// Internet Duct Tape

Put a Copyright Notice in Your RSS Feed

Posted in Technology by engtech on April 17, 2008

Bloggin Tips and Tricks

As a blogger, your content is going to end up being stolen and republished on the Internet. It’s a fact of life, there’s nothing you can do about it.

One thing you can do however is put a copyright notice in your RSS feed with FeedBurner. (FeedBurner is the Google’s RSS publishing service).

  1. Sign in to your FeedBurner account.
  2. Click on My Feeds and choose the feed you want to add a copyright notice to.
  3. Click on Optimize tab, then Feed Flare on the right hand side.
  4. Cut and paste this text into the Add New Flare box:

    (Make sure to change http://www.yourdomain.com to your website URL).

  5. Click Save at the bottom of the screen.

Now your feed will display a copyright notice as well as a link back to your site. Thanks to the FeedBurner forums for this one.

If you want to use a Creative Commons copyright notice, then Feed Burner already supports it. Go to the Optimize tab and then choose Creative Comments from the left menu.

WordPress.com Bloggers

Unfortunately the WordPress.com “alternative” to FeedBurner doesn’t support creating your own Feed Flares, so you can’t use it to append a copyright message. You’ll have to cut-and-paste it into every blog post by hand.

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16 Responses

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  1. Chris M. Ferguson said, on April 17, 2008 at 9:13 pm

    Thank you.

  2. […] Put a Copyright Notice in Your RSS Feed :: Internet Duct Tape – Eric gives those of us using Feedburner to handle our RSS feeds a simple way to add a copyright notice to them. Thanks! […]

  3. Gabriel... said, on April 18, 2008 at 1:56 am

    I think there’s something we can do about it… I’ve been in the process of starting this over the past two weeks: http://exposingsploggers.wordpress.com I’ve already received an endorsement from Jonathan Bailey at ‘PlagiarismToday.com’. I’m still looking for ideas, so…

    I’ve also, just as an example, been fooling around with copyright notices on my blog, this is the latest: [Here]

    I’ve found putting text at the top screws up the RSS feed if it’s set to ‘Summary’, at the same time a jpeg with your URL and email address gets the point across if the blog is taken wholesale by a blog scraper… plus it can look cool.

    Even the Creative Commons notice/image can be modified to look… well, creative, in your sidebar.

  4. links for 2008-04-18 -- Chip’s Quips said, on April 18, 2008 at 3:39 am

    […] Put a Copyright Notice in Your RSS Feed « // Internet Duct Tape Good tip — I adapted it to add a link to the CCD CopyWrite license instead. (tags: tips feedburner wordpress feed copyright rss) […]

  5. Joseph A. Nagy, Jr. said, on April 18, 2008 at 8:05 am

    Thanks for the tip, just one question though, should the source for the flare look like this when I’m done:

    Generic FeedFlare for "CCD Copyright (c) 2007 http://ccd.apotheon.org"

    Shows the static text "CCD Copyright (c) 2007 http://ccd.apotheon.org" and links to http://www.ameliorations.us

    CCD Copyright (c) 2007 http://ccd.apotheon.org

  6. engtech said, on April 18, 2008 at 11:00 am

    @ Joseph A. Nagy, Jr.:

    The “Generic FeedFlare for” display is how FeedBurner displays it in the editor.

    If you look at your RSS feed you’ll see that it looks fine.

  7. engtech said, on April 18, 2008 at 11:03 am

    @ Gabriel…:

    The problem is a lot of sploggers ignore images and javascript. The only thing that’s guaranteed to make it through is a text link, usually… and even then you’d probably have to put it in the start of the feed in case they’re only grabbing excerpts and not full posts.

  8. engtech said, on April 18, 2008 at 11:21 am

    @ Gabriel…:

    Just went through some excerpt spammers… It looks like they strip out all html, javascript and images from the content they scrape. So there’s no way to catch those guys unless you put the copyright notice as the first line of your blog post.

  9. Gabriel... said, on April 18, 2008 at 11:38 am

    I do like the idea of leaving a text copyright notice at the top of a blog post, and have recommended people do it because it will be the quote picked up after the ubiquitous “Steve made a great post today on blog X, here’s a short summary, click here for the full post” statement. I also recommend people leave a link to their About Page somewhere in their post so there’s a pingback if it gets republished.

    The only way a text copyright really makes sense is if it’s at the top of the post and I’m finding people don’t like the text there because it messes with their RSS feed on other WordPress blogs.

    I think the biggest ‘problem’ right now is the pingbacks and trackbacks from the blog scraper sites are being absorbed by WP as spam and then deleted by people who don’t know their work is being stolen… I’ve seen so many blogs where people treat the ones which make it through to their post as something working for them, not as theft.

  10. Gabriel... said, on April 18, 2008 at 12:38 pm

    “Just went through some excerpt spammers…”

    I don’t know… I’ve had three blog scrapers (that I know of) steal entire posts, including photos, between the beginning of March and the first week of April. I wrote this two weeks ago: [here]

  11. […] explains how to put the copyright in your RSS […]

  12. Vaibhav said, on April 20, 2008 at 8:05 am

    Thank you for the tip… my feeds are now copyrighted…

  13. Netty Gritty said, on May 13, 2008 at 6:24 am

    This is bad. :(

    I am gonna use a blog post footer that will include the copyright notice. As for the feed, I have already added the feedflare.

  14. Czar said, on July 03, 2008 at 10:34 am

    I am usually create posts that I originally conceived. Putting a copyright notice on my blog’s RSS feed seems to be a good way of keeping my creations away from stealing and re-production.

  15. Gabriel... said, on August 09, 2008 at 1:31 am

    I just had a trackback pop up from a splogger who stole one of my posts wholesale, and the copyright notices I put on are there as well as the links back to my blog. I thought you’d be interested in seeing what it looks like…

    http pillboss dot org/pillsnews/?p=15801

  16. How to Get Six Pack Fast said, on April 15, 2009 at 11:38 am

    I noticed that this is not the first time at all that you mention the topic. Why have you chosen it again?

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