Writing to me is personal. It's a way to share my thoughts, my experiences, my life. I've always done it and I always will, whether it's on a coffee-stained napkin, in a notebook or on the palm of my hand.
It's what I do. It's who I am.
It's not so important to me who reads it, although I appreciate that people do. It's not important to me who doesn't read it. Up until now, sharing my life in this space has been nothing but good.
And then last week happened.
I want to ask you a question. What would you do if your writing was posted somewhere else? It's a simple question. Material of mine was posted on someone else's blog, nothing personal thankfully or even something that I worked really hard at writing, but still...mine. Mine.
When I found the content, I tried everything I could to contact this person privately...which she in turn saw as "stalkerish." I'm sorry, but I have a few (more than a few) issues with this.
#1 - The blog author has her personal information all over the Internet. Now, I'm not Agatha Christie, but it took less than 5 minutes to find her on Twitter, Facebook and her photography site. And from those avenues, I attempted to send her a polite email asking her to please get back to me regarding her blog. I thought I was being nice, instead of leaving a comment for all of her readers to see. Apparently, being nice makes you a stalker, according the the email she sent back to me.
#2 - Are you kidding me??? I just so happened to find my material on your site and I'm the one with the problem????? Sure, you didn't pretend that you authored it, but you didn't ask permission OR credit the blog author at all (which would have been done had you had permission).
#3 - What ever happened to bloggers common sense? I guess just like regular common sense, not everyone is blessed with it.
#4 - It's okay to link to someones blog without permission. It's not okay to TAKE THEIR ENTIRE POST and say you don't know where you found it! The blog author stated in her email to me that "tons of sites link to me without my permission so I don't link to others," which, alright fine I don't really care because that has nothing to do with what you did! A link is very different from a post. And by the way, in her profile, she says she is a teacher.
#5 - I understand that the Internet has grown at such a rapid pace since people began using it for everything from how to look up a recipe to how to save a life, but there are LAWS protecting Intellectual Property and it's common knowledge that you don't take what is not yours. Apparently they didn't teach this at whatever school this lady attended.
It's not the end of the world, but it makes me want to bang my head against the wall.
And the worst part about the whole thing?
I've made an enemy.
I never intended to do that.