stealing is dumb


so by some odd chance, i stumbled upon a blog tonight where i found a post that looked super familiar to me. perhaps TOO familiar! i discovered someone had essentially stolen my diy post and gave me no sort of credit. i know this happens everyday on the internet and that most people on the internet just suck, and i don’t know if it’s in poor taste to post about it myself – but i don’t really know what to do in a situation like this.

once i saw a girl on instagram had stolen a photo i’d taken and claimed it as her own. why? how is that fun for her?! but that’s a different story all together.

it’s really really really hard to come up with original crafts and diys and posts by myself. i probably spend 99% of my blogging time just trying to come up with original ideas. and while i scour the internet and other blogs and pinterest for inspiration, i can’t imagine doing someone else’s diy without giving them any credit. at least take your own damn approach or make up your own how-to steps — come ON. or just say i was inspired by so and so.

i guess i won’t show you the two identical posts with identical photos and basically identical text but i really want to. but i’ll take the high road.

unlike SOME people!

+ if you’ve ever had experiences like this – please advise!

+ also i hate getting all serious on here, but once in a while i have to. sorry i know it’s lame. i’ll be fun tomorrow.

photo via

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  1. boo to them : (
    also, claiming someone else’s instagram photo as their own – that’s just strange. what’s wrong with people?

  2. Urgh to this so much. Well done for taking the high road, I can imagine it would be super tempting to name and shame. You should definitely contact them and tell them to remove it immediately – if they don’t then maybe its time to name and shame. No one has ever stolen one of my diy posts, but someone did steal my instagram photo once. I called them out on it in a comment and they blocked me!! I was well and truly outraged, haha.

    1. haha omg. i called the instagrammer out and flagged the photo for removal – it seemed to go away pretty quickly! so i ended up writing the magazine site the post was contributed to and they immediately took down the post and felt super guilty about it. so i’m glad i wrote! thanks claire 🙂

  3. Daisy Rivas says:

    Is this in reference to the breaking bad drink featured on a beautiful mess? I think that’s really in poor taste. I love your blog and keep doing what you’re doing, enough people will give you credit for your wonderful and creative ideas to make up for the lame people that don’t!

    1. I noticed that too and thought it was pretty wrong of them not to credit. What’s the chance that both bloggers thought of blue rock candy stirrers on their own?

      I’ve also seen this blogger/model in NYC steal other people’s DIY ideas. Even though it’s not my idea she’s taking, it still infuriates me. I wanted to say something but I’d rather avoid conflict…

      1. it’s actually not about that post — but i saw that and thought it was a little strange too! i don’t see why it’s so hard to just say “we saw this”. anytime i’m brainstorming a diy i try to see if it’s been done before!

  4. I hope it wasn’t me, seriously, I totally stole your shelves and put them.on my wall…
    You do have really good content.

    1. haha no rosalie! it’s not about you!! i think your blog concept is adorable.

  5. Only yesterday I found your blog and was I in awe over your fun and sometimes brilliant ideas. And sharing them, handing them out for free!! What a beautiful mind must reign over this blog I thought, and immediately signed up for daily surprises.
    My first note from you is this one, and it hurts somehow.
    You are right with everything you say, and it’s ok to express your frustration. But you should not have to explain how hard it is for you too, to come up with ideas all the time. Even if it were easy, they are yours, it is your talent, and you are very generous in sharing.
    To your copycat: It cannot have been your dream to get anywhere by copying somebody else, honestly. You lost it.
    And Molly, you are doing great!
    Looking forward to tomorrow 🙂

    1. aww thank you so much wilma. you’re right, i shouldn’t have to explain how hard i try — but don’t you think that earns me a couple pity points?!

  6. To go along with your choice of taking the high road, I suggest contacting the person directly – and privately – to let him/her know you discovered his/her plagiarism/theft and ask for the post’s removal from his/her blog. Hopefully you won’t receive any push back. Good luck.

    1. thanks patricia – i contacted the mag site it was on and they took it down immediately. i think no one wants people to think they’re into that kinda thing.

  7. I don’t think that’s ever happened to me (which is weird, because my content is AWESOME), however if someone were to plagiarize me, I think the only logical response would be a full-on cyber attack. But that’s just me.

