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I Am Sousababy and I Never Joined HubPages

By Edited Apr 24, 2015 2 10

Why HubPages Will Fail and What Every Writer Online Needs to Know

Screenshot of My Stolen Identity, Photo and Work on HubPages
Credit: RoseWrites on InfoBarrel / All rights reserved

Blecksy is My

Daughter's Article

Today, my daughter asked me more about how and why my work, photo, and old Squidoo pen name is showing up on HubPages. She's fairly young, so I tried my best to explain the situation.

When I showed her the profile page that HubPages put up of me (without my permission), it showcased an article that my daughter and I created on Squidoo.

Her reaction wasn't good, she cried out, "Blecksy, but that's my word Mommy!"

Then she asked me, "How do they make money from that Blecksy article on there?"

I told her, "Well, on that article (which was created on Squidoo), HubPages places advertisements in the sidebars. HubPages gets paid by advertisers to place them there. So, whenever people online read my (our) article the ads get viewed too."

I didn't get into CTR or Amazon modules, etc. All she needs to know is this: Without my permission, HubPages has taken my profile photo, my old pen name, and 293 of my articles and is collecting ad revenue, Amazon and eBay royalties from my work.

How This Affects You

And why the truth needs to be exposed

Out of the thousands of writers on Squidoo, there are bound to be some that were away from their computers for the last two weeks of August 2014. By percentages, some were probably deathly ill and may have even passed away in the meantime.

What about them? How many stolen identities are now on HubPages because of the deal that Seth Godin made with Paul Edmondson?

And if you think people were given ample notice and any kind of choice in the matter - you have been misled.

To recap:

If you opted out of the transfer to HubPages, you needed to delete your content by August 29th, 2014. By doing so, you forfeited your ad pool revenue for the previous pay period. The ONLY thing Squidoo was going to pay you was Amazon and eBay royalties.

And yet, Squidoo (Corey Brown) stated numerous times that "lenses would NOT transfer until September 2nd, 2014."

Guess who gets ALL the ad pool revenue for July and August? Squidoo does (did). How on earth is this fair?

Your work remains posted until September 2nd even if you opt out - but YOU LOSE your ad revenue by opting out of the transfer. WHAT?

Oh, but if you were fooled by the words "you'll be paid any attributable revenue" or "you'll be paid as usual" you are not alone. It was a play on words only. Corey Brown still meant "only Amazon and eBay royalties - Squidoo is keeping YOUR share of the ad pool."

How Can Another Platform Remove

the link to my latest work (here on InfoBarrel)?

My stolen profile on HubPages opened up (HubPages removed link to my latest work)
Credit: RoseWrites on InfoBarrel / All rights reserved
How the Squidoo/HubPages Deal Likely Went Down
Credit: RoseWrites on InfoBarrel / All rights reserved

Why This Matters to You

If for some reason you are happily working away on another platform or your own blog and HubPages can simply remove the link to where your latest work can be found (and you can be contacted), this will negatively impact your ability to be accessible online to potential employers or writing opportunities.

HubPages has found a way to make it seem that I joined HubPages (which I did not) and for anyone viewing my work there (posted without my permission) a potential employer would probably think I'm not available for freelance work.

And here's the kicker: according to HubPages Terms of Use,[1] HubPages is allowed  

"a worldwide, royalty-free, and non-exclusive license, for as long as Your Hub is displayed on HubPages and for a commercially reasonable time..."


Can someone please tell me what a "commercially reasonable time" is? 

How this might affect you is that even if you did transfer your work from Squidoo to HubPages, it means HubPages can keep your work online (collecting ad pool revenue and ?) until oh, I'll take a guess here, the Christmas season is over.

It Gets Worse

In the case where you want to delete your content on HubPages, did you know that HubPages states the following in their Terms of Use:

"In the event that the Agreement is terminated by You (pursuant to HubPages’ receipt of Your written termination notice) the entire amount of an Earned Balance in Your account will be permanently forfeit by You (and You hereby waive any claim relating to the dispute of such payment and disclaim any and all interest in such funds)."

Wonder what HubPage's "written termination notice" is all about? I do too. Apparently, whenever they do acknowledge receipt of it, you give up all the money you've earned. So, you can't just quit and get paid everything you earned.

Here's something else to keep in mind

"Your participation in the HubPages Earnings Program may be suspended or approval withheld until HubPages can validate that You have a valid account with approved payment mechanism. Payment mechanisms may be edited, added, or removed at any time, in HubPages sole discretion."

But What if You Never Joined HubPages?

Does this mean, that all these people who didn't transfer their work, who never pushed button or link on HubPages but have found out that their work is now on HubPages (like me) will, ah be forced to provide their payment information to HubPages?

