One Writer’s Journey

December 10, 2013

Google Yourself: Why You Should Periodically Search for Your Name

Filed under: Uncategorized — suebe @ 1:37 am
Tags: , , ,

GoogleAbout a week ago, a writer friend Googled her name.  This wasn’t a vanity issue, just to see who was talking about her and her work.  She was checking to see if someone was using her work without permission.  Any writer, illustrator or photographer should periodically Google their name to see if someone has “picked up” their work for free.

My friend found a variety of her educational pieces available in full from people who had not paid to distribute her work.

Googling your name is especially important if you publish on-line.  This is because many people who have blogs think that if they see something on their computer or i-phone screen, the content is theirs.  They can do anything that they want with it.  This often includes putting it up, in-full, on a website or blog.

If someone uses your work without permission, you need to contact them and explain that without permission, and a fee, your work is not available.  Some people honestly don’t understand that they’ve done anything wrong.  If you explain it, they take it down.

Other people may argue a bit, but then they take it down.  By confronting them even politely, you are pointing out that they are stealing your work.  They may protest their innocence.  They may tell you that if you put it out there, you must have meant for other people to take it. If this happens, remember to be polite and professional.  Patiently restate your case.   Demand that they take your work down.  Remember:  Polite and professional.

If they still resist, send them an invoice.  I know of one writer who has had to go this far several times.  Yet, every time she sends an invoice, they take down her work.

Personally, I’ve never had anyone take my work without permission.  I’m not sure if I’m blessed or if I should feel a little insulted.  (Wait a minute!  You mean my work isn’t good enough for you!)  Periodic searches show my work only in the places that I expect to find it.

Why not Google your name right now and make sure your work is still your own?

–SueBE

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