Did You Receive An Email From AncestryBlogs.com?

ancestryblogs.com unsolicited email

Several members of GeneaBloggers have reported the following: they have received an unsolicited email from a new site called AncestryBlogs.com letting them know that their blog is now listed at the AncestryBlogs.com site. I too have received the email via MailChimp and here are my concerns along with an action plan for members of GeneaBloggers who want to stop receiving the emails and to have their blog removed.

Concerns

While I welcome any site that thinks they can even replicate the sense of community here at GeneaBloggers, let alone maintain a curated list of genealogy blogs (and yes, I know it is a bit of bravado talking . . .), here are my concerns with the email and the site:

  • The email received via MailChimp states “You are receiving this email because your blog is part of AncestryBlogs.com.” I never signed up to be part of AncestryBlogs.com and GeneaBloggers was listed there without my permission.
  • Yes AncestryBlogs.com is using the RSS feed for GeneaBloggers and yes they are linking back to the original posts, but still I have the right to control my content, even if you are using just the “first three lines” – you don’t get a Fair Use free pass for that. GeneaBloggers has successfully made this argument before (see our smackdown of Ancestors and Kin here) even when some sites claim to argue that the technology behind RSS allows anyone re-use of content as they see fit.
  • I don’t know what AncestryBlogs.com will be doing with the aggregated feeds in the future especially when it comes to inserting advertising etc. and this concerns me.

So I’m not willing to have my blog listed nor will I allow unsolicited emails to be sent to me by AncestryBlogs.com.

Action Plan

Here is what I intend to do and I urge members of GeneaBloggers to do the same if they did not sign up for emails from AncestryBlogs.com or sign up to be listed at the site and they want to have their content removed:

  • File an abuse complaint at MailChimp at http://mailchimp.com/contact/abuse/. The MailChimp Campaign ID for the email received is mailchimp465aa3faa368b59f7242a4313.36c28714b1.
  • Then click the Unsubscribe link in the email from AncestryBlogs.com.

Conclusion

Finally, one issue that really perturbs me is that when I posted information about AncestryBlogs.com on social media, many assumed there was an affiliation with Ancestry.com.  In my opinion, this is an attempt to confuse consumers and to dilute the Ancestry brand and trademark.

This has been quite the week for the genealogy blogging community in terms of having our content used in a variety of methods, mostly done without permission.  Whether it is someone stealing content and posting on Pinterest, or using a WordPress plugin to scrape blog posts, you as a blogger still have the right to control your content that you worked hard to produce.

GeneaBloggers will always fight the good fight to protect genealogy blogger content and the control of that content.  Yes there is room at the table for new vendors and players in the genealogy community, but there’s a right way and a wrong way of “playing.”

©2013, copyright Thomas MacEntee

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Splog Alert – Monkey In My Tree

Stop Content Theft

[UPDATE: The content in question from Monkey In My Tree has been removed as of 8:15 am Central time today and was blamed on a WordPress plugin which took the content from various feeds.]

Sploggers still don’t get it.  I don’t care if WordPress or another blog gives you neat plugins to “repurpose” content from other blogs.  Posting content from GeneaBloggers at your own blog without express permission from me is THEFT.

Thanks to Google Alerts and the use of pingbacks on all my blogs, I realized my content was being stolen by Monkey In My Tree (http://www.monkeyinmytree.com/).  The main section is at http://www.monkeyinmytree.com/recommend/ where most content has been posted. Here’s the story:

Offender: monkeyinmytree.com

The latest violator – a site called Monkey In My Tree (http://www.monkeyinmytree.com/) which is registered to a Melanie Reeve.  Here is the email I just sent to her:

Hello Melanie Reeve

I am the owner of GeneaBloggers.com and today I found that recent blog posts have been used at the Monkey In My Tree (http://www.monkeyinmytree.com) which, according to the WHOIS record, is owned by you, Melanie Reeve:

Registered through: GoDaddy.com, LLC (http://www.godaddy.com)

