If you’ve followed me for any amount of time, you will know I get pretty uptight about people stealing my stuff. When I point it out I will often get some comeback from people asking why I make such a fuss about it. Here’s why.
Let me start by saying I am not delusional about what I do. I don’t think any one article in isolation is so special compared to all the other stuff out there. There are a lot of people that do what I do. It’s hard to be objective about yourself, but I think I have a few things going for me.
- I’m pretty good at deciding what not to include in an article. Despite what a lot of people say, the Oracle documentation is good. The problem is there is much more detail than most people need for their day-to-day job. I think what I do pretty well is remove a lot of the extra stuff and make it seem less daunting, whilst giving links to the docs for those that want to dig deeper.
- I try to include small simple copy/paste examples to demonstrate what I am saying. This is completely down to the influence of people like Tom Kyte. I did not invent this style.
- I keep revising articles to try to improve them. It is rare something on the website goes live and is never touched again.
- Other people have come and gone. I’ve consistently invested in my skill set (23+ years) and my website (18+ years).
Every article is what I (Tim Hall) think is important about the feature. Every blog post is my (Tim Hall’s) perspective on the issue. There is a bit of me, for better or for worse, in everything that goes out there. Over the years there have been plenty of people who have offered to write for me. I could easily have, and probably should have, turned this into a site that required almost none of my time, had a bigger scope and probably made a lot of money. Instead it is just me and what I’ve created.
I guess the best analogy would be the difference between someone stealing a car you’ve bought, compared with someone stealing a car you’ve spent years restoring. Both are bad, but the second one is gonna feel a lot worse as it feels personal.
With all that in mind, when someone takes something I’ve spent my time to produce and in a few seconds publishes it on their website I get pretty angry. Despite what you might think, I don’t mention every incident. Most get dealt with in private, but occasionally I go supernova and take to twitter. 🙂
So that’s it. That’s why you sometimes see me go ballistic over someone nicking some crappy article. 🙂