Article writing tips, techniques, strategies

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Are You Too Quick to Accuse Others? The Case of an Alleged Plagiarized Article With ME the Victim!

There I was sitting at my computer tapping away at an article that I was writing. I had just cleared my inbox of dozens of emails, some of which were welcome, most of which was useless spam. I heard it come in - "ning-nong." (In case you are wondering, that was my attempt at replicating the sound that my email alert makes.)

"Darn!" I thought to myself. "I just cleared that." So, I checked it again and there it was. One email. A nasty one at that. A person, who I did not know, was abusing me for ripping him off on an article at an article site I had never heard of. He was claiming that I had changed the title of an article that he had written then claimed it as my own using the resource box to point people to my website.

I was given an ultimatum and a date. The threat was clear. "Remove your name and your resource box from MY article!"

Well, you could have knocked me over with a feather. Me? A plagiarist (a copy cat)? Not a chance. Not a chance in the world! So I set about investigating the claim.

This guy was mad and I had no idea what he was going on about. But there was one thing that I knew for certain - his allegations were FALSE. I was innocent. And that was the thrust of the first email that he received from me.

After wasting considerable time looking for the site that this outrage had supposedly occurred at, I eventually found it. I couldn't believe my eyes at first...

Yes, there was HIS article with MY name on it. But then I did a search around the site and found that it was an "article site" that had ripped EVERYBODY off. Several of my articles had been placed there - all of them had been changed and distorted and completely mangled.

I recognized several other authors known to me as well, some quite prominent ones. Every article was full of spelling mistakes, grammatical mistakes and every other mistake that I knew none of these authors would ever make. The site was a complete mess, hastily cobbled together. Whoever owned it was ripping everybody off.

I emailed my accuser with my findings. Several hours later he emailed me back, apologizing. In the intervening period he, too, realized that it was a scam site. He knew in his own mind that I was innocent.

That's when I wondered why some people were so quick to accuse and abuse others without investigating the facts fully. Do you do that? I hope not. Sure, sometimes all of us are ripped off by unscrupulous scam-artists. It is a horrible feeling. But, rather than accuse or abuse an INNOCENT person - make sure you know all the facts first.

Back to that fraudulent website...

Oh... it is a truly woeful thing! Not only has it ripped off hundreds of authors but it has also ripped off the home page template from another site. To make matters even uglier it has simply added the letter "s" to the already existing domain name of another ezine article site. I will refrain from mentioning the domain name of this terrible site as I do not wish to give them any traffic whatsoever. I can't see how it will ever be successful anyway due to the unbelievably low quality it displays!

My opinion is that they are taking thousands of articles from reputable article sites, messing them up with shocking mistakes, mixing up author names with other authors' articles (like they did to me and my "accuser") and generally tainting every person whose name appears on the site. There are thousands of innocent authors involved! I believe that it is being put together by scammers in order to sell advertizing space. It needs to be banned.

So, how did I end up with the person who falsely accused me of plagiarism? He realized that he had made a serious error. He apologized, I accepted and we parted on friendly terms. But I'm still lousy about that terrible rip-off article site. Something definitely needs to be done about that!

About the author: Gary Simpson is the author of eight books covering a diverse range of subjects such as self esteem, affirmations, self defense, finance and much more. His articles appear all over the web. Click here to go to his Motivation & Self Esteem for Success website where you can receive his "Zenspirational Thoughts" plus an immediate FREE copy of his highly acclaimed, life-changing e-book "The Power of Choice."

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