Is my Proz profile content copyrighted?
Thread poster: Ehsan Alipour

Ehsan Alipour  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:11
Member (2012)
Farsi (Persian) to English
+ ...
Apr 7

Hello,

I recently noticed that a new non-paying Proz member has used my 'user message' in her profile without changing a word. Do you know if Proz has any rules regarding such actions?


 

Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 03:41
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
Similar experience Apr 7

Some years ago I noticed that a Proz Com Certified member was using exactly the same long list of keywords as I did in my profile without changing a word. I simply added a few more keywords, shrugged my shoulders and considered it as a reflection of the person’s character...

Kevin Fulton
 

Kevin Fulton  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:41
German to English
Copyright doeen't prevent stealing Apr 7

Copyright only provides you with the right to sue someone for stealing your published work. It doesn't prevent someone from copying your Proz profile, since the thief knows that proving harm would be impossible if not prohibitively expensive to pursue in a court.

 

Amel Abdullah  Identity Verified
Jordan
Arabic to English
+ ...
Report it Apr 7

You should report this to the relevant site staff so that it can be investigated. I am almost certain that Proz will take down the copied material.

 

Mirko Mainardi  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 04:41
Member
English to Italian
Proz rules Apr 7

Kevin Fulton wrote:

Copyright only provides you with the right to sue someone for stealing your published work. It doesn't prevent someone from copying your Proz profile, since the thief knows that proving harm would be impossible if not prohibitively expensive to pursue in a court.


OK, maybe "is my profile content copyrighted?" was the wrong question, technically speaking, but what the OP went on to ask was "does Proz have any rules regarding such actions?", so I'll go out on a limb by saying that's what he probably meant...

So, for instance, imagine there's a cached page of his profile proving he was already using that tagline 6 years ago, while the other user only registered on proz 3 years ago... Could proz "force" the other user to stop using it?


abdelazizma
 

Ehsan Alipour  Identity Verified
Local time: 07:11
Member (2012)
Farsi (Persian) to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thank you + clarification Apr 7

@Teresa Borges

Thank you for sharing your experience. I wonder if you will do the same if someone copies content not from your keywords, but from your 'about me' section.

@Kevin Fulton

Thank you for your reply. You are right. I think the problem is with my choice of word. I should have used 'protected' instead of 'copyrighted'.

@Amel Abdullah

Thank you for the advice. I will do that.

@Mirko Main
... See more
@Teresa Borges

Thank you for sharing your experience. I wonder if you will do the same if someone copies content not from your keywords, but from your 'about me' section.

@Kevin Fulton

Thank you for your reply. You are right. I think the problem is with my choice of word. I should have used 'protected' instead of 'copyrighted'.

@Amel Abdullah

Thank you for the advice. I will do that.

@Mirko Mainardi

Thank you for your reply. Yes, I should have used 'protected' instead of 'copyrighted'.

Imagine you spend a lot of time writing what you think is an impressive 'about me' section, and then someone steals it. I think there should be a way to stop it.
Collapse


 

jyuan_us  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:41
Member (2005)
English to Chinese
+ ...
Removed Apr 7

Duplicated posting removed.

[Edited at 2019-04-07 13:59 GMT]


 

jyuan_us  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 22:41
Member (2005)
English to Chinese
+ ...
It has occurred to me at least twice Apr 7

I found my profile page was copied almost in its entity by someone in China a few years ago, so I rewrote it. Visiting this forum today reminded me to check it out again. Googling “I work very hard to make my translations accurate”, which I randomly copied from my profile page, I found someone on Upwork is using my profile message with only the numbers changed.

Can I anything about it?

[Edited at 2019-04-07 13:27 GMT]


 

Teresa Borges
Portugal
Local time: 03:41
Member (2007)
English to Portuguese
+ ...
@Ehsan Apr 7

I don’t know how I’d reacted as I haven’t been a victim yet. For starters, my user message (Human Translation) is a very common one and is probably used by other colleagues. Some years ago I had a punchy tagline on Proz but on reflection I thought it could be seen as overconfident and I changed it. My “about me section” is so specific to my own circumstances that I doubt it would be of service to anyone else, unless they also stole my identity and my business name (fingers crossed!). I... See more
I don’t know how I’d reacted as I haven’t been a victim yet. For starters, my user message (Human Translation) is a very common one and is probably used by other colleagues. Some years ago I had a punchy tagline on Proz but on reflection I thought it could be seen as overconfident and I changed it. My “about me section” is so specific to my own circumstances that I doubt it would be of service to anyone else, unless they also stole my identity and my business name (fingers crossed!). I’m not a litigious person and I doubt it would end up being worth my while to take these people to court, though I have done it twice or thrice under different circumstances – mostly related to non-payments – and I won my case. As far as I know it hasn’t been possible to bring to an end – once and for all – all the cases of scammers impersonating reputable translators with stolen CVs.Collapse


 

Oliver Walter  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 03:41
Member (2005)
German to English
+ ...
Make copying more difficult Apr 7

