SO MUCH NON-STOP CRAZY EXCITEMENT
The Subject, She Is Changed

To Whom It May Concern

Or, Hey Girl, I Heard You Were Blogging My Blogs On Your Blog, And Then Again On A Blog That Paid You To Blog, But You Were Blogging My Blogs And Not Your Blogs, In Other Words Stealing Stuff I Wrote Which I Am Pretty Sure Is Not Cool, Girl

Or, Choice Excerpts From The Most Fun Email I Have Ever Had The Honor Of Writing

Dear You,

Well. It's unfortunate that we had to be introduced under these circumstances. Before I go any further, allow me to tell you a little about myself. I think some of this may be relevant in a bit.

Like you, I married very young -- I was 20 years old at my wedding. Couldn't even drink the champagne! I put myself through college a course or two at a time, while working full-time, until I finally got my degree when I was 27 years old. I started my blog in 2003, when I was 26. I was hired as a columnist for AlphaMom -- my first "real" professional writing gig, when I was 28, right after having my first baby. Holy crap, was that ever a dream come true.

Like you, I have three children now: Noah, Ezra and Baby Ike, who was just born last June. When I was six months pregnant with him, my father died of cancer. I don't mention this to play the Pain Olympics or anything, but since you seem to be bringing up your pregnancy as a sympathy ploy, I do want to say that I DO sympathize with what I'm assuming is your current stress level over this mess.The universe has shitty timing sometimes, and it sucks.

The writing you stole was written about my second pregnancy. It is all very near and dear to me, and I am fiercely protective of it, as I'm sure you understand. What you did was like someone swiping your belly pics and passing them off as their own: creepy, invasive and wrong. I imagine if that happened to you, you would waste no time in leading an Internet charge against that person, no matter what excuses they offered.

So on that note, let's break yours down:

"I started writing a long time ago, when I was young and did first start under not knowing the proper rules. I have no real education in writing and never claimed I did, I just liked to share my feelings and my life with my friends and family."

You use your youth as an excuse a lot. And lack of formal education. However, plagiarism -- passing someone's work off as your own -- is something that most of us learn by the time we turn in our first book report in elementary school. My kindergartner knows that stealing is wrong and that it's important to do your own work. So...sorry. I will not accept that one.

Also, this was happening in 2009. Three years ago. While I don't know the full history of your blog, a quick glance through your pregnancy archive reveals that you were already pretty established -- established enough for your entries to garner double-digit comments and for brands to be approaching you with sponsorship deals and free nursery furniture. Free nursery furniture! That's impressive! Even I've never managed that one. Clearly, despite your youth and educational background you hit the ground running as a pretty savvy blogger who knew how to network and promote yourself.

Which is why I do not buy that you did not understand "the rules." Linking. Quotation marks. That little fancy blockquote button thingie.

And barring that, when your commenters chimed in saying stuff like "LOL YOU'RE SO FUNNY" and specifically calling out jokes and lines THAT YOU DID NOT WRITE, you could have stepped in and say, "Whoops, sorry guys! That line came from this post. I should've linked to it, because I really like it!" 

"I have been recently told that I have plagiarized your whole articles, and never intended to steal anything. I took some great lines and did not cite them, which was a big mistake. I am now just 27 and learning everyday as I grow how to avoid these mistakes in the future. I never meant to hurt anyone or steal from anyone."

Seriously? You needed to be told that you did not actually write the words you published? You did not intend to steal when you plagiarized me week after week, in a variety of different ways? You're going with "I didn't cite properly?" Sometimes you reworded my jokes. Sometimes you took just a line or two and flushed it out with your own writing. Sometimes you just copy-and-pasted the entire thing, whole paragraphs at a time. Once you found out your baby was a girl and mine was a boy, you changed the pronouns and left everything else. This is behavior you know not to do by middle school, if not earlier. The fact that it was on the Internet doesn't mean the rules were any different, and I think you knew that. I think you simply figured you weren't going to ever get caught.

And again, stop with the "I am only 27" thing. It's insulting to people younger than you who absolutely know how to not steal other people's writing.

"I have been going through my blog all day long and publishing my posts and just want to make sure I dont have any other mistakes that will come to haunt me."

