Is Plagiarism the New Internet Business Model?

Ok, a quick diversion from the diet series since it seems to be stalling anyhow and I can’t figure out how to get it back on track. I’ve been sitting on this a little while but figured this was as good a time as any to cause a true shit-storm.

Oh yeah, just to avoid the inevitable backlash, trolling and bullshit, I’m turning comments off for this and my next blog entry.

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Now, it’s no big news to say that there aren’t a whole lot of new idea in the world of diet and training. There’s an old joke to the effect that “Anything you’re doing now, Grimek did it.” John Grimek was a lifter way back when and the implication is that there is nothing new under the sun.

Basically true. There are only so many ways to mix up the macronutrients to make a diet, there are only so many different basic ways to train. There are damn few new ideas to be had.

Which means that, in general, everybody simply steals from each other when it comes to ideas about training, diet, etc.

This is normal, this is fine; I do it and so does everybody else and I’m not in a position to criticize that specifically.

The intellectually honest ones will actually give credit to the person they’re stealing from; I don’t see a lot of intellectually honest folks in this industry. I try to give credit where it’s due; if I steal a good idea I try to note who I stole it from.

But at some point stealing an idea (credited or not) goes a step further to plagiarism, using someone else’s words, essentially unchanged because you either can’t (because you’re too stupid) or won’t (because you’re just that fucking lazy) write it yourself.

A few cases in point:

1. A little while back, apparent special needs child Jimmy Smith (not to be confused with ‘The Thinker” James Smith) got busted for ripping off one of Craig Ballantyne’s sales page completely. This was made obvious by the fact that, in the affiliates section, he forgot to change Craig’s name to his own. Rather than own up to it, he tried to blame a foreign webmaster.

You can’t make this shit up, folks.

2. Jason Ferrugia was caught ripping material off of Mark Twight’s website (Twight trained the guys for the movie 300) and trying to pass it off as his own work at Elite Fitness Systems. When notified of this, EFS took the article down promptly so I can’t really link you to it.

Now, I’ll admit that I’m out of the loop on this stuff, I don’t keep up with the internet marketing stuff for the most part. I have this strange thing I do where I’d rather spend my time learning new things about physiology, nutrition and training than how to make better sales pages. This attitude is clearly not shared by many in the industry who would appear to spend more time figuring out how to make sales pages that convert than putting out quality product.

In any case, it leads me to wonder if Ryan Lee released a new marketing DVD to the effect of “Since you guys are too lazy and incompetent to come up with your own material, I’m going to show you how to just plagiarize someone else’s work AND MAKE MAD CASH DOING IT.”?

It wouldn’t particularly surprise me at this point in the game. It’s gotten that bad.

But frankly, the above didn’t bother me that much because it didn’t affect me other than to make me laugh a bit.

But a more recent case did bother me, because it involves my work directly.

The shit will really hit the fan when you see how Alwyn Cosgrove plagiarized my Ultimate Diet 2.0 for his Warp Speed Fat Loss book.

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