Saturday, January 26, 2013

Plagiarism: The Saga Continues!

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We have all been aware of some plagiarism recently. It seems to have spiked for some reason. I don’t know if it’s the new year, or the fact we all survived the apocalypse or what. But here I am, with my unfortunate story that I feel obliged to share.

I hate drama and wanted to settle the matter privately, but after the follow up that arose, and being warned that she was going around telling people I was falsely accusing and bullying her, I have no choice but to show my side of the story.

I was approached by a friend of mine who was on this blog reading a review of Alice in Zombieland. They found some similarities to my own review and approached me about it. After reading the review myself, I not only noticed the 1 example they had found, but 5 of them–and this was only by skimming. I did not bother reading any more as I had enough to prove it was taken off of mine and I emailed them a cease and desist letter. Reviews are a way to express myself, I don’t want my words on anyone else’s blog. Asking politely to remove it is not, in any way, bullying, or “making myself feel better” or any of the other things I have been accused of because I dared approach someone of stealing my words.

So here goes.

Below I’m only posting the examples I found. You can find my whole review here.

And her now deleted but cached review here (or a screenshot here and here in case the cache is removed or something). (Nothing is ever deleted from the internetz!)

Let’s begin, shall we?

(These are actually screenshots which is why they look offset)

So I go:

And she goes:

And then I go:

And she:

My turn again:

Aaand her:

Ok back to me:


And lastly… I say:

She says (or maybe it’s my alter ego? Huh):

Now, am I wrong here, to assume that she copied off me? Because in my email, yes I assumed. I didn’t ask if she mistakenly took a few words and put them in her review during a lack or clarity or something… So wanting to stay out of the drama that I avoid like spiders, I email her this to ask her to take her review down.

Her reply was:

**Edit to note that this person follows my goodreads (screenshot here).. yet she’s never heard of me?

Ok fine. I replied with a very short paragraph that simply said I did assume based on the basically word for word examples given. Then I planned to just let it go. It was gone from her blog. I was done with it. Moving on.

But THEN… of course it never ends does it? I start getting harassed.. BY HER MOTHER! On Twitter! If you know me, you know I rarely complain on Twitter. I just don’t like to be negative it’s boring. But did morning I actually did, I tweeted something that is completely unrelated to this about “idea theft” and I get this reply hours later from this person who I had absolutely no idea who she was, nor what she was referring to:

So ok I figure I’m not her biggest fan or whatnot. Not everyone has to like me. Fine. I didn’t reply and blocked her right away because I don’t need people tweeting me stuff like this to ruin a perfectly good day.

I get home a bit later and my friend tells me the girl who plagiarized me is talking to this Julisa person. So then I realize that she’s someone who thinks I was in the wrong by approaching Ali about my review.

So then my friend intervened:

And because of what follows I just want to note that my ONLY tweet to this woman, was this one in reply to Kara’s:

And then this happened:

I don’t know about anyone else’s opinion on this, but in my own, I’m not the bully, here.

Anyways, I will not be re-reading this so sorry for any typos or whatnot (I’m famous for them). I wanted to say my piece. I will not have my name slandered around Twitter for something that I was a victim of. PLUS, I have heard the girl went privately to some of my blog friends and accused me of falsely accusing her. That is not ok! So I have decided to put all the proof I have out there, and let the chips lie where they fall.

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Canadian blogger, wife, mother, coffee lover, and sarcastic at heart! She has had a love for all things bookish since before Amazon and eReaders existed *le gasp*. You can also find her organizing tours and other fun things at Xpresso Book Tours.

Latest posts by Giselle (see all)

109 Responses to “Plagiarism: The Saga Continues!”

  1. Amy

    All of this plagiarism is so ridiculous lately. So sorry that you have become a victim of it too. The way that it was handled from the other side was awful and uncalled for. Giving you big hugs babe!!

  2. Millie

    Oh, my gosh! This is completely horrific! I didn’t even bother reading through your examples, because clearly–after reading a few examples–it was obvious it was plagiarism. I’m so sorry this unfortunate thing happened to you! And clearly, you were not ‘accusing’ her or ‘bullying’ her into removing the review. And go blogger friends! Whose mom gets involved with this kind of thing now? That’s odd.
    While I’m sorry that you had to get involved in drama that you clearly did not want to be involved in, it was necessary. Honestly, why plagiarize something? It’s not worth it!
    I hope things settle down for your sake!

  3. Eileen

    Giselle I am so sorry you got attacked by the mother of this blogger! And that you were plagiarized in the first place! I mean, I totally get your reaction in the first place, just accept it and move on, since there’s no use holding on to it! But seriously, if you start getting attacked I will SO hold your earrings for you if you ever need me to! ;P

    And also, if I ever plagiarized and my mom found out, she would probably lock me in my room forever and make me shut down my blog and then have me flogged. NO JOKE. Because plagiarism is like legit illegal, as most people know and from all the school lessons we get.