I appreciate you taking my writing down. I really do. The thing that still kinda bugs me is that in the end you just took everything down because you claim that you simply can't remember what you wrote...and what I wrote. From three years ago. I am pretty sure someone could put a dozen different articles/blog posts/whatevers in front of me and I could tell you which ones were mine and which ones were not.

"I am 27 years old and have made mistakes. I now feel really bad and almost just want to give up."

Really? You are 27? Huh. Didn't know that. Why do you seem to think 27-year-old women should get a free pass through adulthood? I sense you imagine I am some ancient, over-educated old lady when I'm only a few years older than you with a freaking Bachelor's degree from an commuter/distance-ed college in Communications. At 27 I was a grown-up. And so are you. You are far, far smarter and savvier than you are letting on, or are letting yourself believe.

Read through the emails you have sent to everybody involved in this and count the number of times you bring up your age and being "young" and seriously: Figure out why you do that, and knock it off. It's. Not. An. Excuse.

"I wrote about my pregnancies and never meant to have it backfire in my face. I just wanted to share my joy and I found those lines great, just didnt quite understand the proper rules to citing."

But you didn't technically really write about your pregnancies. You wrote about MY pregnancy. MY joy.

And let's not forget when and where you were ACTUALLY caught plagiarizing: yesterday, three years later, in a paid column at Babble. (Big thanks to alert reader Catherine for the heads' up, by the way.) Presumably, by then, you DID know the rules, yet you posted my words as yours on multiple occasions.

I also write for Babble. Like AlphaMom, I have nothing but wonderful things to say about their editorial guidelines and standards, and the people I work with for who inspire me to write to the very best of my ability. And so I have read the contract you signed. It is very, very clear that you are expected to write your own words, to clearly cite and attribute and link. I'm not entirely sure why you thought it was a good idea to copy-and-paste your own archives as part of a PAYING, PROFESSIONAL JOB, but even assuming that you had cleared that with Babble ahead of time, there's still the little problem that one of the articles you posted there -- the sex & pregnancy one -- was a top to bottom copy/paste job with only a few minor word changes. And I never found that one on your personal blog, and yes, I looked very hard and very carefully. (Which is not being "obsessive-compulsive," by the way -- nice tweet! good call on deleting it, though -- it's called protecting my brand and my writing.)

That's...quite troubling, and negates a lot of your excuses and explanations that you thought you were only technically plagiarizing yourself at Babble. If I am wrong about this, I am sorry, but I still feel like we're splitting hairs here. 2009 vs. 2012. You still stole it, and I cannot honestly believe you're trying to convince me that you simply FORGOT that you didn't actually write a single word of that post.

BTW, you stole an article I wrote about my SEX LIFE. Holy SHIT.

***

Okay, since the rest of your email is pretty much a repetition of your age and how you never "meant" for this to happen, let's move on. I'd like to give you some PR crisis management advice here. From one old, ancient, decrepit blogger to a younger one. Come clean, publicly. Apologize -- to me, Isabel and the folks at Babble -- without any excuses or revisionist half-truths that are easily proven wrong/shady by five minutes in Google Cache or the Wayback Machine. Plagiarism is a big deal, yes, and it is -- often -- a career killer, even for older, educated, established writers/journalists who made one measly little mistake. It's not a question of maturity, but one of integrity.

Yes, I have a very large readership and Twitter following. I sense you didn't know that when you chose my articles to swipe, and I know that you're terrified now of this getting "out" -- I noticed your husband tweeting cryptic messages about sinister Internet stalkers keeping you down, as if he's hoping people will think that's why you were fired from Babble, and play this mess so anyone who dares to say anything is just trying to "ruin" a poor, hard-working 27-years-young (OMG STOPIT) woman. Even though, again, I sense you two would not be nearly so kind to anyone who stole as much as a recipe photo from your blog.

I am not a bully. I am not a mean girl. I have never even engaged in a single Twitter argument with anyone and seriously, Internet drama gives me hives and I avoid it at all costs. I HATE this stuff, really and truly. I have no desire to "ruin" you or send people after you with torches and pitchforks.

