Wednesday, October 08, 2014

So Linda's Blog is Down...


So Linda's blog has been 'removed' by Google, temporarily I hope. If you try to visit lindaikeji.blogspot.com, you get the "Blog not found" error (screenshot above).

I'm not quite sure what to think or how to feel. On the one hand, I somewhat understand the hurt writers and other artists feel when they are not adequately credited for their work, or in some cases when their work is reproduced without their express permission. After all, I went to great lengths in 2013 to call out a Facebook 'friend' who edited the first paragraph of one of my articles and passed it off as his own. And I spent weeks chasing Seth up and down before doing a 7-day series based on one of his books. In most cases, I, like other writers, am content for now (2014) to be credited - and I'm grateful for the free publicity it brings.

On the other hand, I love Linda Ikeji, inexplicably. Since meeting 'virtually' in 2010, I have grown attached to her persona - and my idea of a break when I'm in the "zone" is to pop into LIB for a dose of the day's gossip. And I suddenly realize - we are all guilty - including me. Name the average Nigerian blogger who hasn't re-used an Image without permission, and I'll show you her/his blog is of the text-only variety.

Was it right to use so many photos, videos, and articles without express permission from the owners? Frankly - the answer is no, except the original creator had granted blanket permission. The Internet is governed by Terms & Conditions, some of which allow Google to yank you off if you break the rules. And outside of the Internet, it's just plain wrong to make a living off other people's work without acknowledging them. It's a pity most graduates of Nigerian Tertiary Institutions have been guilty of plagiarism at one time or the other.

You already know what I think about the post where she showed off her cars. One of my Dad's favorite sayings has to be "ti isu e ni ba ta, ki a fi owo bo je, ki a si se aye jeje" i.e. "If your yam is 'big' - not so sure about this, correct me if I'm wrong - you cover it with both hands while eating it" - presumably not to call attention to yourself. Hindsight is typically 20/20, but I daresay there was a connection between this and that. Surely, it must have hurt the original content creators even more to see her succeeding so much on the back of "their content".

I strongly think Linda will bounce back, and much better. Linda is smart, and under all the bravado - I'm sure she'll learn from this experience and do things better the next time. After all, hundreds of people will pay her to post their content, and she can quickly implement systems to settle aggrieved authors and ensure she is adequately protected for all future posts.

Having said all that, here's rooting for Linda Ikeji, the Queen of the Nigerian Internet, and hoping she weathers this storm.

I'm a fan, Linda, and I'll visit your blog wherever you choose to host it in future and however long the url is. Just like a million other LIB Voltrons.

PS: Go here to read a really nice piece by Ayo Sogunro on this same matter.

:)
Koye.

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