    Anyway, I totally feel your pain and once again, I’m really sorry you had to go through all of this! Hopefully they’ll both just drop it and forget about it because it only becomes drama once it isn’t handled right. >.<

    After that Julisa handled it poorly, that’s when it became drama. Why can’t we just OWN UP to our mistakes?

  4. Jac (For Love and Books)

    This is just insane lately. INSANE.

    And I’m so sorry that you’re the victim of this. I’m even sorrier that she continues to bully you (because that is exactly what’s going on!)

    Sending you loads of hugs!

  5. Jenni @ Alluring Reads

    It really is too bad that this seems to be happening so much this year. And it’s only January *headdesk*

    What really irks me about this is how once you confront these plagiarizers they turn everything around and try to make it like they were the victim. Had she just owned up to what she had done and handled it maturely it would have all been swept under the rug and the majority of her public integrity would still be in tact.

    I hope more of these being made public will hinder other peoples willingness to try pull something like this in the future.

    I say a public flogging for all of them!

  6. Jessi (Geo)

    The plagiarizer’s reply really pisses me off! Like she’s trying to turn it back on you, make YOU look like the bad guy. Um, helloooo. It is OBVIOUS that these were your words. You’re the victim, not her. You can ‘come to the same conclusion’ with a word or two, scattered about, but you can’t ‘accidentally’ copy half of the context in multiple entire sentences. There’s NO possible way.
    By lying, and blaming you, she’s just making herself look bad.

    And her mother – oh my God, don’t even get me started. She should be ashamed of herself. She’s made herself AND her daughter look like asses for bashing you on a public site. Just because it’s her daughter doesn’t mean she’s a perfect little angel and can do no wrong. Obviously if someone says she plagiarized, she did – why would anyone lie about that when you can provide solid proof? That’s just ridiculous. And using the term ‘Mean Girls’…is she serious?
    Doesn’t she know that plagiarism is stealing, and therefore ILLEGAL? I am absolutely disgusted by this woman’s childish actions.

  7. Renae

    I…have nothing to say. I watched the Twitter drama unfold in all its ridiculousness. Giselle, you are a classy lady (always have been) and I think you handled it awesometastically.

  8. Annabelle Marie Veronica

    Oh Giselle, I am so sick and tired of all this plagiarism. After all these issues lately I really had hope people learned their lesson. And seriously, this girl’s mother has some nerve. I love the way you tried to handle it and I hate that the other side was so immature. Reading all those tweets was absolutely infuriating. Sending you much love doll and you know you always have my support.

  9. Ali Ginger-Read

    Wow, it always surprises me how caddy and crazy people can get when confronted with the truth. Crazy. Can I say that I hate she has my name? And, it’s even spelled right. I would say if there is a bully here, it’s the mother.

  10. Carmel @ Rabid Reads

    I’m sad to hear that plagiarism has struck again. What is the world coming to that peeps are stealing book reviews!? Good for you for sticking up for yourself and for calling her out on her actions.

  11. Nikki H

    *le sigh* the fact that it was blatant but she is still screaming about being falsely accused? I don’t get it smh So sorry this happened to you. And for her mother to intervene?! My God, show some class lady geez smh She is OBVIOUSLY the bully here. Don’t let it get you down! Read a book and calm down! Nice way to handle the drama!

  12. Sandy

    -sigh- I don’t understand people. I’m a young blogger myself (just hit six months, I believe) and I would never dream of doing this. Blogging is harder work than most people think, and to have that work stolen is just horrifying. A book review is your thoughts and feelings on a book you’ve just read. It doesn’t have to be perfect or exact. And, rewording someone else’s work in your own words, while trying to take credit for it, is still stealing. How can you possibly benefit from stealing from someone, apart from ruining your reputation and your blog? I’m sorry, Giselle. It sickens me that this happened to you and so many other people lately.

  13. Heather Jacobs

    Sigh. Some people just don’t know when to let things go and then go and attack others because they are so sure they are right. I’m sorry you had to go through something like this. Just crap. Kudos to you for being strong and level headed.

  14. Kelsey@TheLostBookReports

    I know, we can say similar things, but hers a way too close to not be plagarized. If she has done it now, I am sure she has done it before. I am curious to see. As for her mother getting involved,she is the one being childish.