However, I am a professional blogger with a brand and a reputation to protect. I am also a person with feelings who writes about those feelings and any and all significant (and insignificant) events in my life on the Internet. You stole -- over and over and over -- MY words, and made money and sponsorships and connections using them. So I will be writing about this today on my blog -- I have every right to, as I'm sure you understand -- and I will NOT be naming you or linking to you or anything.

But this is by no means a get-out-of-Internet-drama-free card. Mostly, I just don't care to send you the traffic. I imagine some people will figure it out. So tread carefully. Don't give the Internet what it wants, which is a drawn-out childish temper tantrum about what counts as stealing and plagiarism and what the definition of "is" is. Own what you did: I stole. I was stupid. I'm embarrassed and I am sorry and hoo boy, I will never, ever do it again. Pledge to earn your readers' trust -- and the trust of the brands and advertisers you attracted using someone else's words -- by giving them nothing but the brutal truth now.

I accept your apology for being very sorry you got caught. I still sense I am owed one for being serially -- and very deliberately -- plagiarized.

Sincerely,

Amy

PS. In the interest of full disclosure and transparency, I should note that some lines have been changed from my original response I sent directly to her, for reasons of timeline clarity or identification purposes.

PPS. And also that my "apology" email contained the following confidentially footer, that I willfully and knowingly ignored while copying-and-pasting her words: This email is intended only for the person(s) or entity to which it is addressed and may contain information that is privileged, confidential, and protected. It is not to be disseminated, distributed, copied, or shared by others. On the plus side, though, I believe I clearly marked her words vs. mine with quotation marks and italics. So. There is that. 

PPPS. OMG THESE POSTSCRIPTS ARE IN ITALICS SO WHO IS TYPING THESE WORDS HOLY CRAP WORMHOLE NOOOOOOO...

Comments

Sara

So I write a blog...more like an online journal because it isn't open to the public (hidden as well as password protected) in which I whine about all the things in which having cancer sucks because oh boy it surely does. And in this private online fuck cancer blog in which I do all this whining for no one to read (you know so all the people in my real life think I'm bionic woman with no negative feelings EVER), I have reposted your words from your fuck cancer posts, for my own easy to find access...but even where the possibility of anyone other than ME finding it is nil, I put "today my friend (hahaha I've been reading your blog FOREVER so yes total friend status) Amy wrote..." I kinda doubt I ever linked back because seriously?? but..et maybe I'll go do that...add it to my "Why must I suffer ridiculously and perhaps DIE when people who are 27 and steal other peoples words because they are 27 and don't know any better yet (only 27 wha wha wha at 27!) effortlessly breathe air?" post...totally gonna link back on that one.

Love ya chicka, for your transparancy through everything. And Yeah I can totally get why she would want to steal your words because girl you rock like she can't even fathom doing...but...shame shame on her.

Carol

Good woman!! Well said.

*Stands and applauds*

Susan

Not to get all "you should sue her ass off" on you, but is there a way to get the Gods of the Internet to shut down her URL? I know she could buy a new one a second later and start blogging again...and even though she admitted copying your words on her site she should still be held culpable. She flat out stole.

Ali

She's 27: old enough to drink, vote, marry, and be charged with plagiarism. Seriously-don't you have some right to the profits she made with YOUR words?

Michael

I am reminded of a little matter concerning the worlds favourite writer of wizarding yarns and her attempts to stop a man with a website publishing a Harry Potter encyclopedia. Vander Ark was his name. He too had copied and pasted a lot of original words, added no real original commentary or content, and was attempting to profit from his deeds. He lost in court. JKR and her agents were protecting her intellectual property and copyright because by NOT taking legal action, they could be deemed to accept that it was okay for anyone to plagiarise in this way. Fair use and all that.

I mention this only because shouldn't you be doing this, taking legal measures to protect your assets? She has physically profited, she was employed to do so, so her employers have profited too. I am no lawyer, but shouldn't you consider seeing one simply because you have to?

Rachel

this is the 2nd case of cryptic tweets via husband that I am reading about in a week -- what is that? crazy! do they have nothing else to do? maybe, just maybe - tell your wife to own up to her huge mistakes.

in any case - boy I am obviously ancient at 37.

jL

If you are savvy enough to try to use your age as an excuse then you are way too old to be using your age for an excuse.

