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TickleMantis

Finally, I Was Plagiarized

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Itís probably happened before.

Twenty-two years is a long time to put your work online with some relative level of popularity (if I do say so myself!) and not have anyone copy it. Chances are itís happened before, only I was never aware of it until a couple of weeks ago. Or made aware of it, I should say. A big thank you to TMF member vootvoot for that, by the way. Kind soul that vootvoot is, they directed me to the dastardly DeviantArt fiend whoíd stolen my work.


TonyIM is the personís name. You may think it uncouth to name and shame, but the way I figure it this person shamelessly marked my work as their own for almost two years. TonyIM took the compliments, took the Ďlikesí. TonyIM can take the consequences too. And weíre not talking a stolen idea here folks, this person straight-up, blatantly, copy and pasted an entire story. Perhaps the worst part, other than the outright thievery, was that TonyIM didnít even bother editing the piece. It was one of my older works, filled with far more spelling mistakes and grammar errors than readers must endure from me these days. What they did do was change the main characterís name and rework their own little intro in for a couple of paragraphs, but after that? Oh yeah, my work, word for word, mistake for mistake.

So the first thing I do is file a DMCA notice through DeviantArt. Fortunately, a very easy process. Easy to prove my side of the story too, as it were, with a link dating back over eighteen years. Eighteen years.. Then, because I wanted to see what TonyIM had to say for themselves, I commented on their post (MY post). I said, more or less, this is my work, take it down. Tonyís response? They were ďinspiredĒ by the story.

If you want to be inspired by my work, more power to you. Iíve certainly been inspired by a wealth of tickle-fiction writers over the years. Copy and pasting someone elseís story and claiming it as your own? That is not inspiration, friends. That is theft. Instead of removing the story, Tony followed this flimsy claim of inspiration up by adding a link to the original story at the bottom of the post. Of course Iíd already filed the DMCA notice before any of this, so any action (or inaction) besides taking the story down completely only served to make Tony look like more of a parasite than they already did.

Woah there ĎMantis, you might say, thatís some pretty harsh language. Those of you whoíve messaged me or conversed with me over the last 2+ decades probably, hopefully, know me as a pretty relaxed, easy going kind of fellow. Well, on the off chance you havenít worked this out already, people who steal other peopleís art really piss me off. Itís lazy, itís predatory, itís deceptive. You seek clout you never earned and is meaningless as a result. Fuck people who steal other peopleís work. Fuck TonyIM.

On a brighter note, since TonyIM did exactly what someone of their nature was bound to do, the DMCA notice went into action a few days later. The post was removed and Tony received a message from DevitantArt about their infraction. I, of course, have heard nothing else on the matter, nor do I expect to.

On the one hand itís a kind of compliment, in a twisted way, to have someone feel your work is good enough for them to claim. Their best and possibly only shot at receiving a kind word for ďtheirĒ creation. Any positivity about plagiarizing begins and ends there, though. With this in mind, to the TonyIMs of the world, if you like my work and are genuinely inspired, by all means write a story of your own. If youíre not keen to write it yourself, thereís no shortage of writers willing to take commission. Your idea is a good one, you donít need to resort to thievery to get it out in the world.

Itís probably happened before. Itíll probably happen again.

All the best,

ĎMantis
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    Wow! Man, sorry that happened to you. I can feel your anger and you have every right to do so. Believe me, if ANY of my work is plagiarized, there will be "wrath of God" type stuff. I will not tolerate any of my work I toiled over to be used by someone else and they claim it is great. I hope those that are reading this blog, if you recognize any of my work, please let me know.

    Us writers put a lot of TIME, ENERGY, EFFORT and PASSION into creating stories. It is not easy to do. Just like when tickling videos are pirated, the producers want to go scorch earth. I want them too. You don't want to see your efforts stolen and someone else benefits from it. I have seen some custom videos that I paid for pirated. That actually pisses me off, because I had to pay a large sum of money, and the producer also lost money. Man, what the hell is wrong with people?
    Hahaha, happened to me too~ It's okay, Internet is both Tortuga and the Delta Quadrant combined.

    Your stories are awesome, by the way