Blocking Right-Click Functionality On WordPress To Stop Content Theft? Not So Fast…

October 15, 2012 · 8 comments

in WordPress

Blocking Right-Click Functionality On WordPress To Stop Content Theft? Not So Fast…

wordpress logoWho Really Gets Hurt 
When You Block Right-Click? 

Content scrapers are thieves who make us want to hit them where it hurts!

But before you go setting up the electrified barbed wire fence, using anti-right-click plugins,  lets double-check that these will (a) be effective and (b) not have unacceptable collateral damage

Unfortunately, some bloggers are under the misguided notion that disabling right-click functionality actually blocks scrapers from stealing their content.

Plugins such as “Blog Protector” seem to feed the need for reassurance that we are safe… but what are they actually accomplishing?

Impact on Content Thieves

Most scraping tools operate by forcing the feed into full view (even if you posted an excerpt) and then taking the content from there. This is content that the anti-right-click plugin can not protect.  Other scrapers do actually make it to your blog, but process the page with all of the scripts blocked, thus giving themselves an easy way around the plugin. 

Not only do most scraper bots totally ignore the “block right click” utilities (and do it anyways) but most scrape from the feed which you can’t protect in the first place.

So, those guys we set out to stop… we didn’t even create a speedbump for!

Impact on Real Readers

The real truth is that all right-click-blocking does is annoy your normal reader who has many valid reasons to use right-click functionality.

Most of us take advantage of built in spell checkers (which depend on right click) and blocking this can mean that people will not leave a comment. Some of us also have browser based tools, on the right-click, that make it easier for us to share your content… that you surely don’t want to slap our hands for trying to use, do you?

How To Get Around Right-Click-Blocking On Sites You Frequent

Tired of sites blocking you from right clicking? There are dozens of add-ons, for the different browsers, that let you override their blocking of that function.

I hope by sharing this, that someone will see that the only people they’re actually harming are the people whose lives they should be making as enjoyable as possible.

This is just an example of one for Firefox:  http://nc.ddns.us/RightToClick/RightToClick.htm

But What About Those Pesky Thieves?

I understand that content thieves can make us all want to pull our hair out in aggravation! 

Here’s some posts that, if you so desire, you can take action against these bad boys:

The Definitive Guide to Blog Content Scraping & How to Stop It! (Probably the best post available currently)

Copyright Infringement – What Should You Do if Your Blog Post is Stolen? (Some really useful and sometimes heartbreaking stories in the comments)

Content Scrapers – How to Find Out Who is Stealing Your Content & What to Do About It

 Have you ever encountered a site that had right-click blocked? How did you feel about the user experience?

~ Kim ~
Simple Tech Tips For Marketing

PS: It’s probably worth noting that I take the opposite approach. I encourage republication of my content (as long as links aren’t broke). I don’t have time to slap down a bajillion spammers but I CAN make sure my content can help the people whose readers really could use it! (Separate from approved republishing, most posts on my site are scraped/stolen anywhere from 5 to 30 times each and have been so for a long time.)

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Kim Wende October 15, 2012 at 11:10 am

For me I don’t like it when I land on web pages that have the right click blocked it is very annoying. This is something I don’t plan on doing for my website either. Great article!

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Sherryl Perry October 15, 2012 at 12:43 pm

Great post Kim! I tried “Blog Protector” after the first time that I had an article stolen. It was when I was new to blogging but I had already met you online. You were kind enough to leave me a comment explaining to me exactly what you wrote here. Actually, I quoted your comment in the “Copyright Infringement – What Should You Do if Your Blog Post is Stolen?” article that you linked to above. (Thanks for that!).

I heartily agree with you that blocking the right-click functionality on your blog only creates an obstacle for your readers.
Sherryl Perry invites you to read…What Google Authorship Means for SEOMy Profile

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carbaug1 October 24, 2012 at 3:10 am

thanks for sharing this informationinitially that I had an content thieved. It was when I was new to running a blog but I had already met you on the internet. You were type enough to keep me a statement describing to me exactly what you had written here. Actually, I estimated your thoughts in the “Copyright Violation – What Should You Do if Your Weblog Publish is Stolen?” content that you connected to above.

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Nick Catricala October 24, 2012 at 10:24 am

Kim, this infomation of blocking right-click is something I though of it, but not much… but I noticed many people do it since at times I find something interesting to spark my imagination and when I right-click to copy the word or frase, I cannot… well, just write it down and use when required.

I also noticed that when I find out that someone block the right-click, I get a sense that is not pleasurable and some how see the people involved as not so nice.. and hardly go back to their site.. not certain why, and cannot coment more, but I know you get my meaning.

Thanks so much again for all you share with al of us.
nick

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Clint Butler October 24, 2012 at 5:36 pm

My personal opinion on is let them take it. Most of the scrapers that I have found taking my stuff don’t bother to remove the internal linking that I do with most posts and I am actually getting traffic from their sites.

I have enough to worry about rather than policing the internet for my posts. Now if it was a product that I worked really hard to create, that’s a different story.

I do have an exception to that rule however. Lets say I create an ebook about a traffic method that I am selling. I purposely go into the black hat forums under a fake name and share it in there.

I do that because my ebooks are loaded with affiliate links and links to my site. Free traffic and money. The best part of doing that is that I didn’t have to pay to promote my product.

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Kim Castleberry October 27, 2012 at 10:39 pm

I’ve not gone so far as to “seed” my products into there… but I certainly don’t go keeping them out of there usually either! Like you, I’m careful that it only benefits me if they are in circulation accidently!
Kim

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Kim Castleberry October 27, 2012 at 10:02 pm

Exactly Yorinda! That’s what we as visitors run into right clicking is blocked. It’s incredibly easy to forget that there are so many valid uses of that function!
Kim

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Sadie-Michaela Harris January 12, 2013 at 3:52 pm

Really enjoyed this post Kim, I am one of those people who does use a plugin on my site which disables right clicking and I did this to prevent content theft. The plugin was recommended to me by an industry professional. I’m about to read your recommended links have not been able to play the video as I’m working remotely form mobile and connection is far less than brilliant!

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