I’ve noticed a few posts recently using material run though Google Translate and posted verbatim with pictures included from the original article. These translations aren’t really that good and can lead to some funny results, such as:
If the soil is released, there is not enough cholesterol in the soil and there is no possibility of planting trees in the air.
Any original creative material is copyright of the author that made it even if it does not show an official copyright notice. You really should not use other people’s original work without permission. (If you have permission to use it you should state that to make it clear)
The FAQ from Steemit states that copyright infringement should be flagged by the community, quote:
What are Steemit’s policies on plagiarism?
If you are posting plagiarized or copied content, you can get in legal trouble for violating copyright laws. Plagiarized posts and spam are seen as abuse and will be downvoted by community members. If you are posting or using someone else’s content, you must ensure that you have the rights to use the content, and properly reference the sources where you got the material from.
Even if you are the original author of the material, if you worked for and were paid by the website, they hold the copyright on it. You would still need to ask permission from the person you sold the material to in order to use it, unless you negotiate having the copyright as an independent contractor as far as I know.
So you really can’t use anyone else’s original material without their permission unless it falls under ‘fair use’ laws or when quoting brief passages. Those are complex and beyond the scope of this post.
Even painting a picture based on a photographers photo that is used without permission can be considered a derivative work and a copyright infringement. There are a lot of issues to think about when creating graphics. The subject can become involved with what types of things are fine to make derivative works from and other licensing concerns.
If you have permission to use a photo, text or graphic you should really add a link to the source or state that the material is not your original work. Posting other peoples photography without stating that it is not your work can get you in trouble even if that photography is in the public domain or used by permission. Just siting the source of where a picture came from does not give you permission to use other peoples copyrighted work. (This is especially true about posting photos under the #photography tag which implies the photos are your original work.)
These things are something a professional that makes their living as a photographer, graphic artist or writer would know. As a social network many of these things can get overlooked, however, Steemit kind of blurs the lines in that you are getting paid for your work. If your account ever become worth a lot of money the last thing you want to happen is for many people to come after you with lawsuits.
Additionally, perhaps it is best not to copy facts and figures from websites about things that are not in your area of expertise unless you can reference the original study they came from or the facts are generally common knowledge. Lot of misinformation gets propagated that way, especially if the writing was translated incorrectly.
Recommendations on original materials for posts
Personally written stories and poems can be very interesting and fun to read. I think these types of materials can be understood better than factual articles when run through Google Translate.
Any kind of original photography can be interesting too, even if it is not made with the best camera or lighting. If it features things from local areas or places you have personally visited you can add some additional information about what things were like at the time you took the picture. This can make your blog more constant and interesting to the reader.
Creative work, drawings, paintings, computer generated graphics, or other materials that you have done yourself can be very original. There are many free programs that can be used to make interesting graphics and simple animations. Some kind of work in progress screen captures are nice to show of your process in creating things.
Your opinions on things or personal experiences are wonderful to share too. What makes you really interested about a topic? I think opinion articles are much easier to write than trying to write a good factual piece.
I like to do a lot of free flowing kind of journaling of my own thoughts and the things I’m doing.
What other kind of posts do you like reading or writing?
These are just a few of my ideas. It is tough to come up with original materials but it is much better for all of us if we do. Making original material benefits the person that creates it and the entire Steemit community, but stuff that is copied from other websites does not.