  15. Monika

    I’m a brand-new book blogger (like, as of this month!) but I’m a professional musician and have some compositions published. You can imagine, plagiarism can run rampant in those circles as well. Let’s say, best case scenario, she’d read your review and the words had stuck in her mind. A friend of mine once played a melody for me that he thought he’d written; it was actually an obscure piece of music we’d performed briefly like, 6 months prior. He’d forgotten all about it, but when inspired to create, that beauty came back to him and he thought it was from him, kwim? When reading this I thought, maybe Giselle’s review totally struck her. I mean, you have a wonderful way of expressing your thoughts. 🙂

    BUT!!! An honest person, when confronted with the evidence you provided in your email, seeing that your review was posted WELL before hers, would have been horrified, sickened, apologized profusely, and immediately taken the post down! I mean, there’s a slim chance it *could* have been an honest mistake (but with that many copied phrases, unlikely). The fact that she got all defensive and played the victim, and all the stuff that followed… yeah. That’s not the reaction of someone who didn’t intend to do this. Everyone can see that. It’s all just disgusting. I’m so sorry this happened to you. 🙁

  16. Aman

    Why do people do that? If you open a blog, then the least you can do is write ORIGINAL stuff. I hate what the other blogger did to you. If she didn’t copy your review, then why did she changed it later. That proves that she knew what she did was wrong. Now she needs to own up to it, apologies, and move on. I’m hurt by the plagiarisms that have happened just this month, and I think you did the right thing by not getting in the drama, and staying out of it.

  17. sashabella

    I had the same thing happen to me. Luckily, or unluckily, it was one of my best friends so I was able to ask her to take it down but we did end up arguing. I don’t understand why people feel like stealing others thoughts or ideas, or why they feel the need to defend themselves after they’ve committed plagiarism. I understand defending your own work, but arguing and calling the other person names when you essentially stole their work, just blows my mind. I don’t understand…I’m sorry this happened to you.

  18. Tom

    You attempted to handle it professionally and with discretion, Giselle. Unfortunately, not everyone responds in kind. To you–and all the honest bloggers out there: your friends, fans, and followers are in your corner(s). Keep up the awesome work!

  19. manda-rae

    I’ve only had one encounter with plagiarism, and it ended well. Both parties heard both sides and came to an agreement.

    Giselle, you are an amazing book blogger with a lot of followers. These issues will eventually creep up, but I applaud you for holding your head high and not letting emotions take over. I have a lot of respect for that.

  20. Alexia561

    So sorry to hear that you were plagiarized! So many people are having their content stolen lately that it’s beyond sad. I try to stay away from reading reviews until mine is written just so I don’t subconsciously mimic anyone’s review. Hope the madness stops soon! I think you handled the entire incident well! Sending hugs!

  21. russell1200

    She did a pretty good job of shifting around the wording, but once you get beyond a casual glance the copying is obvious.

    My guess is that she is trying to build up her review count without actually having to read the books.

    Based on her mothers appearance, she can’t copy your good looks though!

  22. Barbara W.

    I’m sorry you’re dealing with this, Giselle. You’re 100% in the right and you handled it professionally. She went off the rails right away and there was no pulling back – I can’t believe her mother! If mine did that, I’d take her computer away and duct tape her fingers for a few days. This blogger is a grown woman going to school with a full-time job, so there’s no argument to be made that she’s “just a teenager” who’s just starting out and doing it as a hobby while in school.

    I’m glad you have friends who are vigilant and keep an eye out for you. This garbage hurts our community.

    • Barbara W.

      By the way, that was no slam against teenagers doing blogging as a hobby, just cutting off her potential excuse that she’s just starting out and it was a “mistake.”

  23. Aimee

    Well, one sentence could be dismissed. That many cannot. You did the right thing by protecting yourself and your interest. Your blog is well established and has a great reputation. Hers, however, is not. Hers is relatively new and her “Track record of 32 book reviews” doesn’t bode well for her.

    No worries Giselle, we all know you are not a bully and one to make false accusations.

  24. Christina

    This shit is fucking ridiculous. You posted your Alice in Zombieland review forever ago. Those reviews are too freaking similar. One sentence being the same does happen. Heather (The Flyleaf Review) and I have a sentence that matches almost word for word, but there was no plagiarism. The rest of the review is different. You have way more than that. Once is a coincidence. Five is…NOT.

    I just…I can’t. People need to realize that book blogs are, with all respect, NOT THAT SERIOUS. You can write your own. Ugh.

    Giselle, I am giving you a hug. *squeezes*

  25. Grace Fonseca

    It’s behavior like this that makes me sick to my stomach. People justify doing what they did. Wrong is wrong no matter how you slice it. Your reviews are much better than hers anyways. No parent wants to admit that their kid did wrong, but you clearly pointed out five examples of where the review is plagarized. You were the victim, not this girl and her blind mother. No one deserves this to happen to em ever.


  26. Ems

    Wow. It’s bad enough that your content was stolen, but then you get bullied all over Twitter by her mom?! Good grief. I haven’t been a frequent commenter until recently, but I’ve been reading your blog for a long, long time – your integrity & character have always impressed me. There is NO way you’d go around falsely accusing someone. The proof is in the pudding & the last I heard, the guilty have a hard time hearing the truth.


