Sunday, 4 June 2017


A little word about copyright, if I may.

In 2004, I uploaded for the first time a languages resource website called MFL Sunderland (you may have heard of it).  It contained 99% of the language resources I have ever made.  Then, in April 2014, MFL Sunderland ceased to exist, and I moved its content to a new site, Light Bulb Languages.  It continues to contain 99% of the resources I have ever made, as well as a number of resources that have been donated by kind and generous users.

All the resources are available to users free of charge, but they are not copyright-free.  Every resource has a copyright statement giving the website name, the URL, the year it was made and the name or initials of the person who made it.

This afternoon I have, once more, found copies of my own resources available on TES Resources.  And the user offering them is not me.  In this instance, the resources are being offered for free, and so I have left blunt reviews on each of them detailing their provenance, and also giving links to the originals.  A few months ago, I received a message from a user to say that they had seen resources of mine being offered for sale on TES Resources.  Sure enough, many of my resources were there, with my copyright statements still on them in most cases, being sold on TES Resources, by one user.  I reported it to TES, the resources were taken down and the user has since deleted that account.

Neither of these cases is an isolated incident.  Neither is TES Resources the only guilty site, but it is the main one.  Neither is this problem confined to language teachers - I have been corresponding today with an English teacher who has had the same thing happen to them.

This is wrong.  Why should other teachers make a profit out of my work that I offer to them for free?  Why should other teachers get the praise and the nice comments, when it's my work?  It's wrong, and it's theft.

So this is my way of saying PLEASE respect other peoples' copyright.  Think about how it makes the original authors feel to find their hard work being plagiarised.

Thanks for reading.

For your reference, the Light Bulb Languages copyright statement is here.


  1. I do understand how you feeI, and although I am not sharing ressources at your scale, I have been sometimes feeling disappointed by the lack of aknowledgement but at the end I remind myself that I am making a favour to the students and it makes me feel better. I have been using your ressources since I started teaching, but never had a chance to thank you, so here we go, merci beaucoup pour tout votre travail!

  2. So irritating. Speaking as one of the people who are honoured to have resources on Lightbulb Languages, and who has used your ideas *SO* many times, I find it hard to fathom how people can be so ignorant... I steer well clear of TES Resources, mainly because I have found a fair amount of the stuff on there to be pretty dull, often rather mistake-ridden, and also because I actually enjoy creating my own stuff! Good luck with the ongoing battle against the plagiarists! ;-)