Hmm, that sounds illegal to me.  Of course, much of this is illegal, which is why HubPages has been reported to the IC3.

More Proof

Today, I read an article titled Seth Godin's Failed Squidoo Site Sells Out to HubPages[2] and found more proof that this was indeed a sale of user information and content (without the permission of authors).

Addendum April 24th, 2015:

The author of the article referenced above confirmed that money was involved in this business transaction. S/he asked a high ranking staff member of HubPages. And the answer was "yes."

Note: I sense that the article I've referenced above may become inaccessible in the near future.

After reading through numerous comments on this person's article, I feel it wise that writers on HubPages be prepared for the worst.

Because if HubPages feels they are entitled to keep my profile photo and work on their site (earning revenue ONLY for them), imagine what will happen when people want to leave HubPages? And what will happen when all these profiles (that were never consented to) are found out by the authorities and collecting money ONLY for HubPages?

Oh and if you thought HubPages pays better than Squidoo, think again. Guess what else is stated in HubPages Terms of Use?

HubPages reserves the right to modify the Impression program and/or HubPages Earnings program, including without limitation the percentage share or payment structure, at any time in its sole discretion.


By using the Impression services, You acknowledge and agree that HubPages will not be responsible for, and will not be obligated in any manner to repay You for, any lost earnings.

So, If You Are On HubPages Now

You may want to consider joining another writing platform or working on your own blog. I predict that within 6 months, HubPages will be penalized (by Google and/or legal authorities).

Obviously, I highly recommend InfoBarrel and here are a few articles that are a worthwhile read:

A Newbie's Guide to Publishing on InfoBarrel by classicalgeek (who is extremely helpful in the forum too).

InfoBarrel Success Story: VicDillinger who goes beyond the call of duty to help out in the forum. His writing is so engaging that even when I have a migraine, I must finish reading his work - it's that good.

Lastly, after only a month on InfoBarrel I wrote a charity article (it's just a comparison to Squidoo and not nearly as detailed as classicalgeek's info).



Sep 24, 2014 10:25am
I've also wondered about what sort of penalties are coming to HubPages for accepting a bunch of Squidoo work, including plenty that was illegally sold without the authors of the work even being asked. Many authors consented to the transfer due to the way they sprung it on everyone with little time to do anything else - and they ridiculously transferred and are displaying the work of authors who didn't consent too. Sounds like big trouble is coming.
Sep 24, 2014 11:24am
Oh I think so too Tano.

I (like others) thought my work would just disappear offline or that HubPages would send an email asking for permission to publicly display my (our) content. But the first email I received from HubPages (not opened) has the subject line "sousababy: Your Lenses Have Been Imported!" - like as if announcing it with an exclamation mark makes it legal??

And what about people who've been working offline for months (perhaps away from their computers), how can HubPages display their profile photo and all their Squidoo work and write "Joined ?? days ago" yet, unless these people submit their payment info to HubPages, they won't be paid??

Guess anyone who has passed away in the meantime has unknowingly given HubPages their identity and work to profit from too. I wonder how many fake identities are on HubPages because of this.

And out of my 293 articles on Squidoo (some Squidoo-related or time-sensitive), I wouldn't have bothered even putting many of them on InfoBarrel (or without a thorough rewrite). I gather that the quality of work stolen did not matter that much - if so, Google is bound to penalize HubPages sooner than later.

I also believe that HubPages will drastically change their payment structure if lawsuits become costly for them. They might have already been banking on dealing with a few - but overall they can keep plenty of profits from people who opted-in and even from those who want to leave HubPages.

Remember, people need to notify HubPages in writing that they wish to have their work removed - and by doing so, they give up any earnings in the process.
Sep 25, 2014 2:09am
Wow glad I deleted all my squidoo articles. Lengthening and re written and putting on IB. have fun Squids.
Sep 25, 2014 3:35am
And by deleting your Squidoo articles by or before Aug. 29th, you know you gave up your rightful portion of the ad pool for June, July, and most of August - right? All you will receive is eBay and Amazon royalties in your final payment.

I'm glad I filed an IC3 complaint instead, actually - and videotaped my effort to delete my work on August 31st at midnight. Because Corey Brown insisted lenses wouldn't transfer until Sept. 2nd, there's no reason why I shouldn't receive ALL of my ad pool revenue.

Plus with what HubPages has decided to do (post my identity and articles without first asking my permission is unlawful). Not sure you read my other article or not shar-On, but I'm claiming losses from that transaction too.

Oh and one more thing: filing an IC3 report is free (no one needs a lawyer to proceed).
Sep 26, 2014 2:47pm
I did a thorough reading HP's Terms and it took forever to find what I was looking for; earnings info. With all the talk about how great it was on the forums I was considering it as a secondary platform but quickly changed my mind. As soon as I read the info about the selling out bit I had to walk away from laptop for a while before I did something that would cause permanent damage.

