Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Blog Stealing Is Back In Full Swing

This has been a rough week for me and other bloggers. Many bloggers had their materials posted on a school website and given away. Really? This teacher had no problem offering up freebies and packets she had purchased from others.  Maybe we need to remind other teachers of the hard work involved in creating materials. Is this so complicated? This teacher sells materials on TpT  too.  I am not as forgiving as other teachers and want to make it clear that this is really not okay. In my world this is stealing and  not what I would expect from other educators. Respect the efforts of others and come up with your own content. 
Always ask permission to post someone else's idea or a document and link back to their blog to give them credit. If it's not your idea do not use it.
Just because you use other graphics does not make it okay to take someone's idea and make it your own.
If someone has an idea on their blog and you have the same idea, let it go or the other blogger will think less of you. They posted it first. 
I know many of you have experienced this and feel so badly about it. I think we need to expect more from our peers. I hope this has not happened to you.
The email I received was so ridiculous that my husband laughed hysterically.  I did not find it  that funny. After assuring me of how much she loved all that I had created on my blog she wanted to copy some ideas and wanted a recommendation for where to sell them. Then she wanted to question the validity of my copyright. My attorney daughters loved this. What is her agenda? Really?  Is this what teachers are about now? She wants help stealing my work? This is more than I can take. Am I losing my mind?
Another blogger found something of mine on pinterest, copied it and gave it away. I sell it as a packet. She was fine with this. I was horrified and disgusted. 
I want to know how you feel and what norms we need to remind teachers to follow?
Okay, now I am trying to be over this and move on. Thanks for letting me vent. I am probably the oldest of all of you and I got really mad... I want to protect you from this unprofessional behavior. You are sweeter about these things than I am.  I am really struggling with these issues and feel miserable. I need a thicker skin. Maybe I need to retire... Look out for each other.
Love you,
Fran

36 comments:

Traci said...

Oh Fran. This is horrible. Not only is it horrendous that a fellow teacher would do something so absolutely wrong - without apology nor shame. It is maddening that another HUMAN BEING could be so ethically lacking! It is disgusting that these people actually do not see a problem with what they've done! I'm so floored about what she emailed you! Is that naivety or complete disregard?

cindy said...

I am so sorry this is happening to you and others.

Kristin said...

:(
I hate this!!! What is wrong with people???????
Big hug to you!

Fran Kramer said...

I love you guys and I needed to vent so thanks for allowing me to go crazy!

heather said...

Oh, no! How awful! I love your ideas and items to purchase. I hope this one bad seed doesn't push you into NOT sharing your ideas! You make life so much easier for us all and inspire me to be a better teacher!

Mrs. M said...

This is just terrible. Where can I find out if my items are listed too?
You are right! This is stealing & it is beyond WRONG! :(

Fran Kramer said...

One of the bloggers contacted her principal and it was all removed. Imagine your principal finding that out! I would die.

Annie Moffatt said...

Fran...I LOVE you to pieces! I got an email this week to telling me that someone was giving away my products on their wiki:( UGH! That made me so made and I needed to vent to someone to. That is just NOT right! Thank you for your post! I miss you sweet Fran!
Annie:)

Fluttering Through First Grade said...

Sick to our stomachs and we're SO sorry Fran! You were the first to ever give us blogging advice, and the one thing you said that has stuck with us is, "It's not if, but WHEN it happens." It is something we are so very grateful you shared. Thank you!

I don't think anyone who has ever poured their hearts, souls and countless hours into creating teaching materials can ever prepare for the gut wrenching feeling this causes when it shows up in some form or fashion without our consent. Innocent or not...It stinks! :(

We often hear the rationale that "ideas aren't copyrighted"...This comment bothers us because lines get muddled...How much constitutes an idea? The thought? Cover to cover? NONE OF THE ABOVE? Would we accept a student's excuse if they got an "idea" from their neighbor on a test? No, that's called cheating. What about morals? Ethics? The Golden Rule!?!

Elevator Down...Exiting Soap Box...LOL

We love you and your venting. It helps us all learn and grow!!

:)Tammy



Shuna Patterson said...

So sorry this happened to you
{((((((((hugs))))))} friend

Mrs. Mac said...

Oh for heavens sakes! What are these people thinking? I'm sorry this is happening to you and others. Lisa
quiltwoman0@gmail.com

Jackie said...

