|A screenshot of sunheriyaadein's blog page|
The last one day has been a colossal waste of time for me—courtesy a blogger called sunheriyaadein whom I consider more a copycat than a blogger of any standard. I felt I must record this rather unpleasant experience—that of being plagiarized from, which I accidentally discovered—loudly and clearly with everyone out there. Putting this in writing clearly on my blog, will, I hope, in some measure, deter the copycats prowling on the Internet, who just copy and paste text.
Yesterday was a laidback Friday, and I happened to be browsing a few blogs on old films when, in the Bhooli Bisri Sunheri Yaadein blog, I chanced upon a recent write-up (August 3, 2010) on Mohammed Rafi, whose death anniversary it was on July 31. As I glanced through it, this ode to Rafi started to sound and look uncomfortably familiar in places. I realized I was reading my own writing from one year back.
This blogger (whose real name is a mystery, and who has not listed any email where she can be contacted—I am tired of searching!), had blatantly lifted excerpts, verbatim, from my post on Mohammed Rafi (that I wrote aound his last death anniversary for the passionforcinema blog on July 29, 2009, later republished in my blog here on July 31, 2009) and passed it off nicely as her own! My first reaction was sheer anger and outrage.
Of course, I could give benefit of doubt and deem this to be inadvertent; however, this is too verbatim a case. Anyway, I quickly ran a trial version of Copyscape through my imitator’s posting, and, sure enough, Copyscape caught four clear instances—the exact ones that I had found. (I have recorded them below.)
I am more worldly-wise now and have installed Copyscape as a deterrent, and have become more aware of the importance of protecting one’s intellectual property, and this cannot be stressed enough. I left a long comment with links to the plagiarized passages on my imitator’s blog, but that is “awaiting moderation,” and so I won’t be surprised if it never shows up there. So, I am left with no choice but to post all the details here.
Looking from the other side: I never really imagined someone would find me worth copying from! So it is a compliment, perhaps. Still, although imitation is the best form of flattery, as the saying goes, it is just plain annoying to see someone else stealing one's thoughtfully-crafted paragraphs. Any honest writer will vouch for that.
For your convenience, I have listed below the shamelessly plagiarized excerpts, including the Copyscape links to them. This is what the plagiarist's blog posting looks like when I write this rant. Here goes:
1. My original: So much is written about Rafi (1924-1980) that I don’t quite know where to begin and what new to say really. I am stumped. It should just suffice if I say that Rafi was one of the most versatile singers in the history of Hindi film music. His pan-Indian (and beyond) appeal seems to get only stronger with time. From the doleful Jugnu (1947) to the patriotic Shaheed (1948) to the classical Baiju Bawra (1952) to the effervescent Mr. and Mrs. 55 (1955) to the regal Raj Hath (1956) to the poetic Pyaasa (1957) to the meltingly romantic Barsaat Ki Raat (1960)—phew! the list is endless—Rafi sang it all. And more.
The copy: So much is written about Rafi (1924-1980) that I don’t quite know where to begin and what new to say really. Rafi was one of the most versatile singers…From the doleful Jugnu to the patriotic Shaheed to the classical Baiju Bawra to the effervescent Mr. and Mrs. 55 to the regal Raj Hath to the poetic Pyaasa to the meltingly romantic Barsaat Ki Raat - phew! the list is endless—Rafi sang them all. And more. http://www.copyscape.com/?s=98914592341806&sms_ss=google
|Screenshot of copied excerpt 1 (highlighted)|
The copy: In his earlier years, before he had fully come into his own, Rafi sang for Ghulam Mohammed (Naushad’s protégé) a lovely duet with Lata. This one is picturised on Rehman and Madhubala and I love this for lots of reasons: Madhubala’s striking beauty, Rafi’s deep, powerful rendition, peppy music and young and dashing Rehman!
|Screenshot of copied excerpt 2 (highlighted)|
The copy: This is Rafi singing for Ajit. in the good old days before he turned into a villian on screen. Bombay—that teeming metropolis, teeming then in the 1950s just as it is teeming today—the land of opportunities, sapno ka shehar—was masterfully captured by lyricist Prem Dhawan to composer Hansraj Behl’s tune. http://www.copyscape.com/?s=61913581131803&sms_ss=google
|Screenshot of copied excerpt 3 (highlighted)|
The copy: He could convincingly slip under the skin of characters that were poles apart: he sang for the brooding Dilip Kumar in Deedar with the same ease with which he lent his voice to a frolicking Johnny Walker in C.I.D. And it is so difficult for the listener to decide where Rafi excels more and who his voice suits the best! http://www.copyscape.com/?s=49254971131804&sms_ss=google
|Screenshot of copied excerpt 4 (highlighted)|
End of everyone’s waste of time. We all have better things to do.