Someone Stole Your Story. Now What?

It's a sad truth that plagiarism does occur on the Internet. Sometimes the person copies your story word for word and says they found it on the Internet. Sometimes the person copies it and claims it as theirs. Sometimes they change names or tiny things like eye or hair color, while still keeping the words in place. Sometimes they steal your idea or a unique creation.

Plagiarism is NOT, however, a similar story or a story with the same title but a different plot.

Once you have had your story stolen, depending on what site it occurred on, you have different options available to you.

On Mibba, you would get a link to both works and message an administrator to let them know what happened. The administrator would look at the dates and compare the stories for plagiarism. They would then remove the plagiarized work and the user would be permanently banned from Mibba, as per the Site Rules. This is also how you would handle plagiarism on one of our sister fandom sites.

On Tumblr, you will have to fill out a DMCA request. This is a long form where you state your name, personal information (address, phone, email), certify that you are the copyright holder or acting on their behalf, and then you link them to both the original work and the plagiarized work. This can be tricky if you have your work only hosted on Mibba as non-users can't read certain pieces, we know. However, this has not been an issue for me. Sometimes they request screencaps after the fact. LiveJournal works similarly to this.

On WattPad, they have a report abuse link next to stories and you can select plagiarism from a dropdown menu and supply your links and email. I have had good success with Wattpad as well. DeviantArt works in a very similar manner to this.

If you are plagiarized on, your best bet is to contact the author and plead with them. This site has not responded to any of my DMCA complaint requests or reports on stories. As far as I know, they are all still up even though they violate the site's own rules about real-person fanfiction.

My story plagiarism case was unique, so I felt comfortable messaging authors to remove the story in a lot of cases. My story was being widely plagiarized and everyone knew it, so no one got defensive and claimed it was THEIR original work.

I do not recommend contact the user directly as this may start a war against you. The internet can be a mean place. I highly recommend going through the anonymous channels to get them removed. Except, of course, in the unfortunate case of

If you have experiences with other websites and their processes regarding plagiarism, please feel free to share in the comments.

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