The Slacker Mom

Great post,as always you handled it far better than I would have. It would be nice to think she'd be packin' it all in at this point but me thinks she'll be around for awhile.

Stephanie

I think it stinks that this happens to you, and other funny, talented writers who have put so much time, creativity and LOVE into their work over the years. But, it seems like you handled it with as much patience and kindness as possible. You even tried to HELP her with this advice. The best thing someone can do is say I'M SORRY...and mean it...I think you are spot on! And thanks for sharing it with us in a way that totally cracked me up too...as always!!

Plano Mom

By the last line it sounds like she's still doing her own legal work too. Wonder where she copied that from.

Michelle

I am sorry for what happen to you, and think its awful!!! I did write a comment on her page in her admission of stealing your works post,because really I think the only thing shes sorry for is she got CAUGHT!! This is what I said to her!!!-I don't believe you would have owned up to anything, had you not got CAUGHT!!! That is why you had to come clean. I too believe what you did is wrong, and I think you are sorry you got caught, and really not sorry for what you did:( Sad situation all around. I think you also are fake in all you wrote about and I believe it was your intent was to put this whole front on, and if the truth was known I say you have stolen others writings for gain on your blog! I believe you and your hubby were up to no good, it was all a lie! It was not just the stealing of other works, because I believe there is others you stole from, its the deception, I believe you and your hubby played people, companies, and feed lies to all!!! I believe you are a MASTER munipulator!!!!! Good Day, or in your case the gigs up!!!!

Gemma

I don't blog for a living, but it would never even occur to me to steal someone's words and pass them off as my own. I've always thought my own lame ass post is so much better than passing off someone else's thoughts as my own, no matter how brilliant it may be. Just so wrong.

But, it makes me wonder how many other blogs she's ripped off. You can't be the first--just the first time she's gotten caught.

Julie

Coming out of lurkdom to thank you for all of your original work. You have such a wonderful voice and I can't believe she hasn't been caught before now. Checking out her blog and other communications shows how terrible a writer she is (typos, grammar, spelling, voice.)

Also, Jesus, her site is terrible. How am I supposed to wade through all that commercial propaganda to see any genuine content. Thanks for making your site only about the stuff I want to read about.

Nancy Gould

SO annoying.

it's like when someone does something shitty and then says "I'm really sorry that made you mad."

I don't know who ripped you off but clearly, they suck.

Mermil

When I taught community college, I had three students plagarize a research paper. I was so furious that as I was driving to class, practicing what I was going to say to these little shits,I missed my exit and was half an hour late. There are three things I cannot forgive: plagiarizing, condescension and being a Nazi. You were pretty damn gracious, if you ask me. I would have used way more swear words and then I would have crank called her house, like, fifty times.

supertiff

oh.just,oh. i clicked through some of the comments and was able to see some screen shots, and...wow. i can't for the life of me remember how it happened, how i happened to stumble across this, but yours is the first blog i ever read, way back a little bit before you knew noah was residing in your tummy. you wrote (and still do) in a way that sounded the way that thoughts sound in my own head, which is weird, and i was immediately endeared to you. i blogged myself for a bit...i guess i could be making a living off of it if i would have just stolen your words! anyway, the point is...i hope you don't let stuff like this get you down TOO much, shitty as it is, because i find you inspirational (and i know a lot of other people do, too) and i genuinely look forward to click and see if you've written something new everyday.

^^ holy too much punctuation and lack of capital letters, but you get my meaning.

Heather Ann

I think you should be using an actual name and giving the cold facts of where you were plagiarized. This is a crime, not Internet "drama." It isn't Mommy-blogger "drama" either. It is just illegal. Her name doesn't need to be protected.

RebeccaF.

You don't know me from Adam, but just wanted to say sorry you are having to deal with this and also, great post. You are an awesome person, wife, mom, writer and blogger. Praying for you, girl.

Average Josephine

I saw this, not because I'm a regular reader (although I like your style and will read again) but because of a tweet. All I can say is WTF? Did she seriously think she would get a way with it? I got harassed by a blogger for offering to review the same brand that she had written about! And you don't forget what you write. I've blogged when I was severely depressed and out of my tree on medication and I remember what I wrote. Her excuses do not ring true in the slightest. I hope you get everything settled as it must be horrible to be at the centre of such a horrible incident.

