GA
TeamDAVES - Your REALTORS In the GA/NC Mountains!

Kathy - Talk about laziness!  Why even bother?  There are always those who will try to circumvent the system and take the easy way out.  While they may ride high on someone else's coattails for a short while, it will not last!

Jan 29, 2014 01:03 AM #25
Randy Shamburger
Movement Mortgage - Greenville, SC
FHA, VA, USDA and Conventional Mortgage Expert

Originality is the best policy, thanks for sharing.

Have a Big day,


Jan 29, 2014 01:03 AM #26
Kathleen Daniels
KD Realty - 408.972.1822 - San Jose, CA
San Jose Homes for Sale-Probate & Trust Specialist

Kathy, I just wrote about this.  What bothers me is that AR will remove the points for a copy and pasted post but the copied posts are not removed.  I just don't get that. It seems AR is violating their own guidelines.  What's up with that?  Leaving them up is not serving the community.  IMHO.

Jan 29, 2014 01:14 AM #27
Than Maynard
Coldwell Banker Heart of Oklahoma - Purcell, OK
Broker - Licensed to List & Sell - 405-990-8862

I haven't reblogged anything in a while, so I don't know if the format has changed, but....

It looks like people are 'reblogging' into new posts. Is this to get 225 pts instead of 25?

Jan 29, 2014 01:14 AM #28
Karen Crowson
Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage - Rancho Bernardo, CA
Your Agent for Change

In this space, we have an author's permission to use their material if the re-blog feature is enabled. Like a blog? Then re-blog and give credit where credit is due.

Folks intent on bad behavior should consider this - if it's so easy to check, what if your prospects are checking to see if your words are your own?  Or in this space? Other agents with a potential referral?  Hmmm, something to consider.

Jan 29, 2014 01:29 AM #29
Sharon Tara
Sharon Tara Transformations - Portsmouth, NH
New Hampshire Home Stager

Nice twist on the subject....well done!  I understand people not knowing that using photos they find online is wrong, but there's no way anyone can claim ignorance to the fact that copying someone's written word is wrong.  That has always been the case!

Jan 29, 2014 03:10 AM #30
Suzie Townley
Diamond Partners, Inc - Gardner, KS
Relaxed Professionalism

Very nicely done!  I had an agent yesterday ask if she could just copy and paste something -- I told her to read it, think about it and then write her own thoughts about it! 

Jan 29, 2014 03:41 AM #31
Inna Ivchenko
Barcode Properties - Encino, CA
Realtor® • Green • GRI • HAFA • PSC Calabasas CA

I'm looking forward what is going to happen with 'copy-paste' posts. There are a lot of them here. But I agree with Kathleen: why remove points, but not to remove those posts?

Jan 29, 2014 04:22 AM #32
Kathy Streib
Room Service Home Staging - Delray Beach, FL
Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224

Gary- What I've seen and am primarily addressing are whole articles being lifted from other sources!  

Michael- I'm not familiar with thatbut I know there are articles that people use that they read in newsletters. 

BLiz- I normally prefer to have a live and let live outlook but when i see how hard others work here to write an original post, then I think it takes away from their hard efforts, especially on the few occasions that those pilfered posts were lifted. 

Bill & Cyndi- I'd rather read an original post that may have a differing opinion from mine or may not have all of the pretty  pictures and such than something that's been lifted.

Randy- yes it is. 

Kathleen- That doesn't seem to make much sense. 

Than- I'm not sure what you mean, but you still only receive 25 points for reblogging a post.  Many have written more than the cursory few words because it is their style. 

Karen- I love the reblog feature!  I do think that with the new programming here, it's often hard to tell a reblog from the original. 

Sharon- I agree.  I know that when I write about some local events, it's hard not to use some of the same words when describing the event.  However, yes, I've seen whole articles lifted.

Suzie- exactly.  It takes a little more time, but it pays off down the road. 

Inna- I don't know about that.  Good question. 

Jan 29, 2014 04:57 AM #33
Gene Mundt, IL/WI Mortgage Originator - FHA/VA/Conv/Jumbo/Portfolio/Refi
NMLS #216987, IL Lic. 031.0006220, WI Licensed. APMC NMLS #175656 - New Lenox, IL
708.921.6331 - 40+ yrs experience

Kathy:  I agree it's a waste of time.  Eventually, it will catch up with you too.  Not sure why, but I've seen more of this lately than ever before.  Maybe we're getting better at detecting it when it happens??


Jan 29, 2014 05:38 AM #34
Lou Ludwig
Ludwig & Associates - Boca Raton, FL
Designations Earned CRB, CRS, CIPS, GRI, SRES, TRC


Thanks for sharing your insight . . . . right on point.

Good luck and success.

Lou Ludwig

Jan 29, 2014 07:19 AM #35
Jack O'Neal
HomeSmart Elite Group - Gilbert, AZ

Kathy you made some good points on here.  It's not hard to use rewrite an article in your own words.  It's certainly better than copy and pasting!  And legal!

Jan 29, 2014 08:10 AM #36
Lynn B. Friedman
Atlanta Homes ODAT Realty Call/Text 404-939-2727 Buckhead - Midtown - Westside -- and more ... - Atlanta, GA
Concierge Service for Our Atlanta Sellers & Buyers

Dear Kathy -

Great summary of the COPYRIGHT issue. I am generally happy to share with anyone but not so happy when my work is used without permission!

Have a happy day -

Jan 29, 2014 08:51 AM #37
Silvia Dukes PA, Broker Associate, CRS, CIPS, SRES
Tropic Shores Realty - Ich spreche Deutsch! - Spring Hill, FL
Florida Waterfront and Country Club Living

Kathy, this verbatim copy and past is nothing but laziness in the least.

Jan 29, 2014 10:00 AM #38
Cathy Wolters
Wolters Realty & Property Management Company - Cocoa, FL
Your Brevard County Property Management Expert

Kathy, very good points about not copying other people's work.  I like that you mention developing trust and confidence. 

Jan 29, 2014 10:52 AM #39
Debbie Reynolds
Platinum Properties - Clarksville, TN
Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent

I still can't understand why people would do this with all the warnings and posting about it. I can almost tell when it isn't coming from the author.


Jan 29, 2014 12:06 PM #40
Paul A. Perry
Certified Inspections, PC - Residential & Commercial Property Inspections - Crossville, TN
Home Inspector - Crossville & Cookeville, TN

If it's good information, heck yeah, spread it around.  Just be honest and give credit to the original author.  It's easy to do and allows people to build trust in you and your information while also promoting the source.  Win, win situation!

Jan 29, 2014 01:42 PM #41
Grant Schneider
Performance Development Strategies - Armonk, NY
Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes

Kathy - it is important that you brought this up.  Copying is so easy to locate with Google.  It is lazy and it says  that the writer has nothing to contribute.  And Google knows too.

Jan 30, 2014 04:17 AM #42
David Spencer
Keller Williams Northland - Kansas City, MO
Show Me real estate in Kansas City

If you are blogging, what is the point of copying. You are no longer unique.

Jan 30, 2014 08:56 AM #43
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Kathy Streib

Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224
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