Here's an idea that would require some action by ProZ and I'm not sure how difficult this would be or how beneficial the result would be:
Keep the present way for the member to edit his/her profile by editing the content as text, but amend the ProZ website so that when the member has finished editing the profile, the one displayed to the public is a graphics image, not copyable text. That would make it more difficult (but not impossible) for the general public to copy it. (Perhaps this ide
... See more
Here's an idea that would require some action by ProZ and I'm not sure how difficult this would be or how beneficial the result would be:
Keep the present way for the member to edit his/her profile by editing the content as text, but amend the ProZ website so that when the member has finished editing the profile, the one displayed to the public is a graphics image, not copyable text. That would make it more difficult (but not impossible) for the general public to copy it. (Perhaps this idea is no use if the copier can simply copy the graphics and then display the same graphics in his/her profile.) Or is there some other way to keep the profile easy for the member to edit but difficult to copy?
Collapse


Kevin Fulton
 

DZiW
Ukraine
English to Russian
+ ...
Just a coincidence? Apr 7

Oliver, while there's a point, such modern apps as FineReader can esily OCR right from the screen, so it would require some watermarking/filtering too. Perhaps, it could do for a very lazy person, but not for a smart wannabe perpetrator.

I don't do biz via ProZ, so I couldn't care less about someone "borrowing" my data or a motto without permission. While some things fall in place similarly, a lie (copycating blindly) always turns out badly for the misdoer--sooner or later. However,
... See more
Oliver, while there's a point, such modern apps as FineReader can esily OCR right from the screen, so it would require some watermarking/filtering too. Perhaps, it could do for a very lazy person, but not for a smart wannabe perpetrator.

I don't do biz via ProZ, so I couldn't care less about someone "borrowing" my data or a motto without permission. While some things fall in place similarly, a lie (copycating blindly) always turns out badly for the misdoer--sooner or later. However, if a copycat did manage to amend, learn and master what was indicated in the ad, then it's not a lie any longer)

Let the children play, if it's to the good, why?
Collapse


 

Thomas T. Frost  Identity Verified
Member (2014)
Danish to English
+ ...
And then Google won't index it Apr 7

Oliver Walter wrote:

the one displayed to the public is a graphics image, not copyable text.


That idea is dead in the water, as no search engine would index the text either. The purpose of a profile is, after all, to be found. This is like using a sledgehammer to crack a nut.

'Keyword list,' you may say, but that's more of an anachronism than a useful feature, as Google has all but stopped taking keyword lists into account to fight keyword spam. But old habits die hard. Some people need 20 years to discover when things change.

If someone's content is stolen, the first thing to do is to complain to the site and/or web hosting company that hosts the site with the stolen content. Most would take it down to prevent litigation. One can also complain to Google.


 

Sheila Wilson  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 03:41
Member (2007)
English
+ ...
Contact them? Apr 7

I once came across a profile that used my "about me" text almost word for word. I sent them a private message and they replied in the way I hoped they would, apologising and saying they'd delete it; which they did. I think some people have problems thinking for themselves, but don't mean any real harm. He certainly didn't. If my message hadn't done the trick, I'd have raised a Support Ticket, getting ProZ.com staff to act.

Yolanda Broad
Luciana Trevisi
Kay Denney
 

Viesturs Lacis  Identity Verified
Latvia
Local time: 05:41
Member (2014)
English to Latvian
Possible overreaction? Apr 8

Ehsan Alipour wrote:
I recently noticed that a new non-paying Proz member has used my 'user message' in her profile without changing a word.


Ehsan Alipour wrote:
Imagine you spend a lot of time writing what you think is an impressive 'about me' section, and then someone steals it. I think there should be a way to stop it.

So, in your particular case - which section of your profile is it that you suspect this person of copying? I think there is a significant difference between the two sections.

If it's the "about me" section, then it is virtually a given that they are misrepresenting themselves by claiming to have your degrees and expertise, in which case they absolutely should be reported and dealt with.

If it's the "user message" section, then surely you aren't asserting that an alleged reuse of two generic and very common descriptive sentences, the variations of which are likely used by a dozen translators (and many others in different fields if you disregard the "translation and language industry" bit) at any given moment, warrants intervention as a copyright issue?


 


To report site rules violations or get help, contact a site moderator:

Moderator(s) of this forum
Lucia Leszinsky[Call to this topic]

You can also contact site staff by submitting a support request »

Is my Proz profile content copyrighted?

Advanced search






SDL Trados Studio 2019 Freelance
The leading translation software used by over 250,000 translators.

SDL Trados Studio 2019 has evolved to bring translators a brand new experience. Designed with user experience at its core, Studio 2019 transforms how new users get up and running and helps experienced users make the most of the powerful features.

More info »
CafeTran Espresso
You've never met a CAT tool this clever!

Translate faster & easier, using a sophisticated CAT tool built by a translator / developer. Accept jobs from clients who use SDL Trados, MemoQ, Wordfast & major CAT tools. Download and start using CafeTran Espresso -- for free

More info »



Forums
  • All of ProZ.com
  • Term search
  • Jobs
  • Forums
  • Multiple search