Shandra

Preach it. You go.

katie

Wow, good eye by the reader! I can't remember today is pizza day, never mind anything else. Sorry that had to happen to you. Love reading your blog.

Her Inner Voice

That's insanity. I don't consider myself a writer, just because of my bitty blog, but I'd be crushed tofi dmy words elsewhere. For cash money. Ick. She should be ashamed. Her license to internet should be revoked.

Alicia CP

Duuuuude. I'm sorry you have to put up with this honky-BS. Stealing and lying are BAD, but nothing makes me go into a psycho-PMS-rage like when people don't take ownership of their shit! ADMIT IT! OWN IT!

Exclamation points!!!!

Billie

Makes you wonder what else they are stealing and lying about, doesn't it? The possibilities are endless. CROOKS!

K8

Standing Ovation. Well. Done.

Ruth

Well, I'm 51, so by some people's definitions perhaps I have a license to plagiarize since I'm so freaking "old"?? (Excuse me, I need a head-desk moment ...)

Amy, I'm just de-lurking and piling on (are you actually still reading these?) to let you know that I think you're a total class act. Gracious beyond compare, even.

I do a different type of writing for a living, and intellectual property is kind of a hot button of mine. I don't blame you for not publishing the name of the blogger or her blog - why give the idiot more page hits than she's doubtlessly already getting? - but I agree with others that legal action here is warranted so she cannot continue to steal from other writers for her own profit. Unethical AND stupid - what a charming combination of traits she exemplifies.

Between this and the "I'd rather lose my daughter than my son" debacle from last year, Babble is really skating on some thin ice. Editing and fact-checking, people. Standards, even. You're a professional business, Babble - start acting like one.

You and Katie Allison Granju are totally my non-stalkery girl-crushes. Just sayin'.

JulieD

Wow. Isn't she the cutest little entitled thing. Or not really.

I just love it when people say "I never meant this to happen!" Of course she didn't MEAN for this to happen. What she MEANT to happen was to get people to think she was hilariously funny, and a great writer... when in actuality, She is neither. She IS in fact, a liar and a thief. Sorry, I know that's harsh truth, right there, but it looks like she needs a splash of reality in her life.

Amber Hites

What a piece of work! She is just lucky you have class and didn't throw her under the bus-I would love to email her a piece of my mind. Pathetic.

Carmen Hutchison

That iss ridiculous! I am 18 years old and I have a blog and I have never ever plagiarised anything nor will I ever. I was always taught it at school and its so unbelievably insulting for her to say she is ONLY 27!

kaity

wow. that is disgusting on her part.

i'm 25 - and wow, what an idiot.

Erin

I find it hilarious that the lone word here and there that she replaced (I'M REPLACING WORDS SO IT'S NOT PLAGIARISM...oooookkkk....) were horribly misspelled or misused. She is clearly an idiot.

Ginny

That just sucks. Freaking unbelievable. So sorry it happened, but so very glad she got caught.

Katherine

Wait! So does that mean because I am 24 I can freely plagiarize/steal/hijack other people's blogs and have it be totally fine? And get paid for it?? Until I'm 27?? EXCELLENT.
/end sarcasm
We were taught in preschool that theft is bad, and we were taught in elementary school that copying other people's words was a form of theft and that too was bad.
Amy, you seriously took the high road, and kudos to you for the maturity, integrity, and poise with which you handled this.
That blogger shouldn't be given an inch of sympathy--it's been hard enough to get the world to treat blogs/Internet writing as a legitimate craft with rules and integrity like print writing. People like this blogger undermine the whole thing and that is not okay.
*getting off my soapbox now*

Melodie

Liars and thieves... hate them. Happy you kicked her ass, publicly, on your blog - because she needed to be taken down a notch or two.

Melodie

Also, I would pay BIG MONEY to be at Blogher this year! hahahahaaa

Kate

Have you spoken to an Intellectual Property attorney? You may want to discuss this with someone well versed in copyright law.

