Posts Categorized: Snakes on a Plane

The Sincerest Form Of Flattery

I’ve hit the big time. Somebody has finally esteemed Yankee Fog highly enough to steal a post from here and pass it off as his own.
Perhaps not surprisingly, it’s the single most-popular entry at Yankee Fog: my exclusive sneak preview of the Snakes on a Plane trailer, which has received more hits than all the other entries on the site combined. Lately, its popularity has surged even higher, as people googling for the phrase Snakes on a Plane trailer have had the good fortune to end up at my site, instead of at some silly official site for the movie.
But recently, one visitor came here from a search for the phrase “the snake is wearing a false moustache.” Wondering how many other web pages could contain that phrase, I googled it myself–and that’s how I stumbled on my first plagiarist, who has reproduced my trailer almost word-for-word.
Now, it’s easy enough to quote something and forget to mention the source. So, I figured I’d give this obvious fan of my writing the benefit of the doubt. I made a comment on his blog, saying that I was sure he hadn’t intended to plagiarize, but the way he had framed the quote from me made it appear to be his writing. I mentioned that I’d appreciate it if he’d give proper credit.
Sure enough, within twenty-four hours, he had taken action–by deleting my comment.
A little poking around in this guy’s blog indicates that I’m not the first author he’s stolen from. For example, another entry was copied verbatim (and without credit) from this original entry at another writer’s site.
Annoyed as I am, it’s hard to get too upset. As far as I can tell, the blog belongs to a 16-year-old kid named (NAME DELETED). While that’s certainly old enough to understand why plagiarism is wrong, it’s too young to have to permanently suffer for stupid mistakes, and if (NAME DELETED) were to give proper credit to me and anybody else he’s stolen from, and to apologize, I’d certainly remove his name from this entry. That way, people Googling for (NAME DELETED) wouldn’t come across this entry.
Trust me, (NAME DELETED)–getting in the habit of plagiarism is the worst thing a young aspiring writer can do. Break the habit now, and you’ll be glad of it later in life.
UPDATED TO ADD: (NAME DELETED) has now given me proper credit in his blog, so, as promised, I’ve removed his name and the link to his site. He’s also responded here; if you’d like to see his side of the story, be sure to read the comments of this entry.