  27. Grace Lo

    I came across the conversation on twitter, and am just absolutely disgusted by how this could’ve happened after the recent blowup of plagiarism and the TSS incident nearly a year ago.

    Clearly, you’ve tried to keep this as private as possible, with hopes that the blogger would take down her review and acknowledge her mistakes. But for her to fight back against the blatant evidence that you put together is just unbelievable. She basically threw away her chance at not tarnishing her reputation. And for her mother to get involved takes it to a whole new level. I know for a fact that if I done anything similar to that, my mother probably would’ve locked me out in my pjs or something. One bit of what the mother said was true: nobody’s perfect. But as well, it doesn’t give your child a get-out-of-jail-for-free card when she’s done something that is obviously not right.

    Plagiarism hurts. It hurts the victim to have their content viewed as something that another could take so easily without regard. It hurts the offender’s reputation. But guess what else is true? Plagiarism is illegal. It is not a matter to be shrugged off. And it is never excusable.

  28. Kriston Johnson

    *head desk* It’s really to bad this happened and I’m sorry you had to deal with it. It makes me really sad. We all blog because we have a common interest and want to talk about our love for books. Then someone comes along and sucks all the fun out of it. When stuff like this happens it divides people.

  29. JessicaRaexox

    People can be SO rude and disrespectful! She CLEARLY copied your work, there’s NO way she didn’t know of you before that, obviously! Even a blind person would be able to see both her and her mother are in the wrong, not you. This makes me SO MAD >:\ Are these kind of people really so sad and pathetically unoriginal and brain dead that they can’t use their OWN WORDS to describe how they felt about a book they’ve read? Like come on. I can’t even.

  30. Kristilyn (Reading In Winter)

    So sorry this is happening, Giselle! I think the thing I hate the most is the fact that she’s talking about some “mean girls high school club.” Book blogging is a COMMUNITY, full of people who encourage one another to read good books and talk about good books. I’ve only met friendly people through my experience and hope it stays that way. It’s just really sad that people start blogs thinking that the only way they can be successful is to copy other bloggers’ material — I hope they realize that it’s not something we come up with in a second. It takes work to be a good blogger!

  31. Leanne Yang

    I’m so sorry to hear about this Giselle, it seems to be happening way too much the past year and now. I hope you can straighten all of this out, or maybe just leave it be. They are extremely rude for bashing you like that and making it seem like they’re being “bullied” I saw that in the e-mail you had asked very politely, so there really was no reason for her to suddenly twist your words around.

  32. Whitney

    It is blatantly obvious that you are the victim of plagiarism; it is just plain despicable and makes me sick that someone would stoop to that level. Isn’t the point of writing a book review is to express your thoughts on said book?

    Also, she (and her mother) need to look up the definition of bullying, because if anything her mom was the bully.

  33. Nereyda @Mostly YA Book Obsessed

    Aw, how cute, she got her mommy to defend her and pick on you. What is she, 10 years old? This is getting beyond ridiculous. I was plagiarized when I was still a newbie but the reviews let me to some weird foreign websites that freaked me out and I just ignored it.
    It’s sad how many people are staring blogs JUST so they can get free books. Then they have to copy from other people’s reviews because they just don’t have the passion most of us do to just share your love of books to others.
    I’m glad you said something and hopefully this goes away…

  34. Kathy Ann Coleman

    So sorry to hear about this. 🙁 *hugs*

    I’ll never understand WHY. What do people think they can get by telling me what someone else thought of a book? If I want to know what you (Giselle) thought, I’m going to come here. Not to some-other-blogger’s blog. *shakes head* How on earth does someone so unoriginal that they need to take someone else’s thoughts actually come up with the IDEA of starting a blog?! *tries to calm down*

    Further… WHY take someone else’s words and twist them around to create “your” review? I dunno if this is just me, but that seems like it would take longer then writing a few paragraphs about what the book did that I liked or didn’t / how it made me feel.

    And if the person isn’t reading the books, therefore doesn’t HAVE an opinion and (for some reason… I really don’t get this…) is doing this to get “free books”… <– That makes no sense! (The mentality, not the concept. People like to hoard things so it sure wouldn't surprise me.)

    This situation makes me really angry, because: (1) It keeps repeating. Learn, people! This just isn’t worth it! (2) It is disrupting an absolutely beautiful community that I’ve grown to love, and when it happens to my friends it ticks me off! and (3) As a writer, as well as a blogger, I can only imagine how FURIOUS I would feel if someone did something with my characters, and I’m sure you feel equally passionate about your blog. (I wouldn’t be happy if someone swiped from my blog either, but from my book would just not end well. O.O)

    I commend you for handling this situation with courage and class. What we write comes from within us: she can try to steal the words from you, but she can never be you. Those words are like someone else’s clothing, a size too large or small, they will never really fit. Despite all that has happened, you still have your dignity and your integrity, and those are things no one can touch.

