Should you curate other peoples content or aggregate it?

Should you curate other peoples content or aggregate it?


▶ Is it a good practice to combine small portions of content from other sites? – YouTube.

I think that this is such an important video for bloggers to see and I wanted to provide my thoughts on it. Original content vs. curated content vs. aggregated content is a confusing issue.

 Content Curation:

  1. Content curation is the process of collecting, organizing and displaying information relevant to a particular topic or area of interest. Services or people that implement content curation are called curators. Curation services can be used by businesses as well as end users.

I really like using the “official” definitions for terms and then breaking them down into my definition. So here is what I consider content curation:

When you find an article that someone has written and you want to a) share it with your people and b) add your on perspective and comments. As long as you do not steal the entire piece of content that was written you are not stealing content but rather you are curating.

For example, as you see above I have taken a video that Matt Cutts made and I am using it in this article. This blog post is an example of curation. I am fully giving credit to Matt Cutts and Google. I have also curated a definition from wikipedia and I am expanding on it.

This example is really easy to understand in the example of a video but it becomes a bit more grey when it comes to written content. In the blog post that I just recently released “Do you have any blogging goals?” I curated some content from a great website called My Strategic Plan because they had some information that really inspired me and that I thought would inspire readers. I did not copy their content and pretend that it was mine and I did not copy an entire page of content. Instead I took a specific piece of information that I wanted to share and talk about, credited them clearly with their company name and links back to them and then expanded on the idea as it is related to blogging. (Ironically, the article that I wrote was about content curation.)

Content Aggregation:

  1. The process of compiling and publishing syndicated web content, including news and video. Commonly mistaken with content curation, content aggregation offers less control over the specificity and customization of content published. Commonly a compilation of automated RSS feeds.

My definition of content aggregation is essentially when you take someone else’s content and put it word for word on your website.

Aggregation is a much more grey area and unless it is done super well I would not recommend doing it at all. My audience for this blog is small business onwers who want to blog about their business and/or bloggers who want to blog as a business and in both of those instances it is important for you to offer your own opinion on your blog. In these cases content curation can serve you well because you are offering an opinion or expanding on an idea, which makes you seem like more of an expert in your field. However, if all that you do is collect other people’s data and share it without adding value then you just seem like a great collector.

A great example of content curation, maybe even the best that I have seen, is by ewebstyle. These guys do a weekly podcast that I never miss and what they do is take a blog post by someone else and go over it, offer their own opinion and break it all down. They do a wonderful job and I highly recommend that you check them out.

Coming up with original content while staring at a blank page can be a real challenge for us all. Have you considered content curation for your blog? What other good examples of content curation have you seen? What are your thoughts on this content challenging issue?

About the Author

Renee is wild for WordPress and on fire to empower small business owners with the inspiration, tools and strategies for a healthy blog. SMU CAPE instructor, developer, podcaster. Follow @Iteachblogging on Twitter. Get her FREE SEO Guide Here:

Leave a Reply 1 comment