I started my own Purple Diamond blog a couple of months ago and when I saw that I had over 1000 unique hits [1000 individual people] to my site I recognized the power of blogging and I was hooked like many other businesses that have learned that a blog is a great marketing tool if used correctly! However, there are some real big “No No’s” to what you use as content for your blog and it can cost you money and your business reputation.
Til this past week I didn’t honestly think anyone did this on their company blog, but I found out it is quite common and something that laws were created to protect….using other people’s articles without their written permission on YOUR blog . Now, I am not talking about taking a short quote and placing it in your blog or adding a hyperlink to someone’s website where more information is found, I have seen blogs that people unknowingly grabbed an article of interest and posted the entire article in their blog with the name of the author listed. YIKES! If you are doing this you need to stop unless you have written consent from the author. When I started my blog a few months ago I was actually asked by another blogger if he could grab articles to post to his site and I gave him written permission in an email as long as he gave me credit for the work. I knew the purpose of my blog was to help business people be successful and having other bloggers post my articles would be in-line with my mission statement so permission was granted. However, many bloggers are trying to build their own brand and traffic to their website and are not wanting their work posted as a way to build another site. So, there is a copyright law out there to protect them and was passed in 1978 that protects their written work that is posted on the internet even if you do not see a copyright notice and it has some heavy finds attached to it. [note: I am not a lawyer so please review this with yours to verify this information and learn more.]
I am assuming many of the bloggers that I see who are posting other people’s work are not aware of the laws. They might be new to on-line social networking and have a Twitter account and see people Re-Tweet links or they are on Facebook and have used the share option to take what one person has posted and then re-post it on their own profile page, so they get the impression that everything on the internet is FREE and there to share. Building your brand with a blog is powerful, but if you are using someone’s thoughts to offer information you are not helping your business. To gain market share and to be seen as a expert in your field requires you to have your own thoughts and offer your own expertise. If the reason you are posting articles from someone else is because you are too busy to create your own, then I suggest you either get written permission from the author, make time for blogging by prioritizing it in your work week, hire a staff blogger, hire a ghost writer, or take the blog off-line until you have this problem solved. The last thing you need is to ruin the business reputation you have built by using someone’s work without permission.
All my best to your success!