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June 7, 2021
A few months ago, it came to my attention that a fellow blogger and “web designer” completely ripped me off. She copied my design site word for word, copied the colors, branding, and fonts, and basically just plagiarized my entire business. I was shocked and felt like I was punched in the gut. I’ve been working hard to grow this business for eight years and for someone in this space to duplicate my hard work and claim it as their own is extremely hurtful and just plain wrong.
But instead of dwelling on it, letting it get to me, or even confronting the plagiarizer and causing myself unneeded stress, I took the opportunity to rebrand and update my design site. When I shared a quick snippet of this experience on Instagram stories, my inbox was flooded with replies from bloggers experiencing the same thing from other bloggers. I couldn’t believe it! People are stealing ideas left and right, and I find it incredibly disturbing. We are a community of women who are constantly undervalued in this industry. We should be lifting each other up instead of ripping each other off. We create content to inspire others, but there is a huge difference between being inspired and sharing your own twist (with credit!!! Please!!) and just straight up stealing ideas.
It’s so incredibly important that no matter the industry, we support each other and respect the work of others. Copying someone else’s work and passing it off as your own is not a way to find success. Because when the time comes to actually do the job, you won’t be able to deliver that other person’s work. And that’s exactly why I didn’t confront the person who plagiarized me. She can try all she wants, but she will never be me. She will never deliver what I deliver. And I will continue to be an open book and help other bloggers whenever I can.
Have you ever experienced plagiarism in your career? How did you handle it?
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Photo by Ryan Carpenter.