Jan

Holy awesomesauce badass

katie

First of all, UGH I'm so sorry Amy. Second, the only thing I think she is sorry about is getting caught.

Also, if I had known that being 27 was such a great excuse, I'd like to take a trip in that way(WAY)back machine to abuse it daily. Lord knows once you turn 28, it's all about being accountable for yer actions! No wait, that's 6. Always get those 2 numbers confused.

Kim

Amy, I have nothing useful to say except that this plagiarist is a liar, cheat, and thief and deserves all that is coming to her, be it through karma or legal action. You have handled this beautifully, and it is one of the reasons that I will always be a fan of yours.

Danovsteel

I used to have a Dad blog a looong time ago and used to read your stuff back then (2009ish). Always loved your layout, too. Someone pointed me to the current dust-up, and I wanted to post the comment I left on the Our Ordinary Life blog, as I suspect it won't ever air there, but I think there's info in there you might be interested in acting on. I run several sites, not much in the blogosphere anymore, so I'm sadly familiar with stealing content. It really chaps my ass.

So.

Here's what I wrote there, just a few minutes ago:

Claiming any justification for stealing another's intellectual property rights is disingenuous. My 1st grader knows it's wrong to pass someone else's work off as your own.

Here's what I would expect for you in the very near future - anyone you've written for? They could be financially on the hook for your plagiarism, if the content was posted on their site(s). If they get sued they will fight hard to make sure the suits are brought against you, not them. They may also demand a refund of monies paid to you for the "writing" you did for them. I know I would.

While posts may have been deleted, archive.org, Yahoo.com, Bing.com and Google.com will have a cache of all of it. It's good that your removed it, but that doesn't undo the crime, and the tracks and evidence will be there forever.

If I were to advise those you've stolen content from, I'd tell them to retain attorneys and to drag you into court to collect any and all compensation you earned through the use of their works. They could well bleed you dry. And deservedly so.

I laugh at the hypocrisy of your husband detailing your fight against others infringing on your copyright. Though it certainly does show that you very well did know what was right and wrong, and methodically and premeditatedly chose the wrong, knowing full well it was not the legal or ethical thing to do.

The good news? You're gonna be famous. The bad news? It won't be for the reasons you were hoping.

I'd be interested to know what you'll tell your children about this. I wonder what lessons they'll take from it.

Kristen

I love how the "bully" term gets thrown around every time someone gets called out on their shit. It's not "bullying" it's called "confrontation"--two entirely different coping techniques. The latter? Classy, just like Amy's post.

Dawn B

I have to kinda admit, I wasn't going to go with the whole "YEAH YOU SHOULD SUE HER!" thing but...I saw her site (never heard of her before) for the 1st time..and i dunno.. maybe.. if it's not you that'll sue her soon it'll be someone else. I hate to say this, but I think she really needs to learn a lesson. And I don't mean for those to sound like "fightin' words". I just think that she'll do it again to someone. She blatantly plagiarized. What a load for you to have to deal with. I'm so sorry this happened.

jadine

Wow. 27, ignorant, oopsie...none of these are valid excuses. It's shameful and embarrassing, and I'm glad you found out. My 11 year old knows not to steal. He also knows to own up to his mistakes, and to apologize.

Lisa

Just to be clear, I ALWAYS know when it's you writing.

Allison

Kudos to you for calling her out on the internet!

Dawn

But she's only 27. Only out of high school for 9 or 10 years. How could she be expected to know? Writing for the internet is HARD.

As should the stick be with which you get to beat her (figuratively).

I hate to tell Little Miss Only 27, but most lawyers are fully licensed and practicing law by the time they're 25. And there's a whole BUNCH O' LAWS they gotta know to do that. I think you can be expected to handle, "Thou shalt not steal."
by the time you're 27.

The only thing worse than plagerizing is the cowardly whining about being "only" 27 and the snarky tweets by the husband.

The Pussy Palace

Holy crap! 27? That is NO excuse. So glad she got caught.

Claudia

I don't know who this other person is and I honestly don't want to know, because I hate internet drama too. But seriously? Aside from how WRONG it is, how can anyone think they won't get caught when you are blogging to the same audience?!

Mrs4444

I commend you on the class you showed, writing this.

