Quoting, Sourcing and Linking: A word for all bloggers

I remember working on this not too long ago. It’s perplexing when you take a look around the digital industry and I see a lot of writers constantly nitpicking through their writings. Remember the better days of formal academic research? When everything we wrote in our thesis was always checked and double checked for plagiarism. It made every writer on every subject be very careful when handling any content. Anything they read off any source, especially off the internet was carefully marked and recorded and then cited. Certainly we saw that side surface in the lighter article writing.

What did blogging change?

Quite a lot actually. The advent of blogging is more like personalized writing so blogs never promoted actual research material but more personalized opinions which the online community could enjoy reading. And as the marketing folks understood this tool’s potential the writing became more technical, the jargon became mixed and we have today’s world. The thing is with specialized content and technical information available on blogs, research work has certainly become easier because chances are that you will find a lot more information.

I mean really, go through the formal report of a college student and you will find more citations coming in from website urls than book and scholarly references. And that should tell you a lot about the content matter of blogs and how they have evolved.

Why is that important?

Because now we have an active section of blog writers and runners who are perfectly content with being a bit more neglectful of the content they post on their blogs. By being neglectful I mean that content that might be taken from another source is more likely to be found without being credited to the source. And I’ll be very point blank in saying that this is damaging to bloggers, blogs and marketers in the long run. Very simply put, no one is very appreciative when you try to claim content as your own when you have really read it off a piece of an article from another place.

But I will run a few more reasons why quoting your sources is important.

Google

Google’s content ranking algorithms are always evolving. That’s a fact. Google rewards content on its relevancy and its quality. That’s also a fact. Now by quality we here mean that not only does Google look if we are covering the topic properly but if we are also being through in checking for its sources. Similar syntax checking is not exactly difficult via certain algorithms so we should at least safely assume that Google does check what we write.

There is also the comments section which we love to install via our WordPress templates right? And we can be rest assured that Google uses the content on those comments section to further calculate the rank and worth of a page.

The community

People who read your content also love reading original things. The follow the writer who can think outside the box and with blogging we love the kind of online recognition that it brings to us. From a business perspective though, using content without crediting the source is exactly what can reduce your credibility in front of your readers.

Once that happens your business potential gets shot down automatically.

The verdict here is as clear as day really. Take as much content as you want to borrow from your neighboring blogs; with the amount of content present online, it is not possible to be completely original all the time. However ensure that you credit the proper source by including its page as a hyperlink in your article or mentioning the source writer properly by name.

Giving the source via the link is advantageous because it lets the source article be aware of your content and your presence too, allowing you to grow your network with them and their contacts and every SEO manual will tell you how networking between digital businesses is important for branding. Keep those blogs running and keep the content coming: just make sure you know who you read off of and include the credits in your article. You’re good to go.

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