Blog It! enables evergreen "Theme-Based Content Sites" to use RSS to distribute new pages via a technique we call "site-blogging!" This forum is for exchanging Blog It! ideas and tips. (If you are interested in full-blogging (ex., adding a full WordPress blog to your site), THE way to go is through Infin It!. See that forum.)

Moderator: Antoinette from Bedford

#1394246 by Dee from Cape Cod
Mon Mar 12, 2018 8:50 pm

Hi Jacob -

I'm with Jacki on this. I don't think there's any way to keep certain people from subscribing to your RSS feed.

Jacob from Fort Kent Mills wrote:Cynics following and doing everything to find fault with what you write, spelling errors and more, trying to damage your reputation.

There nothing you can do about people who find fault with what you write. There will always be cynics and nay-sayers out there. Sad to say, that's the way of the world these days. :(

As for those who find fault with spelling or grammar or punctuation errors, there is something you can do about that. :wink:

Best Regards,

#1394294 by Debs from SiteSell
Tue Mar 13, 2018 2:34 pm
Ignore yes, but make sure your site and brand isn't being harmed by posts/sites out there. Keep an eye on them, copy and save any posts they make that are derogatory specifically to you or your site, and show them to your attorney.

#1394364 by Will from Los Ojos
Wed Mar 14, 2018 11:39 pm
Hi all,

I think the RSS feed can cause problems, but perhaps not in the way most people are thinking. These days, I'm coming to the conclusion that bad guys are using it to copy complete pages from a site.

My working hypothesis is that this is carried out using automated software, and that it's getting its feed straight from the SBI RSS feed as soon as the pages are published. This doesn't happen to all sites using RSS by any means, but at a very rough guess, perhaps up to 10% of well established sites have this problem. That's only a finger in the air guess, but I've seen it often enough to know that it's real.

Here's a real world example. Jacki posted earlier in this thread, so I've taken a look at her site, [Domain Private]

The blog page is here.
[Domain Private]/drought-smart-plants-blog.html

The first entry for me today is titled
Portulaca - the Moss Rose, Sunrose or Purslane
[Domain Private]/portulaca.html

The copy of that page can be found here

The main content of the page has been lifted directly from drought-smart-plants, and the publication date is the same as on Jacki's blog page.

These people really like Jacki's content because this page from her site
[Domain Private]/hypertufa-pinch-pots.html dated March 10 2018
is found here dated December 20 2017.

I'd estimated around 50 of Jacki's pages are on this site. And I think they are just automatically being copied from the RSS feed. There's no attempt made to re-word the content to fit into the new site.

But Jacki's site is not the only site where I've seen this happening. It's just an example. It tends to happen to sites that are older, and well-established with a name in their niche. As they say "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery". So, when people copy you, it tends to say that you've got something worth copying. And that they would rather use your content than write their own.

But the fact that this looks automatic is troubling. I've asked myself some questions, but without coming to any firm answers.

One of the questions is how does Google know which version came first. If the copy is coming straight from the RSS feed, then it could be published by both sites, before Google has crawled either page. And what happens when you make changes and then send it out to your blog feed again? To the visitor, the copied version then looks older than your new altered version. The engines however, read the date in the feed or in the sitemap.

I would guess though that Google can see that both sets of links are pointing to the same site, ie drought-smart-plants. That should be enough to tell Google where the original content is.

What I’d suggest next is to publish another page to the RSS feed, and then see how long it takes to reappear on the other site. Then you can be certain that the RSS feed is being used in this way. That gives you a chance to prepare some evidence to back up your copyright claim, like saving a copy to the way back machine first.

I've been pondering this for a while now, but without coming to any conclusions as to how to deal with it, one way or the other. But I thought it was worth raising for some discussion in this thread.

#1394365 by Jacki from Macleod
Wed Mar 14, 2018 11:57 pm
Will from Los Ojos wrote: These days, I'm coming to the conclusion that bad guys are using it to copy complete pages from a site.
The seattle rockeries site is the least of my worries. It definitely makes the point to have at least a couple of internal links somewhere in each page so that you have a way to find the scrapers. I really don't look for scrapers any more. That way lies madness. It's too bad that they have so little of their own knowledge to write their own pages.
#1394367 by Brenda from My Kitchen
Thu Mar 15, 2018 12:12 am
I understand the problem and understand the concern. Since other people can have an effect by linking to you, it seems they can do damage in various ways. As a solopreneur with so much to do and so much to manage, having an easy way to handle this would be valuable.

What I don't understand is the tech of it. Is it possible to know who's signing up and block certain people from your feed? That way, they wouldn't have such a lazy-easy way of monitoring your site, showing up right after a new page is published and doing their little tricks.

A way of defending yourself by removing or blocking certain people seems like it would provide a lot of peace of mind. And if it takes work for them to pull off their tactics, they would likely stop and go elsewhere.

If this kind of thing is at all widespread, peace of mind could be an additional selling feature for SiteSell, too.

My two cents.

#1394368 by Brenda from My Kitchen
Thu Mar 15, 2018 12:18 am
Re-reading Will's post, if it is done automatically, is there a way to determine bots? And or detecting known bots?

I know with spam referrers, the bots are known.

Having a way to block them up front and then new troublemakers as they arise would be great.

I have no idea, technically, what this would require, though.

#1394371 by Will from Los Ojos
Thu Mar 15, 2018 12:56 am
Jacki from Macleod wrote:FYI, I sent an email to the address on the site that had copied my pages, and as you would expect, in their response they blamed it on their webmaster. So we'll see what happens with it.

It is difficult to know what to do about this. I checked seattle rockeries out, and it has over 3,000 pages. I checked a couple out, and they were scraped content as well. I suspect most of the site is other people's content. And yet at the same time, it looks like a real world landscaping business. It's weird. But, as you said, every internal link points back to your site, not to other pages on their site, so Google has got lots of pointers towards the original content.

But RSS feed seems very vulnerable, and as time goes on, the automation will only get better. What with AI bots and all. The question is - what are the options. Does anyone have any sense of numbers of real world people that use an RSS feed reader? I use mine regularly, but I suspect I'm in the minority.
#1394372 by Mary from Mico
Thu Mar 15, 2018 1:09 am
Hi Will,

Thank you for your notes here. I might be in the majority as I've not figured how to use RSS ever since Google Reader went down.

It would be so great if SBI could form some surety for this. If you start a wish list I'll support it. Please place the link here.

#1394373 by Brenda from My Kitchen
Thu Mar 15, 2018 1:14 am
If it helps, I am not up on RSS since back in the day when Google Reader went down. Since then, I've moved away from it so don't know how many people use it, nor do I know the current status of the technology. I never hear anyone talking about it anymore, but I'm not looking for it, either.

Prior to the Google Reader shutdown, I was a huge RSS user. I may not be representative, though.
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