A few days ago I got a trackback from a site that had copied Tyson’s review of Online Opportunity without providing proper attribution. I’d suggested to Tyson that he use a signature plugin to include a link back to his blog in his RSS feed.
I belatedly realized it’d be a good idea for me to do the same, so downloaded DD Sig. You can see the signature this adds on the single post pages:
If you found this post interesting or helpful, consider subscribing to our RSS feed. If you’re already a subscriber, thank you!
Unfortunately, I discovered that DD Sig doesn’t add a signature to the RSS feed. But I liked automating the call to subscribe, so I left it active. I then located RSS Signature, which does add a signature to the RSS feed (and nowhere else).
So now the RSS feed has this at the bottom of every post:
© Online Opportunity – This post was written for Online Opportunity, a blog about how to make money online. If you found it interesting or helpful, consider subscribing to our RSS feed. If you’re already a subscriber, thank you!
You’ll notice that I don’t use a simple link back to Online Opportunity, but rather use a keyword link I’d like to rank higher for in search engines. I figure that if my posts are going to be stolen and used somewhere else, I might as well get a backlink with my choice of anchor text out of the deal.
The main benefit, though, is that anyone who sees this post on another blog will know it didn’t originate there, and be able to click through to come here to see more posts like it. And even if they don’t realize the post was stolen, they may still subscribe to my feed and start picking up the posts from the original source.
As a funny note, a couple of days after my John Chow post resulted in a backlink from JohnChow.com, I got a trackback from a blog that regularly stole John Chow’s posts, including the review posts. So for the one John Chow post I ended up with two backlinks.
The moral is that if you’re writing a blog, and doing the right thing for your readers by providing a full feed, your content will get stolen someday. Being a bit proactive can turn the event into a benefit to your blog.