There are more than 800 blogs at this site, and many thousands of photos. THOUSANDS of photos.
I love these old kit homes and I love this piece of our history, but I’m getting mighty disheartened and discouraged.
Today, I have discovered (for the umpteenth time) that my work – my photos – have been lifted en masse from my site and placed on someone else’s website without a speck of attribution or credit. In this lengthy essay, my name does not appear.
Photos yes – name NO.
The person (or people) who lifted my photos didn’t even bother to edit out some of the flaws in my photos, but simply copied and pasted them.
With few exceptions, each and every photo is the result of a great deal of personal expense and effort. And that doesn’t even touch on the amount of time (years, actually) it took to learn and memorize hundreds and hundreds of kit house designs. But, as I’ve said before, this is a labor of love and for the most part, folks seem genuinely grateful to be learning more about this piece of American architectural history.
Heaven knows, I don’t make enough money from this gig to keep body and soul together. In fact, I frequently have to throw my own money at this venture to keep it going.
How is it that people can think it’s okay to take someone’s work but not give credit? Did no one ever tell them that it’s wrong to take things without asking? When they were in school, did no one ever tell them that it’s wrong to copy the answers from someone else’s test? Have they never heard of the Ten Commandments?
Or do they simply lack the sophistication to understand that violation of intellectual property is just as wrong as stealing lawn furniture or bicycles or televisions? Or maybe they don’t realize that the laws governing intellectual property apply to internet content as well?
Tomorrow, I’ll return to happy, happy posts, but today, I’m so very disheartened and disappointed by these so-called historians who take other people’s work, and don’t put a single word of credit or attribution with their posts.
It’s enough to make a person abandon historical research altogether.
*Images from pre-1923 publications are now in the public domain, which means they can be reprinted without permission. And there is a difference between plagiarism and copyright infringement. Copyright infringement is taking copyright-protected intellectual property without permission (such as is now happening regularly with my photos). Even if a work is out of copyright (public domain), it can still be plagiarized. If I copied every word from Frances Hodgson Burnett’s 1910 best-seller, “The Secret Garden,” and published it under my own name, that would be plagiarism. If I copied every word from Orson Scott Card’s 1980 best-seller “Ender’s Game,” that would be plagiarism and copyright infringement.
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