    Take care!

  35. Maja

    This is just wrong. Is it that hard to postpone a review if you don’t have the time to read the book, don’t know what to say or for whatever reason? It happens even to the best of people who actually study a certain language and when it comes to writing they just draw a blank sometimes. Then fine, postpone it, don’t copy someone elses effort. Cripes, people are really starting to bug me. I am sorry Giselle you had to feel it on your own skin.

  36. Lil Berry

    I’m sad to hear this happened to you and to read about the way you where treated. I insist, we blog because we like it, because we want to, because we like to share our love for something and it feels like plagiarizing someones work takes all the fun out of it, we are not here for the fame or the followers (although we do love them very much) we are here to let the world know OUR opinions and points of view.
    It is a shame the mother decided to get her hands dirty, maybe all she wanted was to protect her daughter but bullying others is not the way to do it. Bullying is never the answer, to anything, EVER!!!
    Sad to hear you had to go through all that drama but glad you can take that weight off your shoulders.
    Good luck with everything and lets hope this drama is over

  37. Nicole Mainardi

    Ugh this is getting ridiculous!!! Bloggers need to stop stealing other bloggers stuff! And even if you get caught, know you’re caught, take down the post and be done with it. This girl must be young for her mom to get involved, so she’s probably not as experienced a blogger as you and copied your review for that reason. But seriously, this is getting ridiculous. I’m just waiting for the day it happens to me. So sorry this happened to you Giselle. You don’t deserve the slander that mother dished out 🙁

  38. Faye Mat.

    So sorry to read this once more :/ It really sucks that until now, they haven’t learned their lesson yet. At least that’s one least plagiarist in the world. Hang in there!

  39. Ashley

    Jesus.. the plagiarism was bad enough, but her MOM getting involved?? Those replies to you?? Honestly, those were so far out of line. I know how hard it can be to take slander and insults. I’ve been in that situation before, and even though I did nothing wrong, I couldn’t help but wonder if I did, just because I was getting that reaction out of people. So just know that you did NOTHING wrong. This girl clearly went into violent defence mode and is lashing out to protect herself as she denies everything.

    I’m so glad my mother would never act like that. I would be so embarrassed.

  40. Ari (Reading After Midnight)

    I found as well parts of my reviews or entire articles (word by word!) posted on some websites over the internet.
    I am getting a bit tired of asking people to remove them. And I am not even such a good reviewer, LOL.

    It is good to have some good book friends that can tell us about them, but I just wish people would just find their words to express their own feelings and leave our reviews alone. How hard could it be for them to say what they liked or didn’t like about a book without copy-pasting form another review?
    Urrrhhh.. I am getting annoyed again. I should stop.

    Sorry you got through this too 🙁

  41. Sirtsu

    Good for you, Giselle, for standing up to yourself. Mental bullying is as much as bullying as physical and some ways even worse, because where your body can heal and forget the damage in some ways, one’s mind usually doesn’t and this kind of thing shows your maturity more than anything else. I like that you just went all Jacqueline from Easy by Tammara Webber and stood up for youself and other people alike in that same situation. Since you are a pretty famous blogger and people look up to you, I hope all plagiarizers learn from this and remove their plagiarized work from their blog to avoid this kind of a situation and bloggers who unfortunatly will by any chance find themselves in a similar situation will know how to handle themselves professionally and nicely like you did. I don’t want to start make a sorrow speach, because I know you’ll become out of it stronger and better, so I’ll just say that I’m proud of you, girl!

    Siiri @ Little Pieces of Imagination

  42. Mary @ BookSwarm

    Holy cow. Just…holy cow.

    You know, if these people would just read the book and express their own thoughts, it’d be all good. Why copy? Original thoughts are always more interesting!

    Sorry, girl. *hugs*

  43. Kara_Malinczak

    So, Giselle, you already know my thoughts because I Was very involved in this last night. This girl’s mother has some issues, to say the least. I truly hope this ends it, but she made her blog private now so I would make sure she is not following you, and to everyone else, I would block her on Goodreads and do frequent Google searches on your reviews. If she keeps this blog private and continues to post, its only a matter of time before this happens to another blogger.

    I am so fucking sorry it ended this way. And sorry that this happened to one of my very bast friends. I’m still pissed the day after. UGH.

  44. Micheline D

    Again Giselle, I am, so sorry that all of this happened the way it did and that you had to deal with 1.being plagiarized and 2. being harassed for being plagiarized by the mother of the guilty party. The whole thing is beyond ridiculous to me. Your screen shots obviously conform the whole thing point blank. Having the mother jump in to give you a hard time was just beyond disgusting. I am glad you found out though at least and were able to take action but it sucks the big one that it had to come to this…

    What the hell is going on with the plagiarism lately anyways?! I can’t believe kids aren’t taught about it at school…we certainly were! And anyways, how simple do you have to be to thin you won’t get caught? This is the internet people!!

