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What Is Different Between Copying And Scraping?

We see a few spam blogs, in Blogger Help Forum: Get Help with an Issue, that are classified for having scraped content.

Some nervous blog owners, who routinely copy content as part of their blog posts, want to know if their blogs are vulnerable to "scraped content" spam classifications.

I suspect that there are several issues to consider, regarding use of copied content in your blog.

To discuss "copying" vs "scraping", IMHO, you need to look at at least 3 details.

  1. Intent. Do you intend to do something useful with the copied content - or are you just looking to "bulk up" your blog?
  2. Permission. Do you have permission to copy (or is the content public)?
  3. Ratio. Does the original content in your blog vastly outweigh the copied content?

Intent.

You can start with copied content - but a blog with any future has to have some source of its own content - unique, plus informative and interesting.

If you are going to copy another blog or website, use the copied content to illustrate or to reinforce a key point in your blog post. Don't build your post around somebody else's content - start with your own content, and add relevant samples of other blogs and websites.

You can design a blog like a high school term paper, if you wish. Just remember, if you can Google it, and scrape into your blog, Google can find it - as can your teacher.

Permission.

If you copy content, make sure that you have permission of the owner. Be careful who you get permission from.

The blog or website that displays the content may not actually be the owner. Find out the legal owner of the content that interests you, and get permission from that person.

And if the owner is kind enough to give you permission to copy, and provides guidelines, observe the guidelines. Be polite - not presumptuous, when you interpret someone's permissions.

Ratio.

In 2013, Matt Cutts of Google estimated that somewhere between 25% to 30% of the content on the web is duplicative. That does not mean that your blog should use 25% copied content.

If you have a small blog, and are just starting out, a 10% (copied) to 90% (original) is a much better goal. In this blog, I would like to think I have more like 5% to 95%.

I, personally, don't mind if people copy my content - as long as they include the links in the posts.

You will get better search engine reputation with your own content. If you copy content from blogs and websites with better reputation, guess which blog / website has better chance of being linked? More original content == more content to index == better reputation == better chance of being listed, with duplicated content.

The more original content you publish, that gets indexed, the better chance you have of getting readers. The less original content in the blog, the greater the chance the blog will be classified, as a spam host. It's that simple.

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