Content Curation vs Copying: What’s the Difference?

miner_with_pick_axe_400_clr_4651Last week I wrote about a tool to help you check for copycat content. You can read the article here.

That led to a question: Where does content curation fit in?

Without a doubt, information is plentiful on the Internet. Many would say T-M-I and separating real gold from fool’s gold isn’t always easy.

With content curation, you can add value for your readers and build up your expert credibility by finding the gold for them!

Here’s an excellent primer from Beth Kanter:

As I wrote last week, there’s nothing wrong with doing online research, reading widely and gathering information about the topic you intend to create your content around. The danger comes if you repeat content word for word and pass it off as your own! 

To avoid that, always clearly identify the source. (especially in your research notes so you have it at your fingertips when you create your content later). Be sure to prominently give them full credit and provide a backlink to the original, whenever possible. Never leave the impression this is your work.

The same goes for photo or video credits. Another tip: don’t pull curated content from only one source.

Remember, content is a broad term that goes beyond writing. It covers news, tweets, photos, graphics, videos, status updates, RSS feeds, etc.

Here are some easy curation tools to check out:

Paid professional tools are also available. (search google for “content creation software” to find the latest)

Your goal is to have your name and brand associated with quality online content that builds your reputation and your business. Create the perception that you are “everywhere” with a “mix and match” approach. Augment your own content with curated content about your field and consistently pump out the right blend through social media syndication. (sharing on multiple platforms)

Note: don’t simply compile gigantic link lists of existing content; add your own comments and interpretations. This takes some extra time and effort, but google and the other search engines rank curated content with commentary well which will boost your visibility as an expert.

Think of content curation as a valuable free service for your target audience. Like a museum curator, you can use your expert’s discerning eye, knowledge and perspective to guide readers to relevant information that is the best the web has to offer. 


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Janet Vasil

On-Camera, Speaker & Media Coach/Trainer at Vasil Media Group | Your Media Moment & Beyond
Communication Coach, Media Trainer & Founder Janet Vasil is a former award-winning, EMMY®-nominated TV Journalist who helps rising and future business leaders communicate with courage and charisma on-camera, and off. Contact at

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