    *BIG HUGS* to you Giselle, you’ve done NOTHING wrong! Keep your head up & hang in there ♥

  45. Jenea Whittington

    I haven’t been blogging for as long as many of you. But when I first started this, it was because I enjoyed reading being part of my life, and wanted to tell others about the amazing books that I have read. It was blogs like yours that I found inspiring, and made me decide to do this. I love blogging, and it it times like this, it just gets a little discouraging that people act like this. I know most of us are adults, and even the the younger bloggers don’t act this. From where I sit, you did the RIGHT thing and I think it was handled with decency and respect.

    Jenea @ Books Live Forever

  46. Anonymous

    She’s now made her blog subscriber only. Guess she didn’t like the comments she was getting.

    Hard to accept that you’re wrong when mommy is telling you you so speshul.

  47. Melissas Eclectic Bookshelf

    Good grief! *Sigh* I don’t think any of us will ever understand the mentality of someone who thinks it is ok to steal. And today’s youth will never learn that such things are wrong when the parents defend regardless. You hear about the same thing in the schools all the time…teacher have no ability to teach or discipline because the parents always take the children’s side…even when it is clear that they are in the wrong.

    I completely understand not having time to write reviews…but is the answer stealing someone else’s work? Of course not…just don’t post any reviews {I’ve been working 11 hour days for three weeks straight…I just didn’t post any reviews last week!)

    *hugs* Sorry that you had to deal with this:( It’s days like this that I am glad my blog isn’t well known enough and my reviews not good enough to be a target…

  48. Laura @Bookish Treasures

    I think if there is just one bit of a review that sounds similar it can just be coincidence, but by the time you are at 5 that is just far too unlikely. She also follows you on goodreads so has most likely seen the review. She is definately the one in the wrong not you. Sorry you had to go through this.

  49. ohdamnbooks

    I can’t believe she treated you like this when she was the one obviously in the wrong. I don’t get why she plagiarized you the first place – doesn’t it take a lot longer to rephrase the words you steal than if she was writing her own review with her own ideas? Why start a book blog the first place if all you’re going to do is plagiarize? When will people get that plagiarizing is just NOT okay?

  50. Sana

    Okay, this plagiarism thing just keeps piling on. Why is it so hard to believe that copying is plagiarism even if it’s just a sentence. And then the plagiarist has the nerve to act like they’re on the receiving end. It’s unbelievable.

    I’m glad you decided to do a post on it. Best of luck, Giselle. It’s never fair that while bloggers put in all this work into their blogs, others come in to try to steal it away. What a loser.

  51. Mel@Thedailyprophecy

    Oh no, not again 🙁 I’m getting so sick and tired of all these plagiarism stories! I’m sorry to hear you were a victim of it, Giselle. And those tweets from the mother, what the hell.. What’s up with all these people lately? It’s like they have started a plagiarism-club.

  52. Book Wookie

    Wow! You’re right. Those are too close to be coincidence. One or two might not prove anything, but 5 or 6? Something smells fishy.

    It’s too bad people can’t form their own independent thoughts and opinions. The time and effort spend re-wording someone else’s work could have been better spent writing an original review. Oh wait, you’d probably have to read the book first in order to do that.

  53. fredamans

    I’m the first one to say enough is enough when it comes to lynching a blogger, however, without reading every single word here, and only reading the tweets, you can CLEARLY see who the bullies are. Her, her mother and her useless friend should get a grip on reality.
    Anyone who knows your blog, which they lie about knowing, knows you are truthful and will not buy into their crap. You did the right thing, now move on. Other than a battle of wits, which they have you beat with stupidity, you will get nowhere with them.

  54. Savannah Bookswithbite

    WOW! That is just crazy! And her mother! On no she didn’t! UGH! This is just all so sad.

    I don’t think in any way were you a bully. You were professional in what you said. For them to go out and say those things is just crazy!

  55. Lily B

    I’m a newish blogger and I am confused by why anyone would want to copy someones review.. that just baffles me. I don’t care that someone finds the same points interesting, yes it does happen. What does not happen is when every word for word is the same as another reviewers. I mean she basically paraphrased you…
    Her mother stepping in… hilarious.

    I am sorry this happened to you Giselle, it’s very sad and unfortunate and I hope you don’t get discouraged. This should not happen in a book blogging world.

  56. Ivana

    What baffles me is how feisty those plagiarizers get when they’re caught. You did something wrong, fix it, apologize, and I’m sure the other party wouldn’t make a drama out of it. But nope, you need more negative publicity?

