Copied my website content


Ampere

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So I did a little Googling and found that 3 other electrician around the country have plagiarized my content. They are all far out of my service area, so it's not competition for me.

I was told that this will not hurt my rankings as a local service area business, and that is what I would like to confirm with the experts here. Is that correct?

On that same note, if it doesn't hurt me, does it help them? Is it really so easy that they can copy text, change out their company and city name, and paste it into their website and rank normally?
 

Colan Nielsen

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Hey @Ampere It's possible to report this to Google but it typically depends on a couple things. You need to be able to show that the content was on your site first. And the content needs to be copyrighted.

You can submit the report via your Search Console dashboard here - Google Search Console

We've had success with this tactic in the past.
 

Phil Rozek

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@Ampere, though those guys' plagiarism won't hurt your rankings, it's possible that will change if (1) they copy content of yours that isn't geared toward locals (e.g. some original research you do as link-bait), if (2) your local competitors start piling on, or if (3) your non-local competitors eventually pitch a tent in your city.

I've had success in doing DMCA takedowns for one of my clients. You have to contact the hosting company of the infringing site (just do a Whois lookup). Go to the host's site and look for an area called "report a copyright infringement," or something like that. You'll have to put together a little evidence, and send in a letter. About an hour of work, in my experience. The host is usually pretty swift, though.
 

Tim Colling

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@Phil Rozek's advice is right on. It takes a little work but it's a lot more likely that a hosting company will pay attention, because they potentially face significant legal penalties if they do not. It's a lot harder to believe that Google would do anything about it. I would be astonished if they do.
 

Phil Rozek

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What @Tim Colling said. The hosting company has more exposed flesh than Google does when one of its customers infringes on someone else's IP. Google's reaction would be slow at best. Probably still worth alerting Google, though, as Colan suggested. Belt n' suspenders.
 

Colan Nielsen

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Using the form that I linked to in my OP to we currently have 100% success rate with. However we've only tested this out once :)

it was extremely effective because Google literally removed the competitors content that we reported.
 

JoshuaMackens

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So I did a little Googling and found that 3 other electrician around the country have plagiarized my content. They are all far out of my service area, so it's not competition for me.

I was told that this will not hurt my rankings as a local service area business, and that is what I would like to confirm with the experts here. Is that correct?

On that same note, if it doesn't hurt me, does it help them? Is it really so easy that they can copy text, change out their company and city name, and paste it into their website and rank normally?
I've seen significant (for me at least) personal anecdotal evidence that leads me to believe copied content is going to hurt your site. With that being said, if you had the content first, you should be good.

When you do a search for your content in Google who comes up first? You or other websites?

Also, you could just contact these other local businesses directly and let them know you know what's going on. They may change it quicker than a hosting company will.

How long have you guys found DMCA actions take?
 

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