Are you sure? Really sure?


Yesterday I received an email from a publishing company informing me that a quote I was using on my blog was wrongly credited. It was a ‘Cease and Desist’ notice and the subject line said: ‘Copyright Infringement & Plagiarism’. It was not fun to read. Basically my post Doubt and Dreams

 included this quote: ‘Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will’ which was written by their client Suzy Kassem.  I found the quote online with credit given to someone else. I took that at face value.

Wrong thing to do.

The letter said ‘we are giving you a chance to correct it before a court order is initialized to pull down your site – and force you to compensate our writer for damages’


I took the quote down, updated it and gave Suzy Kassem credit.  I replied, told the publisher what I  had done and apologized.

I felt terrible about this. As a writer I would hate to have my material credited to someone else.  I think (while scary for me) the reaction and sternness of the email was on point. Good for her publisher for having her back like that!

Suzy Kassem is a talented writer and she deserves to receive credit for her work. In this case, the person being given credit doesn’t seem to exists and this is an ongoing issue for them.  I can’t imagine how frustrating that must be for Suzy.

This is a valuable lesson. In the future I’ll be much more careful in my posting.  I also thought it was a good idea to share my experience with you so that you could benefit from my mistake.

I’ll be a double-triple checker from here on out!

‘When you mess up…own it’ – My Mother

Happy Thursday~



56 thoughts on “Are you sure? Really sure?

  1. Nikki, I’ve often wondered about this. I’ve stumbled across another blogger that copied and pasted a block of text and one of my sketches without attributing me or backlinking to my blog. It was frustrating, I left a comment pointing out that bloggers “error” and the post (along with my comment) was removed. However, without the support of a vigilant publisher, we are often left with little meaningful recourse.

    Fortunately, the overwhelming majority of bloggers are like you. Writing and sharing with integrity, and when the rare mistake is made, you take action to correct it. This is one of the many reasons I continue to love blogging so much.

    You’re awesome Nikki!

    Liked by 6 people

    1. I had something similar happen to me Gabe. Instead of re-blogging my posts she would copy and paste my posts with her ideas throughout the post. I was really bothered by this. Like you I reached out and she stopped. I think she thought she was being respectful but I didn’t like it.

      Respect is the biggest thing we can offer each other as writers. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. With all the meme’s and the way one can just copy and paste any social media post, it is easy to think someone originally said or wrote something.
        So what is your tried and true method of searching and confirming that sort of thing?

        Liked by 1 person

        1. To be honest I was just looking online and normally making sure I could find it in several places all credited to the same person. Now….I will be much more careful and for the time being I think I’ll stick to books or articles so that I know I am correct.

          Liked by 1 person

  2. Hi Nikki,
    I have walked twice about issues like this. People right in horror stories similar to yours. Some are worse or they actually had to pay the fine. We are living society we are people think they can profit by suing when we mean no harm. I had a similar situation happened to me recently so I know it is no fun.
    Maybe you can check out my site. I offer blogging tips and writing tips. I blog over at I also host six blog parties a month where you could meet new readers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It was a scary thing to read but I totally understand why they were being so aggressive. A lot of people would just blow it off and move on, so being aggressive gets attention. I was truly sorry and fixed the issue immediately. That’s what I would want if it was my work. 🙂 Also..thanks for the invite. I get your emails. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Goodness! What’s even more frightening about all of this is that they’ll probably watch your blog closely now. Good for you to address it and rectify it when you learned of your error.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I use quotes on my blog and try to be sure they are correctly credited but when looking at quotes I have seen some attributed to different people on different sites. Thankfully, you received a notice from the author’s agent/publisher allowing you to correct the mistake. And thank you for this post…sharing your experience is helpful for many.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh Nikki, I can totally understand how gutted you would have felt. I take the quotes at face value too. It’s such an easy thing to do…
    I’m glad it was resolved without any further issues.
    Thank you so much for the warning. Very timely today.
    Di 💐✨

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Yikes! I don’t think I have posted a blog containing a quote yet (maybe a picture quote though?) will make sure in the future myself to double check before posting quotes. Sad society we live in when we can sue people over such stuff. I think it should be as long as you are not claiming content as your own, it should be okay. If you claim it as your own then yes it is plagiarism. If you mistakenly give the wrong person credit that is simply not your fault, especially with the internet now adays where people post and give the wrong credit all the time. Reminds me of that Abraham Lincoln joke that circled the internet not long ago. “Don’t believe everything you read on the internet because there is a picture with a quote next to it.” Abraham Lincoln. (I probably quoted that one even wrong, better sue me.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Wow, that is a harsh answer and while I understand their request to have it corrected, it’s strange that they started with such a threat. It would’ve been correct for a second letter but not the fir the first in my opinion. However, I applaud you for doing the right thing and thank you for sharing your experience!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I heard that you even have to be careful with pictures. Unless there yours. There are some sneaky people who put their shots on the free sites, then remove them. If you have used it you can be taken to court over it. I have made sure all my photos etc are my own. Some people are only in it for making money. A group I am one person was fined $5,000 for using a picture as i said.

    Liked by 1 person

I'd love to read your thoughts!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s