Now I'm wondering if anyone has ever plagiarized my writing. Hm.

Personal responsibility...taking ownership...Why is that such a difficult concept for so many people today?

Mrs4444

p.s. I stopped by by way of Melisa Wells' blog post.

Janessa

I can't believe she did that. I'm sure she isn't the only one plagiarizing other bloggers but she got caught. Now she needs to stop blogging. All her sponsors should back out and pull the plug on her. This is NOT okay. Ugh. Such a sign of the times. Sorry, Amy.

Aurelia

Good on you Amy. You said it simply and without malice. What K did was reprehensible and yet she keeps making excuses veiled with apologies. So sad.

I've been a long time reader of yours, ever since Noah was a baby. You're just an original and it's sad that instead of being inspired to write better she chose to steal whole chunks of numerous posts.

I'm glad it came out. I do hope this serves as an example to other bloggers out there thinking of doing the same as K or have been already doing so. Stealing is a crime. Whichever manner it is done so.

chuck

Someone wrote on in her comments that she was shocked at how vicious people were being...I wrote a comment to this person in reply saying that they should google the situation and see there was a lot more to it than just this issue with you.My comment never got published.I then commented to ask why she was only publishing "vicious" comments (for sympathy?) and not those that had constructive criticism but werent "vicious".What do you know?Ive been banned from her site! Too bad i never read it before this and was not ever planning to read it anyway...I'm obviously not missing much!

Lisa

From what I've been reading, it seems that any regular reader of hers should be able to distinguish between what she stole from you and what she actually wrote, because her own writing is horrible! I even had to reread the excerpts you included from her e-mail because they are very poorly constructed sentences and terrible grammar.

What she did is reprehensible. I hope she has to pay back any money she made from YOUR writing and give back any freebies she got from sponsors!

Eden

Usually just a committed reader(more lurking than commenting) but I have to say something. I have never read any of the plagiarized posts before, but just did and boy did that give me chills. Amy-you are right coming from every angle here. I do not have a degree in journalism either(as she claims) but the headers ALONE were red flags. Why did she even continue? Anyway, just keep up the good work Amy, no one can replace the real thing. (PLUS...karma biatch! Wait for it!)

Ali

The most offensive thing about her defense (aka the 'owning it' letter she posted) is the insinuation that pregnancy and stress rob a woman of reason and responsibility. As far as I know, I didn't commit any crimes while pregnant, and neither have most of the childbearing women in America! Maybe this will be the newest defense tactic in criminal trials..."But I was only 27! And pregnant! And stressed out! You can't blame me for robbing that bank..."

Also, dude, at 18 you can die for our county and vote for it's leaders, which is a massive responsibility. NINE years after that, at 27, she shouldn't be held accountable for theft? Please.

Molly

The hell?

You're joking, right?

Or at least F-ing kidding me.

That's ridiculous. And stealing someone else's sex column is just...I just...I don't even know what to do with that.

I'm so sorry. But good on you for standing up and giving her the what-for.

bd

I am sorry this happened, but I LOVE seeing this side of you -- the uber-professional, kick-ass side. You rocked this one.

Marylin

Christ! Just reading up on this now.
I'm 27, and you know what? I KNOW WHAT PLAGERISING IS!! Who'd have thought it??

I'm 27, and I have two sons, the youngest with autism, (6 and 4.5) who I take care of on my own. I also know what's right and wrong, and so does she.

Some people just don't have a clue when to just admit that they're in the wrong.

*sigh*

Dugi

I am sorry to read this. I have emailed that blogger telling her exactly what I think. I am sorry you have to deal with this. I admire the classy way in which you have responded to the situation.

annie

My 4th grader asked me for help citing sources on her report last night, maybe we could have this woman contact her for help now that she's got it down??

This is so pathetic!!

rojopaul

Wow. Came over from the Mouthy Housewives and I can't believe this. Great open letter to the offender and anyone else who may think about plagiarizing someone else's work. Now I want to read the blog about your sex life that she copied. That's actually really creepy.

die Frau

I didn't read everyone's responses, so I apologize if I'm repeating anyone's information: There is a way to disable right-clicking so your content isn't as easily copy-able. I'm not quite sure how to do it, but this is the second major example of this I've seen.