After the breather, I hunkered down and went in lens by lens to copy all present info including links to videos and sites. Was up to 3 to 4 something in the morning on the east coast. They changed the payout threshold so I didn't bother sticking around but then they spring at very most last minute that it was changed back to the dollar amount.

Loads of expletives passed through my head. If not for that post directing people to this article on a user's blog I wouldn't have found infobarrel on my own. What was interesting when I actually submitted my first article was that the QA people caught loads of issues and errors in my article that went unnoticed for years while on Squidoo; I honestly had no idea and glad it was brought to my attention.

With that in mind, I did a major revamp of mmo article followed by my initial article on urban legends. The big shocker is that I earned more here within the first two weeks of my articles being published than in the first few months of my lenses being up for viewing. I'm surprised HP hasn't come under fire with its policy prior to the buyout.

Bloo is nice representative as how things aren't what they used to be in terms of quality and appreciation. My meager 0.85 from my first ever Amazon sale hasn't arrived if at all but I'm not going to hold my breath. Thanks for the update Rose; its to come across someone who truly cares about what others have to say.
Sep 27, 2014 8:24am
Yeah, I believe the last minute timing and deadlines imposed on lensmasters was intentional (and yet, I'm certain this scam to sell content and user information was planned for months).

I hope more people will file IC3 reports (I know of a couple who are or have already) besides me.

It's obvious that people were under duress when they either agreed to the transfer (by clicking that big green button on their dashboard) or by getting fed up and deleting their work/accounts by or before August 29th (which also caused them to lose their rightful share of the ad pool for that pay period).

I think it's important for every writer on line to NOT allow this kind of transaction to happen. Because if HubPages can use my profile photo, bio, and all my work on their website withOUT asking me first - but then make it a stipulation that I MUST give them my payment info (or else I don't get paid) this would be a horrible precedent for every writer online.

I just don't want to see this become something acceptable - I'm sure it's illegal.

Thank you once again for checking out my work on this issue. Oh and btw, I have no idea what you meant by "Bloo" is nice representative, did you mean Squidoo?
Sep 27, 2014 8:32pm
Bloo with Blecksy sticker from the show Foster's home for imaginery friends. It was a good show I watched while in high school and then strange cartoons came on that made little to no sense. When I started working online things were straightforward but not that's gone down hill in a quick minute. (much like squidoo)

Wholly shrapnel! I didn't think the transfer involved comments made on lenses. I did a web search to see if my squid user name came up anywhere and besides my twitter posts from swagbucks my name showed up on HP in some users' posts in the comments section. Had no idea either that I actually commented on your work either.
Sep 27, 2014 9:14pm
Ohh, yes, sorry . . I forgot about the Bloo (I had my head thinking you meant Squidoo).

And yeah, it feels wrong that comments transferred over to HP as well (without anyone's consent).

What bothers me about this whole transaction becoming "legal" or universally accepted is that it sets a dangerous precedent for every writer online. We should NOT ever lose our right to access our work, our identity, and our means to earn an honest income online.

Both Squidoo and HubPages have (had) identical wording in their terms of service/use stating they "do NOT own the content." So there is no legal way that they can be allowed to sell and profit from our hard work, identity, and comments without our express permission first.

If Squidoo and HubPages are allowed to "get away" with this transaction, what's to stop any platform from stealing identities and work from people who are deceased or no longer working online? Or other platforms to "merge" and sell user info and work to some 3rd party (without ever getting the permission of content owners and authors first).

This case needs to be the example of what needs to be enforced online to protect writers and the public. Can you imagine the public asking an author on HubPages (who is deceased) a question and / or buying something from their article? Something feels very wrong (fraudulent) about that.
Apr 25, 2015 8:04am
I am also a Squid refugee. I've totally given up on revenue sharing sites and gone to Blogger. It may take a while to build traffic but it's my own. I've been sold twice (Squidoo and Seekyt) and enough is enough. I did drink the Kool-Aid and give HubPages my payment info. I've now republished on Blogger and deleted everything from HP. If Google closes/sells blogger, I'll just bite the bullet and pay as little as possible to set up on Wordpress host. Always have plans B, C D etc.
Apr 30, 2015 6:53pm
Yeah, good advice. Luckily there are 26 letters in the alphabet. Thanks for dropping by and commenting. Take good care, Rose
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  1. "HUBPAGES TERMS OF USE." HubPages. 23/09/2014 <Web >
  2. Writer Fox "Seth Godin's Failed Squidoo Site Sells Out to HubPages." HubPages. 23/09/2014 <Web >

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