BPM splog

If you surf around looking for BPM blogs, you may have noticed something strange: my blog posts from here on Column 2 reproduced in their entirety and without permission on the blog of Mark Bean, the VP of Sales for an ECM/BPM-related vendor, Altien. I’m not linking to them or to the fake blog itself, called “Office 2.0 and ECM News”, since I am definitely not encouraging traffic.

This is a clear violation of my intellectual property and copyright, and I’m amazed that anyone who works in this industry would propagate such an openly fraudulent and illegal activity. Maybe that tells you something about how Altien does business in general.

I noticed this a few weeks back, but I only noticed that he started stealing the full posts (as opposed to significant chunks of them) with my Gartner coverage this week. I sent Bean a request this morning to stop stealing my blog posts, and he replied “Sure thing”, like I had asked him for the weather — no apology, no admission that he might have violated blogging etiquette, much less copyright law. I’ve asked him to remove all of my full posts from his site, although obviously there’s no law against him linking to any of my posts and publishing a short excerpt under fair use rules.

Imitation may be the sincerest form of flattery, but in this case, it’s also theft.

Update: According to Altien’s CEO, who left a comment on this post, Mark Bean is no longer in their employ. In my communications with Altien, it was clear that Bean’s activities do not reflect their general business practices.

7 thoughts on “BPM splog

  1. Sorry Sandy – put it down to an error in judgment on my part and a configuration issue since I installed my latest WordPress Theme.

    I have removed all evidence of any links to your blog.

    I run the blog in my personal time mainly to keep myself informed on the ECM market and other “2.0” related issues I can read on the road from my mobile device.

    That is all.

  2. Sandy – I went to the site and he/it has pilfered postings from many popular sites, but the odd thing is that most have attributions at the end. That doesn’t make it right, as you aptly state.

    I’ve dealt with pilfering of my material in other settings – believe it or not, university-based. Nothing like a cease-and-desist from my lawyer to get things wrapped up quickly in my favor. Perhaps this clown AND his outfit need one from yours. Just a suggestion…:)

    Bob

  3. Bob, the posts of mine that were on there did link back to my site, but since the entire post was on there, there would be no reason for me to link through. This clearly violates fair use, and therefore copyright law.

    I’ve had a couple of emails from Bean and the MD at Altien, asking to have the company name removed from my posting since “it has nothing to do with the company.” I think that if an executive at a company does something that not only violates copyright law but does so from sources within that company’s industry, then the judgment of the company for hiring a person like that in a senior role has to be called into question. Someone at the VP level is presumably making some level of policy decisions within their organization, and his behaviour towards the rest of the industry — even if it is during his own time — reflects on his organization.

    As of today, his site has been redirected to a completely scrubbed version of his shared Google reader feeds, and does not contain any of the BPM or related industry post-stealing that was on there previously. Obviously, the message got through.

  4. Mark’s site was not affiliated to Altien, and was created by him in his spare time. I fully understand your reaction to seeing your content reproduced without permission. I am very disappointed that this has occurred, and assure you that it is not a fair reflection of the ethical standards of our business.

    We have accepted Mark’s resignation.

    Jason Hirst
    CEO, Altien

  5. Jason, I appreciate your public comment on this, and I’ve updated the post to reflect it.

    As I communicated to you in email, anyone with an executive title who does something in his company’s industry will be seen to be acting on behalf of his company, even if he’s not. In fact, I would be surprised if his employment agreement didn’t state that anything that he did related to the industry became the property of (and therefore the responsibility of) the company, regardless of whether he did it on his own time.

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