I whole heartedly(sp?) agree with you! Just because you give something away for free still doesn't make it right. Just because you are inspired by others, doesn't make it right. Making these packets and resources is hard work and deserves to be paid for. Pretty soon, someone is going to have enough and actually sue over this. Can you say Napster????? Being inspired is OK...stealing is not.

Fran Kramer said...

You are so right Jackie. The coach who took a ton of materials and put it on her district website at the expense of other bloggers really crossed a line. She told me she had no idea this was not okay. However my terms are written all over my materials and I am sure others make their conditions quite clear. This district could have gotten in a lot of trouble for this. Can she read?

Kim said...

Good morning Fran! This is just inexcusable. I am so sorry this has happened to you and others. I'm glad that you posted this. I would be very upset too. There's a difference in being inspired to come up with you own ideas vs. blatant copying. The handmade arts world sees this all the time too. My wish for you is that now you have released your thoughts, you will find a peace because we don't want you to retire yet!! :) I also hope in releasing your thoughts that those who have actually done this or have thought that this might be ok will be struck with a guilt & admit fault or think about what they are/were doing.
Your work is amazing and spot on for helping these little ones. Please, please keep it up!
From one avid fan,

Kim F.

kathy d said...

I am a kindergarten teacher and I BUY so many things from you and others who create the great things on tpt! I would NEVER think of copying these to sell....who are these people? Perhaps they are the same ones who go into a store and copy materials in there and try to sell them? Weird... But what I find even more humorous, if that is possible, is that they asked you? Not the sharpest tool in the shed?
PLEASE keep doing what you are doing, you have soooo enriched my teaching. I thank you from the bottom of my heart! Just keep a watchful eye out for these thieves!

Camille said...

I can't believe this is happening again (or still happening). This has been mentioned so many times in blogs as not being okay. Plus TPT now has a way for to purchase more than one license. That seems to make it SOOOOO obvious. If a district / coach wants to share someone's materials then they need to purchase a license for each person. Obvious!!!

I am so upset for you that maybe I am not thinking straight. But would it be too awful if we started naming names? Just imagine a blog that was devoted to listing names of bloggers who had stolen ideas and shared or posted them. Kind of like the FBI's most wanted list. Could those teachers be banned from TPT for a year?

I know I am being bad trying to think of punishments, but it needs to stop!

Camille
An Open Door

Mary said...

Oh my gosh. This is insane! I'm so sorry that happened to you. Do you know how others of us might be able to find out if any of our items were included?

Feel better.

Thanks!
Mary

Caitlin said...

This is terrible. I'm so sorry this has happened to you again! It just seems like common sense that these people are lacking! Please keep up your amazing work and don't let a few bad apples spoil your great teaching resources. You are an inspirational, giving teacher that deserves better! Thanks for all you do and share!!

Unknown said...

Yowza! This makes me sick - what is wrong with people? I'm not a teacher but I have a granddaughter in Kindergarten and I follow your blog to help her at home. I appreciate the work you do!

Kindergarten Myles said...

Teachers will often have the same ideas on how to do things or games they make because of the material and curriculum we work with. However, copying another person's work on purpose is wrong just like it was when they were in kindergarten. I love seeing other peoples ideas on blogs and I buy things that are different from what I'd make because they are neat or are like what I'd make because I don't have the clipart or time. Games, booklets and packets take a ton of time. People always deserve recognition for their work.
Jenn

journeyfan said...

I think this is horrible. I give you (and others who post wonderful ideas) so much credit for all your hard work, and the fact that you share it is amazing. For someone, let alone an elementary teacher, to steal it and think it's ok is so sad. Sorry this happened to you....
Cheryl

Pepedog said...

Absolutely terrible!! I can't believe someone would do this and then think it's okay. Yuck. :(

Heidi Butkus said...

Dear Fran,
UNBELIEVABLE! So she really expected you to give her advice on how to best STEAL from you???? O... M... G!!!! Now I've heard EVERYTHING!

Last year, somebody posted one of my holiday projects on their blog as a download, and that made me pretty mad, too. I just don't see why people think that if it's a free download, that means that they have your permission to do absolutely anything they want with it- including give it away themselves or sell it!

I have had several inquiries from people that want to include my Rules for the iPad poster in their iPad handouts. I told them to give people the link instead, and send their participants to my blog to download it. After all, the purpose of the download is to bring people to my blog, right?

