Saturday, October 25, 2008

foodbuzz: using my blog content without permission [updated]

let me provide some background.

on september 22, 2008 i was contacted by foodbuzz. they sent me an email indicating that a "friend" had told them i was interested in their publisher program. my response was if they could tell me which "friend" this was it would be much appreciated as i had expressed no such interest. then foodbuzz responded by indicating they were mistaken and that one of their program participants had recommended that they contact me. i let them know that i wasn't interested in joining and would prefer to be independent without any affiliations at this time. i sent that email on september 24, 2008.

i think was pretty clear...polite...but clear. i'm not feeling so polite at the moment. yes, i know that there are quite a few prominent food bloggers that are affiliated with foodbuzz. i choose not to be affiliated. i like having a choice. i don't like that choice being taken away from me.

how was this choice taken away from me?

today, i find out that foodbuzz has created a "profile" of my blog. it appears that they have links to 36 of my postings. the first posting they link to was a posting created on september 24th. interesting that this was created on the day that i said i wasn't interested. hmmmm. then at the top of the profile of my blog it reads that i am not a registered member but that they have created this profile anyway.
there is also a big ad from one of their sponsors on this page. of course there is an ad. (i also took a screen shot of this for my records). as the "profile" of my blog has links to several of my postings..... when you click on one of the links.... it opens up my blog in a foodbuzz "frame". this allows them to affiliate their brand with my blog. essentially, from my perspective, they are using my content without my permission. they are also obtaining revenue from this....as evident from the ad... so in a sense, they are using my blog to make money.

even when i told them i my preference is to be independent and ad-free.

nice. really nice.

is this an attempt at wiggling around obtaining permission to use an author's content? sigh. all of this....despite my prominently displayed "all rights reserved" on the blog. interesting how i clearly and directly expressed that i did not want to be affiliated...yet they found a way to do so anyway. i find this quite disrespectful and perhaps, violates authors rights....in this case, my rights as an author. remember dear hearts, i did work as an editor in the content business for a number of years. using content without proper permissions in place is a sore issue in the content business.

now dear hearts, how would you feel if someone did this to you? i had used a similar argument about boorah...but the same applies to foodbuzz. how would they feel if another site used their content? how would they feel if another site put their own branding with their own site without permission? i doubt foodbuzz would be too happy as their brand is their business. i bet they are pretty sensitive about their brand. just as i am pretty sensitive about my blog.

i have sent them a note asking them to remove the profile of my blog.

we'll see what happens.

*****updated: they took the profile down and see it as perfectly legal. i still don't like opening up content in their frame concept and i know i'm not the only one. for more info see here.***

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