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Legal Issues with Scraped Content?

Discussion in 'Blogging' started by battman323, Jul 16, 2008.

  1. battman323

    battman323 Regular Member

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    OK so I have a blog that uses WP-O-Matic to scrape RSS feeds and post the content of the feeds.

    I just got word from Domains by proxy that they released my personal contact information to somebody who apparently demonstrated ownership. Here's the email I got:
    So I emailed this dude yesterday with no response. I called just a minute ago and left a message on the answering machine.

    I think there is no legal base. If you syndicate your content, you want it to be copied and transmitted all over - that's how television syndication works. So why the hell are they trying to scare me?
     
  2. *zap*

    *zap* Regular Member

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    lol Whos coming after you the google cops ?
    Whats i think is happening is this guys told your isp hey this guy has stolen my content
    So your isp being a nice guy has taken blog down
    Tell him its your content and you want him to remove it from his site
    And put your blog back up
     
  3. battman323

    battman323 Regular Member

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    My blog hasn't gone down, it's remained up the whole time.

    Google has nothing to do with it. The owner of one of the RSS feeds I'm scraping appears to be coming after the site. It's still running and operation and I have some factors in my favor that would prevent me from going to jail or anything, I'm just asking if there is really any legal basis for this shit.
     
  4. SmallStorm

    SmallStorm Junior Member

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    Did domains by proxy charge you like $20 after releasing your info to them? I had something similar happen. I had a doctors name in my keywords when I was promoting penis enlargement. lol Her name was plastered all over the net along with keywords like "get a bigger penis doctor's name".

    Anyway, her attorney got domains by proxy to release my info and charged me $20 for doing it.

    Chris
     
  5. nicksor

    nicksor BANNED BANNED

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    As long as you cite where the content is from, it should be ok. There are still fair use laws regarding copyrights and published work. If all or most of your site is derived from them without citing you could be violating copyright laws and they could go after you civilly . Unless it's some large company I wouldn't worry.
     
  6. CyberDilemma

    CyberDilemma Regular Member

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    Merely citing copyright material does not get you off the hook. You need permission from the copyright owner to be in the clear. Also, falling under any fair use exceptions is a very tall hurdle when you have commercial intentions.
     
  7. nicksor

    nicksor BANNED BANNED

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    Ok.. So what about the mainstream blogs that quote excerpts of AP articles? If you read what I said, fair use could apply if their work didn't make up a majority of your work.. If you're just ripping straight off, you deserve to be kicked in the nuts. At least run the article through something to 'spin' it up a bit. :)
     
  8. CyberDilemma

    CyberDilemma Regular Member

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    I agree if you are re-writing you should be ok but the OP said he was scraping original content and posting it.
     
  9. Whisker

    Whisker Moderator Staff Member Moderator Premium Member

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    Wow. That's funny and pathetic. Can you just scrape another rss feed in the same niche and tell the other guy to piss off?
     
  10. CrabWalker

    CrabWalker Newbie

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    I had a travel site and aggregated thousands of accommodations details from competitions website. They caught on. Said they would sue me and report me to Google.

    I corresponded with them but never admitted guilt or said sorry or anything that would pin me down to doing something wrong. I said I would try help in finding out what we could do about their concern. Their main angle was that the images where the same size - there where about 5 images per accommodation and 2000 accommodation listed. There was to be a fine per image... :s

    I temporally took down all images... Then put them back up 4 weeks later. That was it. They tried again couple weeks after that and I said it was a self registration process.

    So from that experience I would say it will be very difficult to pin you down for anything.

    Good Luck,
    CrabWalker
     
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2008
  11. *zap*

    *zap* Regular Member

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    Guys forget the laws deal with the real world
    Unless your pockets are very very deep now days copyright is out the window on the net
    Come on look at the record companies and Microsoft they hit a few guys and drop it because the cost is greater then the rewards
    All you need to do post the god damn feed around so more scrapers pick it up and game over for him
     
  12. battman323

    battman323 Regular Member

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    UPDATE:

    After a phone call with AOL's lawyer (I was using one of their feeds) all they're asking is that I delete the posts that have their content, and like mentioned above, the images they have licenses to show and I don't. Once I do that, the whole thing will be dropped.

    Since AOL has deep pockets and stands to gain something by smashing a fly with a hammer to make an example of a small blog like mine, I've decided to just go ahead and comply this time.

    Domains by proxy didn't mention a fine - and they better not.

    Anyway, so I can afford to lose them because I was scraping several different blogs in the same niche. I guess I should seriously look into one of those plugins that rewrite all your blog posts so this doesn't happen again because going through scraped blog posts that are a year old, thousands of them, is a pain in the ass.

    Any recommendations on a wordpress rewrite plugin?
     
  13. MontyzPython

    MontyzPython BANNED BANNED

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    I have heard of this happening with Domains by Proxy. They get the slightest pressure and they reveal your info.

    Someone on here posted a domain registrar that they liked because the 'privacy' company associated kept their yaps shut.

    Does anyone know who that is? I use DBP also and have the same concerns. Thanks.
     
  14. Randy

    Randy Newbie

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    I'd like help on the legal side if I can, I'm not a Lawyer but one of my authors is on a blog I work with. Does it state anywhere in Domains by Proxy terms that they will release without a Court order? Because under law that is what should have been required. Its not for them to play Judge, even if there was proof it would have to be presented to the Courts first.

    Here's what comes from their site:

    hxxp://www.domainsbyproxy.com/popup/subpoenapolicies.aspx

    Did you register your domain via a registrar like Godaddy? You can make a formal complaint against both them and or DBP for releasing your information without a Subpoana. Don't put up with that S**t, stand up to it. Edicts of the law is something that they aren't legally empowered to stand judge upon.
     
  15. battman323

    battman323 Regular Member

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    No, from the way Domain by Proxy was acting and after talking to AOL's lawyer, they did get some kind of affadavit to require them to release my personal information. A legal mandate was presented to them.
     
  16. Randy

    Randy Newbie

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    I did get to look at their terms for you and they do have some crap put in there that they will release your information if its in the interests of legal justice, to me that's a load of balls as they are saying they are the Judge of that when they clearly aren't. People should complain to them that they are overstepping the mark by releasing information without a Court order.
     
  17. babyblackhat

    babyblackhat Registered Member

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    This is bad news for all the rss2blog addicts out there...This is the first time i'm hearing of someone getting sued for scraping copyright content...So can can we be sued if we spin the content a bit..?? I'm curious....
     
  18. Buliwyf

    Buliwyf Junior Member

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    yea... thats what they all do.. give u a civil warning to just remove their content... cause trust me, even they dont want a legal battle on their hands... the lawyers cost a shit load!!!...
     
  19. l30p0ld0

    l30p0ld0 Registered Member

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    where to look for that bot and how do u add them to the ban list?... thnx in advance :)
     
  20. MiLiTARYiV

    MiLiTARYiV Senior Member

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    Just host your blogs offshore and you will be fine