Why eBaum's World Sucks
Copyright infringement sucks
eBaum’s World makes money by stealing copyrighted work from other sources without credit and profiting from the advertising on their site. In other words, they make money off of other people’s hard work. How would you like it if I stole your stuff and made a bunch of money off it?
eBaum’s also seems to want to pass off this stolen content as its own. Credits and copyright notices are consistently stripped off, to be replaced only by an eBaum’s World watermark. There is no excuse for this behavior. It’s both unethical and illegal.
I do understand it’s in the spirit of the internet to take something cool and put it up on your site. However, it’s not in the spirit of the internet to do it without permission and without crediting the author. If you think stealing things is what the internet is all about, I suggest you reassess your idea of what the internet is all about. The fact is, many people really don’t mind if you put something of theirs up on your site as long as you credit them, even if you don’t ask. In most cases, you should still ask unless they explicitly state you don’t have to, since using something without permission is still technically illegal (even if they don’t mind), and you don’t want to be unpleasantly surprised when somebody shows up who does mind if you use their image. Regardless, if you don’t credit them, they get unhappy. And if you make money off it without crediting them, they get really unhappy. Be courteous, give basic respect. It’s that simple.
By the way, I can understand just taking a cool image and putting it up in your blog without permission or credit. I’ve done that, because the amount of traffic my LiveJournal gets is very small (currently). I’m not talking about that sort of thing; people expect that on blogs. If it’s something more than a blog, though, even just a humble personal homepage, you really should ask permission and give credit. And Eric Bauman certainly knows better.
In January 2006, users of YTMND, a humor site, attempted to DDoS eBaum’s World after it was discovered that eBaum’s had stolen content from YTMND. YTMND itself had nothing to do with the attack, and its administrator, Max Goldberg, condemned the attack, but was powerless to stop it. Neil Bauman contacted Max, blaming him for the attacks in an extremely unprofessional cease and desist letter. You can read the rather hilarious e-mail exchange [link may break in the future]. I expect I won’t have to explain what’s wrong with Neil’s attitude. Who the hell does he think he is? Does he think that, because he runs a successful site, other people should kiss his butt?
Just to be clear, I don’t approve of what the YTMNDers did, even though I don’t feel sorry for eBaum’s. In fact, a whole bunch of YTMNDers are jerks and I don’t want to associate myself too closely with those types. Some YTMNDers are cool, and I’m not ashamed to participate in YTMND, but it does have its unsavory aspects.
For similar sites that don’t rip people off, check out Newgrounds and Albino Blacksheep. Virtually anything you can get from eBaum’s, you can get from elsewhere…after all, they had to steal it from somewhere.