Sigh... Sometimes I think that things will never, ever change...
Heidi Butkus

http://heidisongs.blogspot.com

Lupita said...

I love all that you share, please do not take these wonderful resources out!!! Every time I post something on my web, I fear someone will steal an idea, but how do I put a copy right on a photo? I would hate to take down the pictures because like some of my kids, I am a visual learner and I know there are people like me that appreciate a photo to go with an idea.:) lilkindergarden.blogspot.com

KinderLearningBunnies said...

Fran,
I'm sorry this has happened to you. I hope that you track this teacher down and do what you need to do to make this right. My own ebook business was shut down by eight different teachers who posted my materials as their own or posted them on yahoo groups. I was lucky to find them and report their fraud to their school districts. This is stealing and property theft. We have to treat each other with more respect.

Michele said...

I don't get how some people cannot understand how wrong it is to give away products that they have purchased! At the beginning of this year the assistant principal at my school announced at a staff meeting that if one person in our grade level purchased things on TPT they could copy it for their entire grade level. I couldn't believe it! I told my grade level that it is not okay to do that and I had to tell the assistant principal too! She acted like it was no big deal and I tried to explain how hard people work to make the products and it is wrong to copy it for everyone. It is the same as buying one cd and copying it for everyone in your family! I don't get it!!

Karin Lee said...

hi, ok, now I'm paranoid. I just want to check with you that I'm not doing anything wrong. I have bought many units from you and others on different blogs. I do not claim your ideas as my own and would never try to sell any of them but I have put them on my class web page. I have a little blurb claiming to be a blog hopper. Is this ok? I want to be a PC blogger :)
Thanks!
Karin

Fran Kramer said...

Heidi,
Someone posted my Thanksgiving retelling bracelet as her own idea with a matching book on the story. This is not her idea and now it is posted as a freebie on TpT. this is on a post I have from several years ago and is from my head. She knows this is not hers. I need to be over it but it really bothers me. I expect more from teachers. I can only imagine how you feel.

Deedee Wills said...

What a nightmare!!! I simply do not understand this idea or the idea of "pinterest inspired"... It makes me itchy and twitchy all over.

I'm sorry this has happened to you!

Eleanor said...

I always thought we teachers had to stick together. This is such a shame. You have helped bring so much joy and excitement back into my teaching. I cannot fathom all the hard work, time and effort you have poured into your products. For someone else to be that lazy and brazen is beyond words.

Teresa said...

This is why I have not started a blog or TPT store. There are so many great ideas out there, just with different graphics. I would feel terrible posting something as my great idea when really it is just a tweak on something i saw somewhere else. Teachers have been known to beg, borrow or steal someone else's great idea but to profit from it is just plain wrong. Thanks for all your hard work, Fran and for trying to keep people honest.

LuannK said...

Fran, I want to thank you for all your great ideas. I am so sorry that someone did this. Please keep it up. I am so happy when I see Ccss that work with Young 5 kiddos, it's hard to find things for them to do that are developmentally appropriate.

Amanda said...

Sorry to read this, Fran! I also had encountered a wiki with one of my paid items listed for free last week. The wiki was FULL of TpT items... free and priced. I simply emailed the woman who was responsible, and as nicely as I could muster (which still probably wasn't very nice), I asked her to take it down. She removed all of the items, fortunately, but I can so relate to the anger that you feel when someone rips you off in one way or another. My Sub Tub has been recreated over and over again on TpT... with the submarine and the whole nine-yards. I'm not sure what the answer to this is... but I do know it's terribly unethical and disappointing.

Fran Kramer said...

Amanda,
That is disgusting to me and pretty disillusioning. I can only imagine how bad that felt. Does anyone have a value system. Paul should be contacted when someone does this on Tpt. I am so sorry this happened to you. It is horrifying that teachers are okay with this.

Becky said...

I am also a tpt seller and fellow kinder teacher!! I always tell my husband if I didn't create it, I'm not making it. Y would I take that time to make something when I could just buy it?!? That person is crazy!!!! I like to get support from other teachers so they will support me as well! There are so many talented teachers out there, I'd never want to take credit for their hard work!! I get offended when someone asks me for something I buy... I always just tell them where they can purchase! And I hope people do the same with my products.

Debbie Ann said...

GRRRR! I am so sorry for what is happening to you! I was wondering where you were? Hugs...