My ad was cloned - an rare happy ending

11 Replies

This has probably happened to many of us, my advertising text for a property was cloned nearly word-for-word by a local investor in one of his ads for a rental property.   

Usually, we can't do anything about it except rattle a saber as recourse is too costly.

But in this case, the offending party happened to be a college professor from a local university, and plagiarism in publishing is a very big (and possibly careering ending) deal. After pointing that out to him and implying that I would report him to his university the text copy was gone in minutes.....

2 comments:

1 - Why would anyone copy something exact when you can change a few words here and there, have the same meaning, and it would have been fine?

2 - Why is it such a big deal for you?

I've had it happen to me before too.  I never thought anything of it...except for a few laughs based on my comment number 1.

Stealing advertising text is pretty lazy. This isn't exactly Shakespeare-level writing we're talking about.

I have had people steal photos quite often. I've always had success with contacting them directly, explaining ownership and copyright law, and demanding removal.

Interesting.  Can't say I have ever noticed that someone has taken our ad copy word for word.  I have had people take other content word for word and use it as their own and that is of course frustrating and we have pursued it a couple of times.

We have also have had people lift full listings, photos and all and try to rent our houses as a scam.  I think it is good you put a stop to it.  Stealing is never okay.  

You wouldn't believe how many times I have posted original ideas here on BiggerPocket and seen people copy them for blog articles. Education and profession doesn't mean you have ethics. The Pasteur at our old church got forced to resign for plagiarizing sermons from an online church. He is just being moved to a different church...

People are lazy and looking for a hack/shortcut, which is often actually just stealing or cheating. They think copying someone else is a creative solution.

Some Professors are very lazy. They work very little for high pay and they repeat the same thing over and over for years. They are protected from losing their job with tenure, so reporting them would do nothing. I would have posted the theft on social media and let people repost. It is good to raise awareness of this issue.

You do have my curiosity peaked about this amazing advertising copy. Can you post it for us to copy enjoy.

@Joe Splitrock not amazing text at all, pretty routine actually. Just some text about location of the property, community access, local housing/zoning rules and our lease terms. A new ad popped up on Z and was surprised to see our text word-for-word in it.

Originally posted by @Joe Villeneuve :
Originally posted by @Rick Bassett:

1 - Don't know the 'why' and don't care. 

2- I don't appreciate having my work stolen from me...do you?

Your answer to number two tells me your answer for number one is wrong.

@Joe Villeneuve Your response tells me that this is a bigger deal for you than it is for me. It also reminds me why I took a break from participating/contributing to these forums. 

 

I've had my entire listings for rentals cloned and advertised at a significantly lower price as scams and I originally thought that is what the post was referencing. There have been literally millions of real estate ads for sales and rentals posted over the years and I highly doubt the copy in the listing mentioned was entirely unique. Not sure why this is an issue if it was referring to a different property.

Originally posted by @Rick Bassett :
Originally posted by @Joe Villeneuve:
Originally posted by @Rick Bassett:

1 - Don't know the 'why' and don't care. 

2- I don't appreciate having my work stolen from me...do you?

Your answer to number two tells me your answer for number one is wrong.

@Joe Villeneuve Your response tells me that this is a bigger deal for you than it is for me. It also reminds me why I took a break from participating/contributing to these forums. 

 

Let me get this straight. You post a complaint about someone stealing an ad text, and making a big enough deal out of it to report the offending person to their employer. I mention how I don't think it's that big enough of problem since it happens all the time. Look at any listing in the MLS and tell me what you just described as a "big deal" isn't there...many times over. When there's a listing text that works, it's used over and over.

I'm not the one making the complaint.  I'm the one that is saying all of this isn't that big of a deal.

When you have someone steal house plans from a jobsite, and try to use them to build the same house down the street (actually happened to me), then we'll talk.  Somehow, I wouldn't ever describe writing an ad copy as anything that compares.  This isn't the "great American novel" we're talking about...or is it?  How long was this ad?  More than 15, 20 words?