I try to read everything about blogging and edublogging that I can find. I have RSS feeds set up to try and catch everything on the Web and read up on it and share with others via this blog.

This evening, I came across a tweet from Danielle Sales that read:

How Do You Feel When Someone Copies and Pastes Your Post? | The Edublogger http://bit.ly/am2tpX

Oh! This was directly in line with one of my areas of interest, so I clicked to read more. What I found was a blog post by Sue Waters entitled How Do You Feel When Someone Copies and Pastes Your Post? And immediately I started reading, ready to agree with everything that Sue Waters wrote. She started with:

It’s really great to love someone else work!

But you can’t copy and paste large sections or complete articles from other bloggers posts directly into posts on your blog or website.

You don’t do it for a few reasons.

I agreed! I even remember having quoted her a few days back on an Amplify post and really appreciating what it is that she had to say.

And as I read on, it hit me. I was guilty of this very thing, inadvertently that is. Here is the comment I posted in response to Sue’s post which explains what happened:

Mea culpa.

Sue — I recently quoted one of your posts in one of my posts. It was a post that appeared on my blog via a clipping I made using Amplify.com. As you may or may not know, Amplify is a service that allows users to do Web clippings and then comment on them and there is an option to have that sent to one’s WordPress blog. Here is the clip in question: http://bit.ly/bAxkrN

Now normally, when I write a blog post from scratch in WordPress quoting someone’s post and adding a remark or reflection to it, I only quote a small, necessary portion. And I *always* reference the author with a link and the proper quote indication. I had a bad experience a few years back of someone reposting my blog posts on my other blog and *not* quoting me (http://technogenii.net/?p=179) so believe me, I would never put someone through that.

With Amplify, it’s a whole other ball game. One highlights a section of a Webpage or blog post or any other Web document to *Amplify* and share with others. But your post made me think twice about the whole issue. I realised that by *Amplifying your post*, the end result was that a large portion or your post was *quoted*. In addition, Amplify recently made available a plug-in that allows us to repost our Amplified Clips to WordPress or Blogger blogs, which I realise now, decontextualises the information even further.

When reflecting on your above post, the thing that struck me was that had this been a regular blog post, I would have never taken so much of your post as a quote as it would not have been considered fair use. I’ve been blogging for a while now and even wrote a book about Edublogging where I discuss these very issues. But using a clipping tool had me looking at things from a very different perspective.

Since I read this post, I went back on my blog where the Amplify post was reposted and scaled back considerably the amount that was quoted (http://edublogging.com/?p=319). The Amplify clip will remain the same as it really is like clipping a newspaper and adding a comment. But I’m seriously considering turning off my feed from Amplify to my blogs because I’ve just had a huge realization about this whole process.

I really want to thank you for posting the above and have me reflect further on my own social media practices. That said, I also want to offer an apology because even though my intentions were honourable, I realise the result might have been less than pleasant for you. But from this error has come some really profound reflection which I hope will only contribute to this discussion.


I’ve since revised some of my other entries that were fed in via Amplify and made some modifications. I do insist on mentioning that Amplify is a fantastic tool for clipping Web articles and commenting on them. Where it gets tricky is in the rebroadcasting of this on other sites where the *clipping* isn’t as evident.

With all this reposting, retweeting, cliping and crossposting, we need to take a moment and reflect on our blogging and edublogging practices and make sure they are in line with ethical practices. The line often far too easy to inadvertently cross.


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