Thursday, August 27, 2009 Stealing Genealogy Blog Content

A heads up and warning to other genealogy bloggers: a site called Your Family Tree Now which appears to be a blog post aggregator may be violating your copyright.

An example: On August 10, 2009, I posted the article Twitter and Genealogy Conferences here at Destination: Austin Family. That same day, Your Family Tree Now posted a portion of the same article with the same title under an author named "Genealogy."

The consolidated post (the first three lines) on the front page of the blog does not link to my original post nor am I credited with it. And given that the blog is rife with advertising, it appears to violate my Creative Commons License which specifies not-for-profit use only.

Here is a copy of the cease and desist email which I have sent to the site owner:

To The Owner of

This is to advise you that you are using copyrighted and protected material on your website/blog. Your illegal use of an article entitled Twitter and Genealogy Conferences” at is copied from my recent article “Twitter and Genealogy Conferences” at published at my blog Destination: Austin Family.

What makes your theft so blatant is not only the lack of attribution or link back to the original post, but that you use an author named Genealogy for the article.

This is original content and I am the author and copyright holder. Use of copyright protected material without permission is illegal under copyright laws.

Please take one or more of the following actions immediately:

• Provide compensation for use of my copyright protected material of $1000.00 USD for each article paid via PayPal.

• Remove the plagiarized material immediately.

I expect a response within 5 days to this issue. Thank you for your immediate action on this matter.

Other genealogy blog owners may want to check out Your Family Tree Now to see if their content has been improperly used and lacks attribution.

© 2009, copyright Thomas MacEntee


Ginger Smith said...

Hi Thomas, I was wondering about that because I saw two instances of what seemed like very similar content come up when I was searching for something. I will defintely check this out!

Joan said...

Hi Thomas,
Good article and one that made me go look at a pingback I got recently on my genealogy blog. It is a different website from the one you mention (the one that is pinging back to my site sells government records) but they are doing the same thing - using other people's blog feeds to populate their page.

Sean Sexton said...

Inexcusable.. And definitely a copyright violation. Any response from your cease and desist?