I wanted to address giving credit for others work in the blogging world. I think when you are starting out that you may not be sure how to give credit, I know for me it was a learning process and not always an easy one. Regardless if it is for deals, recipes, or tips you need to give credit when credit is due. Let’s start with deals. If you are a frugal blogger and you find a deal on another blog it is important to give that blogger credit for their work. If you give credit that does not give you the authority to copy and paste the deal word for word. There is nothing more infuriating than to see one of my deals posted on another blog and they copied and pasted it word for word. How do I know they copied and pasted? Formatting, punctuation or even personal comments are still in tact. What is even worse is when another blogger copies and pastes and doesn’t even bother to give credit.
I have bloggers who send me deals that I already have posted or the same deal is sitting in my inbox from the company itself. Do I need to give that blogger credit? NO! I don’t give credit unless it is truly a deal that I wouldn’t find on my own and that is a HOT DEAL or a COMPLEX DEAL. I also normally don’t post deals that are too complex. I also don’t post deals that I don’t believe to be ethical even if they are working. This goes back to the belief that you are in the business of YOU! I have to ultimately answer to myself.
So, do I give credit for deals? Absolutely, when I see a deal that I would not have found otherwise (for example not a free sample from Walmart.com) I do give credit and I appreciate it when a blogger gives me credit in return. When you give credit you should either link directly to the post you are giving credit to or the blogs home page. In addition it is my belief that you credit the source not the one who posts it. So if I see a deal on blog A but they site blog B as the source I also site Blog B as the source.
Should you send out deals to other bloggers? You can, however note that just because you send it doesn’t mean you are going to get credit for it. I do send out HOT deals however I don’t send them often. I personally get 500 emails daily so I know that it can easily irritate bloggers to over send. I do have a group of bloggers that I network with and welcome the occasional find that they send me. However, when I was at Camp Blogaway it was suggested to only send 2-3 posts a year to other bloggers.
If you are posting a recipe as long as you give the author credit then you are ok to post it. If you make 2 MAJOR changes to the recipe then you do not have to site the source, however it is always a nice appreciation. You can never use another person’s content and call it your own or post it and give credit to it without their permission. I write a lot of content pieces and I often have bloggers ask me for guest posts or if they can use them and with permission I often allow them too. Another item I want to mention is grocery matchups. They take a LONG time to do and using them in full is not ok. You can select your highlights and link up to them but using someone’s matchup in full is not a good idea. In my opinion I treat a matchup as content. I know when I started blogging I did not know that it was not ok to do this so I wanted to share that with you.
Please feel free to share your thoughts here on giving credit. I feel this is an important piece of the blogging 101 series and that is why I chose to include it. If we learn from our mistakes then the mistake was not a loss but a life lesson. I harbor no grudges and that is not why I wrote this post it is just to help all bloggers.