Content Theft in the Desert

Photo from

Yes, even in the wild backroads of Nevada you can find organizations and people stealing content from little-known websites and using it on their own, without even as much as a thank you or a link. This latest offense was brought to attention by Forgotten Nevada. First, take a look at this page on the Forgotten Nevada site, about the history of Williams Station, the Pony Express stop where the Paiute Indian War of 1860 started. Then, look at this page on the Silver Springs Chamber of Commerce website. It’s pretty much a direct lift of the Forgotten Nevada article, even down to the photo they use of Lake Lahontan.

Certainly, the good folks at the Chamber, or at K & J Computers who built the site, know that it’s a big boo boo to lift content from other sites and use it on yours. And that even if you do, it’s at least courtesy to give credit and a link back to the original author, not to just pass it off as your own. But that’s what’s happening here.

We who live on the web know that this is one of the hazards. There is no way to truly protect content from being taken and used in other ways. That’s why a lot of us have stopped fighting it, and even embraced philosophies like Creative Commons, which encourage others to use our work. But we always expect something back in exchange. Whether it’s money, if the content is being used in a commercial work, or just a thanks and a credit line. “This article originally published on“. Is that too hard to do? Apparently so.

Forgotten Nevada has already been in contact with the offenders and is hoping to see some results soon.

By the way, the photo I used for this article is from Forgotten Nevada. See how if you click on it it goes to his site? That’s the right way to do it. And the photo is not of the Williams Station in question, but of Desert Station on the other side of the lake. I just thought it was a cool picture. There’s a lot to like about Forgotten Nevada. If you like ghost towns, you should for sure go check it out.


  1. Thanks for the connection to “forgotten nevada”… there’s apparently quite a bit of pretty cool photos over there. Some of the stuff from “Berlin” (for example) is REALLY good.

  2. This isn’t terribly surprising I hate to say. Though it is hard to tell if the computer company is responsible for the actual content theft, mainly because they only say “design by” and not “maintained by” but I would certainly hope that a single business would more likely make this error than a chamber of commerce.

    Hopefully this matter will be resolved amicably and someone like me will not be necessary.

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