    Sorry it happened to you, Giselle. *hugs*

  57. Jenny

    This is very obviously plagiarism. And of course her blog is private now.

    What is up with the infestation of plagiarists lately? And the victim blaming?

    It sucks that you had to deal with this crap. It makes me sad and also angry to see stuff like this happening. I mean, people can’t form their own opinions?? What gives?

  58. Sarah Elizabeth

    There seems to be a lot of this going around at the moment. Maybe if people spent more time reading the books instead of coping other people’s reviews, they might be able to form their own opinions instead of stealing other peoples.

  59. Jackie

    The plagiarism was bad enough, but then having mom jump on board to defend her and throw around that word “bully” like its an insult to you just made it worse. It’s really just an insult to those who are truly bullied. They’re just crying wolf, and that’s not cool.

  60. Nazish Reads

    There is lots of plagiarism going on lately, this is the third case I heard about this year, and it’s not even February yet, wow, some people really need to start using their own brains for once, it’s not that hard (although I always have trouble deciding how to say what I want to say on my reviews, but I still write my own reviews).

    So sorry that you had to deal with this crap. I love it when the victim of the plagiarism deals with these situations so maturely.

    Having her mom defend her on twitter, that’s really embarrassing, what is this? Elementary school?
    I know that I don’t actually know you that well, but the fact that she accused you of bullying when you asked her politely is ridiculous, also, you’re one of the nicest and most talented bloggers I know.

    -Nazish @ Nazish Reads

  61. Jessirae

    What this girl did was totally uncalled for. You approached her in a professional and polite manner and what does she do? Deny the accusations when the evidence says otherwise and then she allows her mother to go on a rampage. First of all, this is sooooo not high school. She didn’t need her mom to get involved when all of this could have been settled quietly the first go. She just made it worse and she’s the one who gave way for people to respond to her in the manner she didn’t want to be responded. In no way did you bully her Giselle and it totally sucks that she’s doing this when clearly you are the victim of the plagiarism she refuses to fess up to. I’m sorry this happened to you :((( You don’t deserve it one bit.

    Keep your head up, girl! I love your blog and everything you do on it. Don’t let this girl bring you down!! <333 Huge hugs from meeeee 🙂

    Jessirae xx

  62. melissa

    I mean its true maybe you and I can read a book and have the same thoughts and reactions to it but its very similar paraphrasing and to much of coincidence since she’s a follower of you… Sorry about all that drama

  63. Book Flame

    I’m so sorry you had to go through this, I don’t get what is up with all this plagiarism lately. Anyone who isn’t blind can see how obvious it is, heck I didn’t even have to read all five examples the first one was enough and then having mommy fight her battles ummm WTF! anyways I love your blog and keep doing what your doing because your just that awesome!

  64. Jesse Burgoyne

    I have to admit, I hate reading about all of these plagiarism situations that have been going on. It upsets me to read about, because I always want to think the best of people. After reading your examples and seeing how similar both of your words are, it’s clear that she has read your review before. I do believe in coincidences, but really, what are the odds of that many similarities in the same review? I can understand why those examples would be enough for you to ask her to cease and desist. I don’t know this girl’s personal situation, her age or whatever, but her mother attacking you on twitter is not okay, even if it was a false accusation. You had a legitimate claim, anyone, even they, should be able to see that with the examples. If its all a mistake, why couldn’t the mother let it go gracefully? Isn’t it better to keep your daughter’s name out of it and let it go then turn it into a mudslinging campaign? Regardless of whether she plagiarized the review or not, now everyone on the Internet is reading that she may have plagiarized it. I don’t know. I just think that if it were me and I was accused, even falsely accused, I’d want to handle the situation as tactfully as possible, even more so if it were my daughter who was the one accused.

    Jesse @ Pretty In Fiction

  65. Gina @ My Precious

    I’m so sorry you have to go through this. You are definitely not a bully. I love your blog, your writing is so impressive. You have a special way with words. I guess that’s why this young girl wanted to “borrow” them. Its really sad these days though that when people do make a mistake they just don’t own up to it. Instead, they try to justify it. Such a terrible thing! Again, sorry you had to deal with all of this, you are a great blogger and don’t deserve this kind of treatment.

  66. Abby Flores

    It’s ridiculous.. I guess one similar sentence may not be plagiarism.. but the whole lot of it.. it is plagiarism..I’m sorry for this Giselle, but you didn’t do anything wrong.. As a book reviewer myself, it will hurt me to see a copy of my review being credited to someone else. You’re not the bully, you’re just a victim here.. But whatever happens, I hope you continue blogging.. Expresso Reads is a great blog..:D

  67. Jaz

    Woah ok even I have to admit there are way too many similarities! This really sucks, so sorry you had to go through that 🙁

  68. kelseysclutteredbookshelf

    This is just getting crazy, so many good bloggers are getting plagiarized and there’s really no need for it, it doesn’t take too much effort to write your own words.
    I’m so sorry you had to be one of the people that it happened to, I hope it doesn’t happen again.

