Yahoo India Denies Stealing Recipes

    February 16, 2007

Following claims that Yahoo India stole content from some other businesses’ blogs, the company’s representatives want everyone to know that “we do not admit of [sic] any copyright violation.” The content in question, by the way, was a recipe.

According to Inji Pennu, the recipe belongs to a woman named Suryagayathri, and was used by Yahoo as part of a new portal’s beta version. “They have copied some . . . of her recipes word by word,” Pennu asserted. “The only thing is that they changed the picture.”

She went on to describe another incident in which Yahoo India lifted content from a small magazine, only to quietly take it down upon request.

Amit Agarwal looked into it, and was able to get the company to break its silence. “The Malayalam story was provided to us by (the content provider) on the express representation that they are duly authorized by the author of the story to publish it,” responded an unnamed employee.

That’s understandable, although perhaps not comforting. But Agarwal points out something strange: “the slightly worrying part here is that they are asking users to follow-up with WebDunia to report copyright violations in future.”

This isn’t the first time Yahoo has faced allegations of “copying” someone, either. Late last year, there was a very messy affair in which Yahoo’s Jeremy Zawodny and Google’s Matt Cutts went back and forth over a related issue. This Yahoo India problem isn’t likely to grow nearly as large or ugly, but it is nonetheless causing some raised hackles.

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