Oh, now THIS is nice… I think

I’m going through my traffic logs and I see some people hitting my site from some guy’s blog. I check it out, and what do I find?

A very familiar story. Very familiar. (Basically he’s got a copy of Crimes of Personality cut-and-pasted into his blog.)

Ummm… huh?

Honestly I don’t know whether to be pissed or flattered. I’m leaning toward flattered, but I’m not sure of the thought process (if any) that went on here. He’s got a link back to my site, so he (or she, whatever) is obviously not claiming it as their own work. Is this content theft? The only real “loss” here is whatever advertising revenue I won’t get when people read my story there instead of here… but we all know by know that I don’t really give a damn about ad revenue at this point. Hell, I’m distributing the story on bittorrent myself, free of ads and with a link back to my site. On the other hand, I’m gaining some marginal exposure because there’s a link to my site. On the OTHER other hand, I’m trying to get people to read my stories HERE so that I can maybe guilt them into donating money to keep this site going.

I dunno…

What kind of asshole would I be if I gave this guy shit for copying one of my freely-available stories (yet still giving me credit)? I don’t wanna do that. That would be asshattery of the first order… sorta of like a rock band suing its own fans or something. Nobody would do that shit; that’s crazy!

Then I notice that he’s got ads of his own on that page. Is he making money from my story? Probably not… this is a myspace blog, so those ads probably belong to Myspace. So then… is MYSPACE (in theory) earning money from my story? THAT I cannot allow. Or can I? Is the (minimal) value I get from the additional exposure worth the (equally minimal) loss income? And what if this WASN’T a story that I was already giving away off-site… what if I click on this guy’s blog tomorrow and see all four December novels posted there?

I honestly don’t know what to do.

Any lawyers out there? I’ll stop hating you long enough to listen to your input. Then I’ll go back to wanting to face-stab you with a brick. Nothing personal.

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