Another day, another rip-off

At first glance, Live Deviant looks like a real hardware site. Well, apart from its odd name, which isn't really that peculiar by the standards of its peers.

Live Deviant is brand new and only has three reviews on it so far, but I'm sure that in time it will grow...

Oh, wait a moment.

This review (archived here) looks a little familiar.

(The little shit's even hotlinking my images. Jeez.)

This review doesn't quite look like Live Deviant's own work, either. They weren't even clever enough to change the name of the site they stole it from, at the start of the third paragraph.

This graphic card review looks as if the professionals at Live Deviant wrote it themselves, though. You can tell, because it's written at a fifth grade level and Full of Capital Letters for Emphasis.

I bet the graphs in the card review are all ripped off, though; they've got dodgy "" badges pasted on them, but the rest of each image looks like the painfully recompressed work of some other site whose identity may soon be revealed in the comments.

(Those images aren't hotlinked - they're hosted on ImageShack. Always the mark of a professional site.)

What the hell goes on in somebody's head that leads them to believe people won't notice when they do stuff like this? Why go to all the trouble of getting hosting and making a site, and then destroy it all by copying content from well-known sources? Hotlinking images, even, so that the people you're stealing from can see you blinking like a beacon in their server stats?

(A reader actually pointed out the copied thermal paste article to me before I noticed it myself. That's usually the way these things come to my attention, because I have thousands and thousands of unpaid spies. Against whom dipwads like Live Deviant have no chance.)

I don't know whether the person in the whois information for Live Deviant is actually the guy responsible, but given the above idiocy I wouldn't be surprised if that was indeed his name, home address and phone number.

I was going to send a complaint to him, but obviously he doesn't care. Let's see what his hosting provider thinks of this.

(And there's more! This is ripped off from the BBC, and this is an Associated Press piece. This is just a press release, but it's got a "Written by Rakesh" byline as well.)

UPDATE: It's been more than a day now, and our favourite Deviants have elected to keep on trucking.

This at least has an AP byline on it. But it's also still allegedly "Written by Rakesh", who does not appear to be aware that you're not allowed to just plonk whole Associated Press pieces on your Web site if you don't pay them the (large!) subscription fee.

Similarly, you can't just put "Source: BBC" on the end of your copied article (complete with copied images, despite the famed surreality of almost all of the BBC's online illustrations...) and expect things to be all right now.

And there are, of course, plenty of other rip-offs. This is another from the BBC, and this rips off Time magazine, for instance.

16 Responses to “Another day, another rip-off”

  1. Zerotime Says:

    Hey, it worked for Todd Goldman.

    (Boom. Tish.)

  2. rip Says:

    I find rule 8 of the forums rules strangely hypocritical.

  3. AnonymousCoward574 Says:

    The first graphs numbers is surprisingly similar to this
    Also found this confused tip about Firefox

  4. Daniel Rutter Says:

    Well spotted, rip; the images are definitely lifted from Legion Hardware.

  5. Bedlam Says:

    Actually, Dan you should let them leave the goop article up. They've also cleverly left your Amazon affiliate links in, so you could end up making a little scratch from the deal. ;)

  6. Daniel Rutter Says:

    Re the Todd Goldman affair - apart from the fact that Goldman has money and can thus (in theory) just bully on through, art tracing (and related hackwork) is also relatively hard to spot. The spotter has to have already seen both artworks in order to make the connection.

    Straight text copying from Web sources, in contrast, is just plain moronic in this age of Google. It's amazing how many people don't know the first thing about how to cheat good.

    (It's been observed that, paradoxically, the set of skills you need to make plagiarised work seem to be your own is very much the same as, if not more advanced than, the set you need to do the damn work yourself.)

  7. nash Says:

    That site is gold.

    The high-quality editing, consistent and correct spell checking...

    I even like the fact that half the internal links go to different pages.

  8. Kagato Says:

    Not only is he hotlinking your images, he's actually linking to your images. You just have to mouse over the article to see nice links popping up in your status bar. Yeah, real good job of hiding his tracks there :)

  9. Matt Says:

    The Capitalization of various words In that graphic card review is Just bizarre.

    I'm now used to the Germans capitalizing all their nouns, and sometimes end up doing the same thing when I write English, but "Deviant" seems to have chosen words completely at random. Huh?

  10. livedeviant Says:

    Hello, I hve got to this link from my serverstats..
    all I can say is sorry for the copying thing.. To start.. I am very new to this technology stuff.. I need a start for now as I am a student. And about the info on those reviews (8800gtx) its a research of me and rewritten it. I actually dont know about those things I have read here.. about AP and BBC subscription stuff also. I have seen some sites where they put.. source : xxx and publish them in their site..
    So I thought no wrong with that.. and about your Thermal paste stuff, it was done out of ignorance..It was actually done by my friend (also didnt remove the hotlinks :( ).. an alias he uses of mine..
    I will remove the content now. Well Dan, If you need to talk anything mail me at will be glad to listen to any advices too.
    LD Admin.

  11. livedeviant Says:

    I need some clarification on this. I found the same article in some more sites.. I didn't know how could they copy that and that was also something that encouraged me.. huh. I don't to degrade or do some illegal stuff. All was out of ignorance. Hope someone could help me. THanks

  12. Daniel Rutter Says:

    > I didn’t know how could they copy that

    They have paid very large amounts of money for an Associated Press subscription. You haven't.

    (I think you actually can buy the rights to run single stories from the AP, if you want to; they cost about $US200 each.)

    If all you'd done was reprint AP stories under the impression that it was some sort of public domain news source, then I could believe your plea of ignorance.

    There is, however, no way in the world that anybody who's smart enough to set up a Web site - and a pretty good looking one, too - could possibly think it was OK to rip off stories from NUMEROUS sources, large and small. You'd have to have multiple personalities, one of which has an IQ of 30.

    So my working hypothesis is that you just figured that you could get away with it.

    And, heck, if you and your Web host were both located in some lawless Third World mudhole, you probably could.

    But you aren't, and they aren't, and so you can't.

    Take all of your pirated pages down, and do your own damn homework from now on.

  13. livedeviant Says:

    well. I'll surely do it dan. Thanks for sum pretty stuff.
    And.. about my smartness.. I can make a website up with some templates and workout.. But I really don't know about those copyright stuff. As I said I am a student of age 16, I just wanted to share some info with friends and also make some money to run it on my own not depending on my parents. I just wanted to tell you Dan though its personal. If you dont mind, can you talk to me on IM? I would be happy to learn some startups from you

  14. Lazlo Says:

    This is fascinating.

  15. Daniel Rutter Says:

    At some point between when last indexed them in mid-2008 and now, in mid-2010, the business geniuses behind packed it in. The site is now a parked domain.

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