Domain Name: MONKEYINMYTREE.COM
Created on: 01-May-13
Expires on: 01-May-14
Last Updated on: 04-May-13
Registrant: Melanie Reeve
2111 Singletree Ave
Austin, Texas 78727
United States

Administrative Contact: Reeve, Melanie
m.l.reeve1982@gmAIL.com
2111 Singletree Ave
Austin, Texas 78727
United States
5123735195

Technical Contact: Reeve, Melanie
m.l.reeve1982@gmAIL.com
2111 Singletree Ave
Austin, Texas 78727
United States
5123735195

Domain servers in listed order:

NS1.MONKEYINMYTREE.COM
NS2.MONKEYINMYTREE.COM

The posts in question are:

http://www.monkeyinmytree.com/may-i-introduce-to-you-andrew-martin/
http://www.monkeyinmytree.com/genealogy-blogging-beat-monday-may-27-2013/
http://www.monkeyinmytree.com/memorial-day-2013/

I am formally requesting that you immediately remove these posts from your site on the basis that they violate the copyright on my intellectual property. You have stolen my content without my permission. Your use of GeneaBloggers content does not fall within the Fair Use doctrine of US Copyright laws.

Please remove all GeneaBloggers content immediately and no later than 5:00 pm Central Daylight Time, Thursday, May 30, 2013 and email confirmation to me at geneabloggers@gmail.com once content is removed. You may also reimburse me at the rate of $500 per article if you choose. Either way, please let me know which option you choose.

If content is not removed by 5:00 pm Central Daylight Time, Thursday, May 30, 2013, I will pursue all legal remedies including filing a DMCA complaint with Google and with your Internet service provider, Host Gator.

Finally, I am notifying many of my colleagues in the genealogy industry from whom you’ve also misappropriated content.  Given your ability to set up channels and advertising, I don’t believe your act of theft is an innocent one.  I will alert my community of over 3,000 genealogy bloggers via blog post at GeneaBloggers and have them check your site for their own content. GeneaBloggers has a long history of representing its members in the fight against splogs and content theft – please see http://www.geneabloggers.com/tag/content-theft/ for past occasions where we have successfully won each and every case of content theft.

Please email me if you have any questions.

The Offense

monkeyinmytree.com is stealing content from genealogy bloggers.  It is copying entire posts although it is linking back to the original post. The main section is at http://www.monkeyinmytree.com/recommend/ where most content has been posted. In addition, the site appears to be making a profit from affiliate advertising, Google AdSense, links, etc.

What Can You Do?

Contact Melanie Reeve at m.l.reeve1982@gmAIL.com using the WHOIS information listed above. Also post a comment in the posts. Use a cease and desist notice and tell her that your original content is being used and your copyright violated.

Insist that she remove your content or you will contact monkeyinmytree.com’s web hosting company (Host Gator) and file a DMCA complaint. Click here to access Host Gator’s hard-to-find online complaint form.

I also recommend, if possible, that you post at the comments for each post using your content and link back to this post.  At the very least, they’ve been “called out” here at GeneaBloggers and this info will show up in Google search results.

Conclusion

All readers of GeneaBloggers know – as do our members – that it isn’t playing fair when you have to steal content from others who have worked so hard to document their genealogy journey.

Don’t forget our resource page on Blog Copyright and Content Theft!

GeneaBloggers will always fight the good fight against opportunists who want to ride the current wave of popularity surrounding family history and only take from our community without giving back.

© 2013, copyright Thomas MacEntee

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Splog Alert – genealogywebsite.info

Stop Content Theft

They’re back! It appears to be the same person or group as our other violators! Again, they are stealing content from GeneaBloggers.com as well as other genealogy blogs.  Each time, they use a different name, a new domain, the same hosting company but is stupid enough to use the same template and graphics.  Still, they don’t learn . ..

If you remember, we’ve had to battle this person who used to run thegenealogy.ingo, genealogyplace.info, and  genealogygen.com.  The sites are almost identical in their look, content and their spamminess.

