[thelist] how to convince customers not to copy others' content?

Zhang Weiwu zhangweiwu at realss.com
Mon Mar 21 19:46:55 CDT 2011

Hello. Doing web business in China I come across customers asking me to 
copy others' content from time to time, typical frequent request is like 

Customer: Okay, so let's have a blog section, so that to attract visitor 
attention and search traffic.
Me: The blogger you just mentioned already decided to host his blog in 
sina.com. I guess we can "bribe" him in, perhaps? We could offer better 
and more specialized services like this and that, and we got a select of 
audience more focused to his topic.
Customer: No need that much of trouble, we just copy their blog to our 
website. Can it technically be done?
Me: Technically there is RSS, thus we can fetch the blog content on our 
website. But sina.com doesn't want us to do it, and blocks images from 
being displayed in this case.

Personally I think it is a stupid thing to do to just copy their content 
over here. But it's difficult to argue on copyright ground. In China 
people are very practical. I, like most service providers, hate to be 
regarded as someone not practical, which imply in-capable. Discuss 
copyright issue shows you are not practical, 'cos everybody are doing 
that. Even book publishers as client (who owns copyright of many) does 
not mind about copying others' content.

I think, if I can reason copying content a bad idea on a ROI basis or 
business efficiency basis, or proof that copied content only attract 
very little traffic and the longer staying time of visitors on the 
website does not increase royalty at all, all that doesn't worth the 
labor to do it, then I should be able to recommend my client without 
being disregarded as not practical. Do you have or came across such kind 
of proof?

Best regards and thanks in advance
Zhang Weiwu

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