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Google AdSense Forum

Soliciting Articles for Content
To Increase AdSense Revenue

 12:51 am on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

I am tired of writing content and so want to try having visitors submit content and then paying them for it. My questions are if I pay for an article, I then own it, yes? Do I need to put the author's name on it? Who owns the copyright? And if I own it, I can place Adsense on it, yes? The articles would be on our site. Would an author want a cut of the advertising revenue?

And now that I have asked all this, is it worth it to solicit articles? Maybe more headache than it is worth....



 1:26 am on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

All depends on what you're paying for, you can buy full rights to the article or the rights to display it on your site.

You'll have to negotiate the terms with your writers.


 1:32 am on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Why not try elance (dot com) or the other sites out there where you can hire a writer? You can often get quality content for not a lot of dough.


 1:35 am on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Personally I wouldn't pay for articles. I do have a site where I request articles and I have published a few of them. But you soon notice that it is the same authors who will submit to you. More likely than not they will have published their article in many other places. Their articles will contain a link to their site wich will most likely have AS on it. What they want is relevant links to increase their ranks in the SE's. So what happens is you publish the article with the hopes that you get traffic ad clicks... and you will a bit... however, automatically, the authors copy will always beat you out in the SE's. So is it worth it? Well as little as it may be, its free money but not a recipe for riches unless you end up with thusands of these types of articles.

You may insist that if you pay them they only publish original articles and agree to not re-publish the article anywhere else... but what if they do anyway? I guess you could sue them but... is it worth the time and effort?


 1:53 am on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

I agree with Swebbie, although you should always run text through copyscape or do quoted searches of random strings of text at Google for each article before paying. (I learned my lesson the hard way once)

There are many people though, who work for the "for hire" sites who write excellent content for very low rates. If you find a good writer be sure to give them steady work to keep them in your camp for he long haul.

Plus, always make it a stipulation in the agreement that you own all rights to the material. That way you can change it or put your own name on it as the author. It's 100% yours.



 1:59 am on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

make it a stipulation in the agreement that you own all rights to the material. That way you can change it or put your own name on it as the author. It's 100% yours.

In some jurisdictions, authors retain "moral rights", under which claiming you wrote someone else's work would be illegal even if you hold the copyright to it.


 2:07 am on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Hi Danny,

Would this be true even if the original author agreed to it as part of the contractor agreement?

I'm not a lawyer, so correct me if I'm wrong but I think it would carry some weight.

I wouldn't want to give bad or potentially damaging advice so anyone thinking of the process I outlined above should check the laws in the juristiction both they, and the contracted writer are governed by.

Sorry for any confusion.



 5:24 am on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

I run a travel site so I was hoping for some varied, first-person articles, which I'm not sure I'd get if I hired a professional writer. But there seems to be too many pitfalls in soliciting articles from visitors.


 10:49 am on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Ember, it sounds like you're looking for articles which are more in-depth than your typical "user review" sites where readers contribute their opinions on staying at "Hotel Blah Blah".

Why don't you have a look around the web at other sites which invite article contributions, and have a look at their writers' guidelines?

You'll find many sites which offer no payment whatsoever, yet they seem to have no shortage of willing contributers who just want to see their name in print. You'll also get an idea of the kinds of rights these sites offer.

You probably won't find too many quality writers wanting to write for free, and may run the risk of turning your quality site into an outlet for the "Me, myself and I" brigade - ie, "Me and Joe went here, did this, then did that, then we did this ..."

If by "professional writer" you mean a travel writer, you should get some great varied 1st person experiences, but they don't come cheap ;) If on the other hand you mean hiring one of the "professional writer" guys who churns out articles all day at $5 a pop, you probably won't get what you're looking for as they won't have experienced what they're trying to write about.

Matt Probert

 11:54 am on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Plus, always make it a stipulation in the agreement that you own all rights to the material. That way you can change it or put your own name on it as the author. It's 100% yours.


While it is usual practice when writing for magazines etc that upon publication the author is paid, and the article becomes the copyright and property of the publisher, the author retains the right to be credited as the author. This means that while the author may not sell the same article to other publishers, the publisher still does need to give credit to the author of the work. I see no legal justification why electronic publishing should be any different?



 2:57 pm on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Interesting thread! I run a few young adsense sites and I write my own content. However, I want to try and host a few articles taken from article directories (keeping the author box intact, of course). Is anyone trying this? Is it owrth it? I know you loose some of the visitors to the author box links, but do you still end up with any profit?

Thanks for taking teh time to look at my questions!




 3:18 pm on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

allweb wrote:
>However, I want to try and host a few articles taken from article directories (keeping the author
>box intact, of course). Is anyone trying this? Is it owrth it?

Everyone has been talking so far about original articles. What you are suggesting here is using duplicate articles, which will be suicide for your site. Duplicate articles get your site penalised so your original articles may eventually suffer from penalties in the search engines. There's plenty of stuff in the Google Search forum on this topic, just search webmasterworld.com on words such as duplicate and penalisation (oops, sorry, penalization - the majority of the world spell it wrong).


 6:00 pm on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Yes, the last thing I want are duplicate articles. Even paying a professional writer from elance or guru brings that risk, although it is probably less than soliciting articles from visitors. Maybe the solution is to hire a part-time writer, say a college kid or stay-at-home mom, here in town. If they are an employee, their work product is mine.


 9:34 pm on Nov 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Why don't you let people apply for the job by writing an article? That way you will know if you like what he/she writes in advance.

I'd never put my own name under other people's writing even if the law permits this. Having other people write for your site looks professional in my opinion. Users will know there is a number of experts contributing to your site instead of just you.


 12:44 pm on Nov 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

THanks for your reply.

One question though... if duplicate content is penalized, why do article directories thrive? I mean, webmasters must use them to syndicate articles, right?

And another Adsense question, if I may: are the ads on higher PR sites priced higher, when compared to PR0 sites? Who gets the $10 per click ads that some keywords have?

Thanks and I wish you plenty of traffic :)


 12:57 pm on Nov 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

I run a service for providing content / articles on a regular basis. People who are interested can send me PM .

Articles with shared rights and full rights are wriiten as per requirement.


 2:11 pm on Nov 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

As always, WW is THE place to learn something new every day. Was not aware of the "moral" rights of ownership - great info. I write content for my own site and sell content to providers for distribution. If an article I'm selling contains information that would benefit my own site, I make sure it is completely different from the sold article (slant, tone, phrasing, etc.). That's only ethical and it's a shame to waste all that research on one article. I believe some content buyers state that articles can be used elsewhere (by the seller) if they are changed by at least 20% - IMO that's not enough to avoid dupe content.


 3:24 pm on Nov 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

If they are an employee, their work product is mine.

This is no different than the case of contracting with a total stranger to sell you exclusive rights to an article they wrote. In both cases, you legally have the exclusive right to the content. In both cases, it is possible to find that you are dealing with someone unscrupulous who will violate their legal responsibility at your expense.

Worry more about finding one or more people that you can afford and work well with than whether they are free-lance or an employee. If you can really afford the complications and tax implications of hiring an employee to write (assuming you're U.S.-based), you should be able to have your pick of good free-lancers who have a track record of honest dealing.

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