Thanks to Google Alerts and the use of pingbacks on all my blogs, I realized my content was being stolen.  Here’s the story:

Offender: genealogywebsite.info

The latest violator – a site called genealogywebsite.info  (http://genealogywebsite.info) which is registered to a Victor Pow.  Here is the email I just sent to him:

Hello Victor Pow

I am the owner of GeneaBloggers.com and via Google Alerts today I found that my recent blog posts have been used at the genealogywebsite.info website which, according to the WHOIS record, is owned by you, Victor Pow:

Domain ID:D44188379-LRMS
Domain Name:GENEALOGYWEBSITE.INFO
Created On:21-Nov-2011 15:18:37 UTC
Last Updated On:20-Jan-2012 20:39:18 UTC
Expiration Date:21-Nov-2012 15:18:37 UTC
Sponsoring Registrar:eNom, Inc. (R126-LRMS)
Status:CLIENT TRANSFER PROHIBITED
Registrant ID:7fd7ac668e3d9ef7
Registrant Name:Victor Pow
Registrant Organization:
Registrant Street1:Blk 56 #07-169
Registrant Street2:
Registrant Street3:
Registrant City:Singapore
Registrant State/Province:Singapore
Registrant Postal Code:100056
Registrant Country:SG
Registrant Phone:+65.96567116
Registrant Phone Ext.:
Registrant FAX:
Registrant FAX Ext.:
Registrant Email:vpkc@hotmail.com

The post in question is: http://genealogywebsite.info/new-genealogy-blogs-september-8-2012-geneabloggers

I am formally requesting that you immediately remove these posts from your site on the basis that they violate the copyright on my intellectual property. You have stolen my content without my permission. Your use of GeneaBloggers content does not fall within the Fair Use doctrine of US Copyright laws. In addition, you are using your own name as author on all of these articles giving the impression that this is your content.

Please remove all GeneaBloggers content immediately and no later than 5:00 pm Central Daylight Time, Friday, October 12, 2012 and email confirmation to me at geneabloggers@gmail.com once content is removed. You may also reimburse me at the rate of $500 per article if you choose. Either way, please let me know which option you choose.

If content is not removed by 5:00 pm Central Daylight Time, Friday, October 12, 2012, I will pursue all legal remedies including filing a DMCA complaint with Google and with your Internet service provider, Host Gator.

Finally, I am notifying many of my colleagues in the genealogy industry from whom you’ve also misappropriated content.  Since such theft on your site is so pervasive, I will most likely need to alert my community of over 2,800 genealogy bloggers via blog post at GeneaBloggers and have them check your site for their own content. GeneaBloggers has a long history of representing its members in the fight against splogs and content theft – please see http://www.geneabloggers.com/tag/content-theft/ for past occasions where we have successfully won each and every case of content theft.

Please email me if you have any questions.

The Offense

genealogywebsite.info is stealing content from genealogy bloggers.  It is copying entire posts and it not linking back to the original post.  In addition, the site appears to be making a profit from affiliate advertising, Google AdSense, links, etc.

What Can You Do?

Contact Victor Pow at vpkc@hotmail.com using the WHOIS information listed above. Use a cease and desist notice and tell him that your original content is being used and your copyright violated.

Insist that he remove your content or you will contact genealogywebsite.info’s web hosting company (Host Gator) and file a DMCA complaint. Click here to access Host Gator’s hard-to-find online complaint form.

I also recommend, if possible, that you post at the comments for each post using your content and link back to this post.  At the very least, they’ve been “called out” here at GeneaBloggers and this info will show up in Google search results.

Conclusion

All readers of GeneaBloggers know – as do our members – that it isn’t playing fair when you have to steal content from others who have worked so hard to document their genealogy journey.

Don’t forget our resource page on Blog Copyright and Content Theft!

GeneaBloggers will always fight the good fight against opportunists who want to ride the current wave of popularity surrounding family history and only take from our community without giving back.

© 2012, copyright Thomas MacEntee

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