As we learned with the Lean Startup method, users and prospects feedback play a big role in a startup success.
One of the worries some of our prospects told us are the legal aspects of the curated content. They formulated it in a lot of ways, but basically, what they wanted to ask us was:
Am I going to be legally punished by using content from other people?
The magical answer to this question is: It depends.
Yes, I also hate when someone say this magical word and vanishes in that mysterious aura of wise.
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Many people agree that using curated content can be a great and fast way to improve your online image. Finding good content and forwarding it, always adding a point of view can be a time-saving solution and end up in good results.
Websites like the Huffington Post and Business Insider are great on using curated content, and they move around a lot of traffic through their webs and social media channels.
The thing is, to keep curation legal, there’s a few rules that must be always observed when using other people’s content.
#1: Always quote and link the original source
This is a no-brainer, right? You don’t want to be seen as a thief, plagiarist, or anything like that. What you do want is to appear as savvy, updated and an insider of your industry.
Have you tried to write a blog post? Do you remember how it was when you had to hand papers at school? It wasn’t so easy, right?
The author worked a lot to craft you that content. And if you’re sharing it, it’s because you find it useful/interesting/entertaining. The author sure deserve his credit. So never forget to quote and add the link to the original source. The author won’t see you as a *** thief, but as a friendly admirer and you’ll probably send traffic to his site, where s/he makes money. And everybody is happy.
Quoting is ok. It’s Fair Use. Never stop quoting and linking.
Hint: When you use Groupiest to curate content, we make sure you don’t forget to quote the original. The link is always there.
#2 Add your insight, provide some context, add some value
Curating content is a task. Which means, it demands work. A simple forward, copy/paste of aning article doesn’t change anything.
Quoting Steve Rosembaum, author of curation nation, in Quora:
“Curation isn’t just a handy way to duck the cost of content creation, it’s a role that the abundance of information on the web requires, even demands. Human curation picks up with automation and search ends- adding a human voice, a point of view, and editorial judgement to a collection”.
Copy/ paste isn’t curation. It’s plagiarism. Even Google punishes you when you do it. Always add value to what you’re sharing. Tell people why are you sharing it, at least. Something that goes beyond the “it’s interesting”. This is just a vague word and doesn’t help much. Gather more context. Tell how can we apply these rules. Or how did you find it. Your readers will thank you. Your page ranks will improve. And you’ll be better off.
To conclude: follow these two rules and you’ll be doing all right using curated content.