More threads by jerufoxxr

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Hi there! I hope somebody can relate to this. We have been working with a lawyer's website for some time now, receiving articles primarily from a publishing company specialized in specific legal practices such as social security or personal injury. However, it has come to our attention that these articles have been replicated and published on numerous other lawyers' websites. In light of this, I strongly suggest reworking the content to ensure its uniqueness while delivering even more value compared to the original material. Would you also recommend the same course of action or opt for republishing the unchanged content?
 
There seem to be a few services for lawyers where they can pay for content for their blogs, without realising the issue of duplicate content. You may not allowed to rewrite this based on the agreement they have with the people producing the content.
 
Hi @jerufoxxr, that is a good question. So, if the content is 100% (or close to it) as what is being used on other website domains and provided by a publishing company, then it is essentially considered syndicated content per Google's guidelines. Which in that case, that page content should be flagged to "no-index". If not, Google will figure out it is duplicated content and either won't index it or may actually flag one of the other lawyer's page/blog with the same content as the canonical (cross-domain canonicalization). In rare cases, Google will penalize the site but you'd have to be publishing a lot of duplicate/scraped content. Here's a good article covering Google's guidelines on syndicated/duplicate content.

If you are not publishing unique content and simultaneously unable to gain the benefit of it being indexed, unless you have a huge following of organic visitors coming to the website to read the articles, there really isn't any benefit to using the purchased content. Your client would be much better off having you write the content and if you aren't comfortable doing that, I'd suggest getting a list of numerous subjects that your client wants to have written and submit those writing jobs to a place like Upwork. FWIW, with our attorneys, we ALWAYS email the content to them and have them reply with an approval and/or have them make any edits needed.
 
There seem to be a few services for lawyers where they can pay for content for their blogs, without realising the issue of duplicate content. You may not allowed to rewrite this based on the agreement they have with the people producing the content.

Thank you for your response! The client did not explicitly state the existence of an agreement with the publishing agency regarding content rewriting. However, they did mention that the practice manual they paid for authorized them to use the content on their website. I may need to confirm with the client if there are any binding agreements in place.
 
Hi @jerufoxxr, that is a good question. So, if the content is 100% (or close to it) as what is being used on other website domains and provided by a publishing company, then it is essentially considered syndicated content per Google's guidelines. Which in that case, that page content should be flagged to "no-index". If not, Google will figure out it is duplicated content and either won't index it or may actually flag one of the other lawyer's page/blog with the same content as the canonical (cross-domain canonicalization). In rare cases, Google will penalize the site but you'd have to be publishing a lot of duplicate/scraped content. Here's a good article covering Google's guidelines on syndicated/duplicate content.

If you are not publishing unique content and simultaneously unable to gain the benefit of it being indexed, unless you have a huge following of organic visitors coming to the website to read the articles, there really isn't any benefit to using the purchased content. Your client would be much better off having you write the content and if you aren't comfortable doing that, I'd suggest getting a list of numerous subjects that your client wants to have written and submit those writing jobs to a place like Upwork. FWIW, with our attorneys, we ALWAYS email the content to them and have them reply with an approval and/or have them make any edits needed.

Hi Jeff! Thank you for sharing your thoughts on this. Yeah, we are also trying to write our own articles and submit them to the client for review and approval; however, there are times that they want to publish their own to save money on the writer's costs.

IMHO, publishing other people's work is a waste of time and effort, but sometimes the clients are the ones to make the call. While we can't control what they choose to do, we still ensure quality content is being produced for them. Sometimes, I want to go over my call of duty to make sure all content we publish is unique and high-quality.
 

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