Plagiarism and Wattpad

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There have been some issues in the context of safety of my work and others on Wattpad. From a few Wattpad friends on Facebook, it’s come to my attention that there has been a site (or multiple sites) for the past year that have allowed internet users the ability to download stories onto their own computer — pdf, word doc, epub — whatever the format. This means anyone can download anyone’s stories — yours, mine, any Wattpadder’s — slap their own names on it, and upload it as their own content. Change a few character and place names, and they can publish it and get money — and you’ll likely never know as it’ll be harder for you to find it on random Googling. The aforementioned site has been going on for a year and allegedly Wattpad has done nothing to get it taken down.

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There are likely other sites and downloads as we speak. You may have noticed several ambassadors and Wattpad-owned accounts sending out messages regarding what Wattpad is doing to ensure our stories are safe. This is likely what the messages are about.

From Wattpad:

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I’m no techie, but I’m a doctor and I know over-simplified language that are open to interpretation when I see it. This is too vague for any comfort. I also leverage available technology, policy, and legal solutions to bring you this news. I take screenshots and post it on a blog. Woopie-doo.

Godhand has a book with further details. You can find it in her “REMOVED” book . There are other Wattpadders who have expressed similar concerns and have taken similar action, like my good friends JessicaBFry and EliseNoble. Jess has also kindly posted on her account details regarding plagiarism and how one can protect one’s work from it. Wattpad has yet to address this plagiarising site specifically.

What it means for me is I do not wish any of my work to end up being stolen, especially as I have no current intentions to make money from my work. I want my work to be free. I want my work to be accessible on my terms. I want your feedback and support. I do not want other people to get paid for my hard work.

What it means for you is that my works will no longer be up in their entirety on Wattpad. Rest assured; I will continue to post stories on here for the foreseeable future, but works will not be available in their entirety on Wattpad — they will, however, be available fully on the Radish app, and will remain free/on freemium (which means the work becomes free after 1 week there). This helps reduce the risk of people downloading my full stories and monetising my hard work and tears until this issue is sorted, if ever.

I’m not the first Wattpadder to do this, nor will I be the last. Am I overreacting? Whining too much? Ungrateful? Perhaps, but it’s not changing the fact that my and countless others’ works can be plagiarised. Until this issue is sorted, this will be how I will continue to provide my stories for free… as this is just one step short of taking down all of my works as others have already done or are already doing.

Thank you for your understanding. Have you any experiences regarding this? What are your thoughts?

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