  69. Jennifer Hartling

    🙁 That truly sucks. What in the world is going on lately?! This is the 2nd post I’ve read in 2 days about this very issue. Good grief!

    I’m sorry this happened to you.

  70. Giselle

    Thanks so much everyone for all your lovely comments and support! It means a lot! I’ve heard nothing from either of them since so hopefully it will stay that way. xoxo

  71. Lizzy


    Clearly, she was framed. You were jealous of how awesome this girl’s reviews were and so after reading her review of Alice in Zombieland, you edit the review you wrote 4 months ago to include almost word per word phrases from the awesome review that she originally wrote. You are the one who is guilty of plagerism. Not only that, but being a blogger veteran, you and your book-loving posse ganged up on her via twitter. And now her whole blogging career is over before it begins. Her only remaining fan of her blog is her mother. Everyone else hates her and it’s all because of these lies you’re spreading around.


    Okay, so that was the best scenario I could come up with as to how YOU are the bully and SHE is the victim. And no, I don’t believe that my proposed scenario is in any way true.

    <3 reading your blog, Giselle, and sorry that this happened to you.)

  72. Alexa Y.

    I’m really sorry this happened to you. You write some of my favorite reviews, and I trust and enjoy reading your content! As always, I will consistently continue to support you and your blog. xo

  73. Tima Maria

    That’s incredible! So sorry for you, Giselle. I amazes me how these people can so blatantly twist things around to make themselves appear innocent! But, that’s the way criminal minds work.
    Keep up the good work and let it go – they’re not worth it. I believe their dirty work will come back to bite them.

  74. Amber at The Musings of ALMYBNENR

    Giselle, you handled yourself beautifully. You did everything right. You even wanted to stay away from drama by handling this gross situation discreetly. But I am glad you posted about this because when this girl took things further and got her mother involved, it was poised to spiral out of control. It’s despicable the way she and her mother acted and what really aggravates me are their shouts of truth and faith when they obviously have no sense of either and belittle those words for those who truly embody them. I hope this stuff stops. I’m appalled that TSS is still around and maybe that’s part of the problem: she caused drama and then she was back to her blog and authors and pubs continued to deal with her so people like this girl think it’s ok. It’s not.

  75. Becca Lostinbooks

    Not only is this chick saying bite her for stealing your words, she is basically saying she doesn’t give a crap about her own blog and she doesn’t read other reviews? What a waste. She doesn’t even need to be doing this if she doesn’t care. If that is even the case. I don’t know this other person and I have never been to her blog, but I don’t think you came off as aggressive or beligerant at all. She is being really sensitive.

    I have noticed before my words sounding similar to other people’s reviews. However, never have the exact same lines been used. It’s like she copy and pasted and then used a thesaurus to make it sound different. Maybe she cares so little about her blog she can’t even be bothered to write a review herself.

    I honestly do not understand why this keeps happening in our community. We should be excited for each other’s successes. We should teach those who want to learn more, and learn from those who have something to teach. This shouldn’t be a competition. This shouldn’t be a drama-filled community. It’s about books for gods sakes! It seems these people who keep creating these issues are actually trolls and are getting off on the drama they create.

  76. Emily Drema

    Wow, this is really something. I really think the girl should be more mature and as to admit her mistake. Maybe it’s her self-righteousness, which everyone has, but the line has to be drawn. She should know when she’s wrong, and maybe just apologize. I think it’s rude that she would accuse you instead.
    Annabelle from Sparkles and Lightning had someone plagarize her work too.
    It’s really sad to see all those who plagarize work out there. I honestly hope this will stop.

  77. Henry Circle

    I don’t honestly understand why anyone would copy a book review. Even the most successful book review blogs get little public notice, make a few bucks a month at most and in fact, bloggers, spend more money on giveaways, blog design, etc. than we ever make! If you don’t do it because you enjoy reading and contributing your opinion to the lit world, then why blog? I swear, I just don’t get it. But I see why you’d be peeved.

  78. Carolyn

    I think some people fail to understand that every if you change part of it – mixing it up a little- it’s still plagarism! I’m sorry to hear that this happened to you – though in weird twisted way – maybe take it as a compliment to your superb review writing skills? Tiny, tiny silver lining? After all, I love your reviews and those other people – I’d never heard of.

    Honestly though – why run a book review blog if they don’t even write their own reviews? Are they really under that much pressure that they feel it necessary to copy someone else’s work? I just don’t understand why this occurs. The way to write better reviews is to practice! Not by copying someone else’s work.

    I really hope this doesn’t happen to you again. And I hope it doesn’t discourage you from keeping reviewing, blogging and doing what you love. You’re really great at it, after all.