JulesInDC

Eff. That. Noise.

This makes me irate and want to swear like a sailor on your behalf. You are clever, unique, INCREDIBLY talented, and have clearly busted your ass over the years to build your brand and business. ANY excuse about ripping that off, especially while accepting MONEY AND SPONSORSHIPS, is complete and utter bullshit.

And being 27 makes you a grown-ass woman. Woman up and start acting like one.

Also, kudos for not throwing her any web traffic. Part of me wants to hunt her down, but she doesn't deserve the a revenue.

Terrorist fistbump to you, Amy.

Kathy

You put your stuff out there, that's what you get. You should expect freaks, since you are an 'experienced' blogger. You could have told her off in a few paragraphs. You didn't need to give her so much of your precious time by writing a f-ing dissertation. Damn!

Anne Pasi

As the lone dissenting opinion on here, shall I dare to say...is this such a big deal? Maybe some folks on here should gain some perspective? Not trying to be mean, just someone writing from outside the world of bloggers & blogging. Yeah, it stinks, but, really? Does it really stink that much? Wanting to damn someone to hell, sue them? A little much.Just my humble (minority) opinion.

Heather

There really isn't much to say on most of this. It's obviously wrong, lame, etc. Still I don't think anyone has pointed out that her husband at one point claimed to not know what she had done before the poo hit the fan. I'm not a blogger. My husband has no writing of mine besides emails and texts. Still he knows my writing. He also knows our sex life. How on earth can he think anyone will believe he didn't recognize those posts weren't her voice or that it wasn't their sex life?

(Of course I can't find the tweet because he deleted some before locking their accounts)

Amanda

I was super down about turning 27 this year. Not that it's old, but it's the whole aging thing and the fact that I'm doing it occurred to me. That said, I'm pumped as fuck to know that I can use my alleged youth as an excuse for straight up dumbassery. Hell yeah!

Shan @ Last Shreds Of Sanity

I knew she'd finally get caught one of these days by someone other than the bloggers who have been warning about her for years. I'm sorry this happened to you, but that girl and her husband are psychos.

She will never take full responsibility for what she's done -- she will always find an excuse to to lighten her part. It's her schtick.

But plagiarizing a sex post of yours?? WTF?? That's a new low, even for her.

And you're right, she is only sorry she got caught not for actually stealing your words. She is what they call dumb like a fox. Watch out for that crazy wench.

IzzyMom

I've had my writing stolen more than once and it's a sickening feeling.

One instance was brought to my attention by someone who saw something I wrote re-posted, verbatim and without attribution, on a Myspace blog ('nuff said, right?) and kindly alerted me to it. I have tried repeatedly to get the attention of the plagiarist but she is either ignoring me or doesn't maintain the account anymore. Either way, it sucks.

More recently and somewhat related to your situation, I found an almost word-for-word copy of something I wrote for AlphaMom on a site about baby gear. It's clearly an affiliate link blog but it's well done so it doesn't look like one of those spammy content scraper sites.

Anyway, I sent them a nastygram and made all sorts of very real threats and they took it down immediately.

All this to say, I kind of know how it feels and you've handled it with more grace and generosity than I could have mustered.

Sarah

I'm a few days late to this party but WTF. WTFWTFWTF.
How pathetic. You rule Amy! Well said.

Angry on your behalf

It seems to me that her advertisers and sponsors should be notified of this just in case they want to shift their budgets to someone more ethical in future.

Summer

Since when is 27 an excuse to do ANYTHING dumb? I might be wrong, but I'm pretty sure I was expected to be an adult by the time I hit 27.

Amethyst Moon

So, I'm really late to this party, but I want to say that I like the way you approached this by airing out your feelings, and allowing the rest of the world to figure it out without naming names. Funny thing is, I'm here because she posted on her Facebook TODAY that she is receiving death threats by phone for something she did 3 years ago! She states Avitable posted her info, so I went looking for what she was talking about. Had she not been going on about it on FB, I would be oblivious to it all. (clearly I need to catch up on some blog land drama and read a little more often.) I have to say I really hope people aren't actually calling her house with death threats because that is a little too far! Afterall, the pen is truly mightier than the sword!

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