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An Open Message to Sales Trainers, Authors and Experts

To: Sales Trainers, Authors and Experts

If you haven’t been keeping up with the Bob Beck story this week, it’s worth learning about.  Here are four posts to get you started:

There are two important things to learn from this:

  1. If you are legitimately creating your own content based upon your insights, research, experiences and unique perspectives, you a target for having your intellectual property stolen and used for the financial gain of someone else.  I’m certain you know this isn’t new in the sales training industry.
  2. If you are on the other side of the equation and you pirate, plagiarize or just plain steal what others have created, and represent it as your own, you’re likely going to get caught.

Here is a tip for those of you who want to uncover where your content may be republished on the Internet:

  1. Sign up for Google Alerts here: http://www.google.com/alerts
  2. Select a unique phrase of a few words from each piece of content you’d like to track. 
  3. Do a Google search on the phrase, enclosing it in double quotes.  The quotes are very important.  Here are two of my phrases: “quantified business value attributed to each”  And, “a little Miller Heiman, a little solution selling and a little Neil Rackham.”  (Note: This step will let you know where those phrases might have already been used.)
  4. See if the phrase is in fact unique.  If it isn’t select another one.
  5. If someone copies your content (which contains that unique phrase) and posts in on the Internet, the likelihood is that it will be indexed by Google. If it is, you will receive an email.

Finally:  If you find an instance where someone has plagiarized your content and can prove it, as I Geoffrey (on behalf of others), Charlie and I have done, provide me with the details privately.  (Don’t just send me the link.  Save the actual webpage containing the plagiarized material to your computer, in case the culprit decides to remove that content. In Internet Explorer it’s File, Save As, MHT format – Web Archive-Single File.)  Perhaps someone can comment on how to do that with Firefox.

I’m going to do what I can to help rid the industry of those that practice purposeful copyright infringement.  Will you help?