    1. hahah – i know, my first instinct was to do that! i even mocked up a side by side of the posts themselves to put on here but decided i’m not into making enemies. i do love gossiping though, so it was a tough decision!!

  8. It definitely sucks! I was just the victim of that on Etsy. This other seller copied ALL of my premade templates and listed them as hers – she only changed the headers! Not only that but she left a div in the CSS that was unique to me & my brand, so I knew for certain that she literally copied & pasted my work and claimed it as hers.

    1. omg. i hope you contacted etsy and got her stuff removed. now that we’ve opened our etsy shop we’re super afraid of that happening too! i hope we can be as successful as you on there!

  9. ugh im sorry. i’ve encountered this a few times, and once i actually confronted the blogger (they were using their own photos, but it was very clearly my project/they even used some of my text verbatim) and was met with a “what are you gonna do about it, huh??” which really sucked.

    i get that at this point original content is far and few between, but it is TOTALLY OKAY AND ENCOURAGED to say “inspired by” or “i got the idea from this post and this is how i executed it”. One of the biggest blogs out there is notorious for stealing and not crediting, and i actually think they pilfered one of your ideas recently. Its all just a total bummer.

    1. jeez. i would have been LIVID. that’s the point when i would name names and get reaaaal nasty.

      i saw that post and was basically just confused. that post of mine got quite a lot of traffic so i’m assuming they had seen it first… and i had no idea they were notorious for that! with the amount of content they post i’m not surprised. it’s really really lame that it would be anyones instinct.

      i noticed your rock bookends were basically just recreated and had the same thought. it was a brilliant idea but give a girl some damn credit. it doesn’t take away from anything.

  10. wow. the balls on some of these people.

    i know that lawyers are expensive, but i would really want to nail them with a copyright infringement suit. it’s just so brazen of them, and a strongly worded letter written on legal letterhead might be just enough to get them to slow their roll. you should see if there’s a law school in your area that has students do legal counseling as a walk-in clinic type service. they might be able to help you write up a cease and desist letter/a letter that basically says “either take it down immediately or pay me x dollars for the right to use it and add a credit to me.”

    in any event, i just found your blog yesterday through ms. zandi’s and i have to say that you both have really inspiring, original content. you should be super proud of your corner of the internet, and your dignified response to something that would make me want to throw a temper tantrum.

    1. that is so sweet taryn. thank you! i did throw a temper tantrum, it was just in my apartment that night haha. oh my boyfriend is a lucky guy!

      i would totally do the law thing but the mag they contributed to the post to was super gracious about the situation. if they hadn’t been — heads would have rolled. maybe.

  11. I agree with Erin! Full-on cyber attack! I HATE stuff like this. I applaud you for taking the high road, but would be TOTALLY behind you if you named names, too. 😉

    1. i know, lindsay – that would have been way more fun to read about too!!

  12. I agree that cyber-copying is frustrating and wrong, and I agree that it’s appropriate to contact the abuser and ask for removal or credit.

    But it’s worth remembering that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and karma will eventually even the score. True talent always shines through, and wannabe cheaters will reap what they sow. Just be who you are, and keep shining.

    1. aw thanks diane. it’s true. i’d hope people would build up a bad rep eventually and readers would notice.

  13. Grrrr….I’ve had this happen before and it is terribly frustrating. I always just email the person and tell them how I’m feeling and explain what copyright is. I’ve had positive results doing that. It’s so silly becuase they could have just said “inspired by…” and linked to you and then to be really polite, not include all the steps so that traffic came back to you. I’m ok with that on my blog as both parties get a share of the love.

    It does happen that sometimes we all have the same ideas, but it would be completely remarkable if we all had the same words in the copy! Your work is beautiful, original and you have every right to feel angry. I wonder sometimes if big blogs especially are so pressured to produce work they ‘borrow’ thinking no-one will notice. Well, as reader’s we do!. Don’t let it discourage you Molly – you are amazing.

    1. thank you so much rachel!!

      my first situation of this was when my campaign rast was done by a much bigger blog and they barely mentioned me as just being the source of the hardware they’d found. (i’d found.) so i wrote them and said um could you give me some credit? you just reused my idea exactly. they did more or less.

      i think this is just what happens. it’s easier to copy an idea than expand on it.