Similar to a situation of a couple years ago, I’ve found another Web site that’s reproducing selected Gadgetopia articles in full, and surrounding them with ads. In no case does this site discuss my posts or write any original posts of their own, they just take some Gadgetopia posts from my RSS feed (and posts from other sites), and put them on their site, amidst a ton of ads.
To add insult to injury, when there’s an image, they don’t even save the image on their own servers. They just hotlink to my image, stealing both my bandwidth and my content. (Yes, I know, there’s an opportunity here to make a point. Goatse (SFW) has been notified and is standing by.)
I contacted the site at their posted email address and asked them exactly what they’re doing. The email bounced.
I’m pretty sure I know what they would say anyway: “We’re just aggregating technology news for our readers, like anyone else.” Yeah, maybe, but there’s a fine line that was crossed they they started re-printing entire posts. They stepped even further over it when they hotlinked images.
They do provide a link back to my site with each article, but that’s a completely empty gesture since, again, they publish the entire content of each post. Why would someone link through?
I’ve never charged for Gadgetopia content, and I’ve always been adamant about putting the entire post in the RSS feed. Given that, can I really complain here? I essentially give content away anyway and make it as easy as possible to read it without advertising, so should I be offended when someone starts putting ads around it?