Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Are you getting ripped off?

WARNING: I get on a soapbox in this post.

Now don't get me wrong, I love aggregators. But there is a right way and a wrong way to do it in my opinion.

A great blog that does it right is Abnormal Returns. Abnormal Returns posts a daily link of interesting articles. But they post the title and link only. You actually have to go to the website where the article is hosted. To me anyone who wants to do a post which drives traffic to a blog, even if they sell ads while doing it (and Abnormal Returns does not), is fine because in the end one has to visit the author's original site. Or in the case of Seeking Alpha, while they post a whole article which does not require a visitor to go to the actual author's site, they have the permission to do so.

But what happens when a website takes your RSS feed, grabs it, and places it in their blog or website to allow their readers to read your content without permission? And they do it while serving their own commercial purposes. In that case I get a bit perturbed.

That is because I think of an RSS feed as a device meant to make it easier for my readers to read my blog. While it is a publicly available device, an RSS feed allows my readers to PRIVATELY read my blog on whatever newsreader they choose without actually having to visit my site. I do not think of my RSS feed as something which makes it easier for you to allow your readers to read your blog to support your purposes, commercial or otherwise.

Thanks to a heads up from Adam I ran across a website that is doing just that. And selling something while doing it. Fortunately for me, my content is not deemed worth stealing as I do not appear on this site Adam found. But a lot of blogs that I read and admire do. And I was just wondering if they even know it. If they do and are okay with it, great. But if they don't than I just wanted to let them know, and this post was the easiest way to do it.

So here is a list of some of the blogs which, in my opinion, are having the content of their feeds used to support another blog/websites commercial purpose:

Gannon On Investing

Trader Mike

Fat Pitch Financials

Bill Cara

A Dash of Insight

Abnormal Returns

Crossing Wall Street

24/7 Wall Street

Controlled Greed

Between The Hedges

Bullish Jim


Downtown Trader

Fallond Picks


Zen Trader

Peridot Capital

Confused Capitalist

Random Roger

There are a few others that I do not read as often but just don't have time to list right now. A couple, like The Kirk Report, seem to have found a way to incorporate an error message into their blog to stop this.

Now this website does provide a link to both the site and its feed, but it also allows one to read all the content of the blog without ever having to go to that specific blog. Again, maybe the above blogs are cool with it, maybe not. But I know I would not be and I know Adam was not. I just thought I would let you know, because I would want to know. So if you have one of the above blogs or know someone who does and want to see where it is at just drop me an email and I will send you the link.

END OF WARNING: Getting Down From My Soapbox

To end on a humorous note, I do note that Broker A's Fly Site is not included. Perhaps it is the numerous F-bombs which saves him. LOL.


Mike said...

One of the reasons I stopped blogging.

That and it required too much time.

Have a great weekend.

downtowntrader said...

Thanks for the heads up. Incidentally, what site is doing the aggregating? You can email me directly if you prefer to not link them.


Brett Steenbarger, Ph.D. said...

I appreciate the heads up on the rip offs; I've linked your post on my personal site. I'd be happy to find out the perp. I'm at steenbab AT AOL dot COM. Many thanks for your blog--


Larry Nusbaum said...

Nice post. Mind if I take it? lol
I wonder if my stuff is appearing out there on other sites.....
You'll note that I take no ads at all on mine....

NO DooDahs said...

If you're on a wordpress blog, the copyright/error message is a plugin that you can find on the plugin database listed on my links page. Think of the plugin as flashing a gun at the splogger.

I do partial RSS feeds only to prevent splogging. Think of that as a double-tap.

Steven said...

Sent you all the link.