Today, my Twitter feed blew up for a bit with talk of plagiarism and bloggers stealing other people’s words. I know that I’m new to the blogging world, but I always thought that the point of blogging, and writing in general, was to take the words that were floating around in your head, and put them down on paper. Taking someone else’s words kind of defeats the purpose. And for what? To show how popular you are? To get as many people as you can to clink on your site and read your post? To get companies to give you free stuff?
Maybe it’s because I don’t have a large following, or maybe it’s because I write for me, and if other people happen to relate to my words, or like what I have to say, then great. If they don’t, that’s fine too. Sure it might be great to be able to work with companies that I like, and share my thoughts on products. It wouldn’t be so great, though, if it made me feel like I no longer had my own words. I’m not willing to beg, borrow or steal in order to do that. And that is what taking words is. It’s stealing. And it’s not cool. Remember all of those lectures in school about how it sucked to take someone else’s thoughts and pass them off as your own? Same thing goes here. Just because it’s online and not in some textbook or library somewhere doesn’t make it any less wrong. You wouldn’t take the words of Dr. Seuss and try to pass them off as yours, would you? So why would you do it to another blogger? Because they are not as well known?
Have you ever been in a group of people when all of a sudden, 6 people are all trying to say the same thing, but in a slightly different way? Of course you have – we’ve all been there. That’s ok. The thought may be the same, but we all have different ways of expressing ourselves. That is the beauty of writing. I love to hear different people explain how things work in their head.
We all write for different reasons. Sometimes I have thoughts or questions that I want to get out. Sometimes I have funny stories, or things that I think are interesting that I want to share. Sometimes I just want to be silly. It’s my blog. That is my right. They are my words. I just don’t understand taking the words out of someone else’s head. To me, that would be like taking someone else’s underwear out of their dryer. You may think that it’s pretty, but there are some things that you just shouldn’t do. You wouldn’t want someone coming into your house and taking your lacy undies now, would you?