Well, ladies and gentlemen (and Google, if you're listening)...
It appears I've been Scroogled.
I took the advice of another poster and used Copyscape.com and Plagiarism checker (http://www.plagiarismchecker.com/url/), to research instances of plagiarism/pirating of my original, copyrighted contents to see if 'duplicate content' issues might be affecting my rankings and traffic. After spending two days checking every single page on my site (which contains only about 100 articles), I found over 21,687 illegal and unauthorized copies of my articles posted on other other websites around the world. That's just a conservative estimate.
I'm absolutely devastated and overwhelmed by what I've discovered. It literally brought me to my knees.
Based on preliminary estimates, about 80-90% of those pirated copies of my articles have ads in them, or have been used for purposes of gaming the search engines for SEO, to improve the ranking of commercial sites. Most of the sites that have the full copy of my articles also have GOOGLE ADSENSE ADS in them. Tens of thousands of people all over the world are profiting from my work.
How is one person supposed to track down over 21,000 articles and have them removed? That figure doesn't include the onerous task of tracking down domain owners, web hosting providers, Yahoo! answers, Amazon's Ask, Google Blogger, foreign domain and IP addresses. Spending time trying to have these articles removed doesn't even begin to address the earnings my work has generated for EVERYBODY BUT ME. The commercial harm I've suffered as result of this theft on an unprecedented scale is staggering to me. I would argue that Google's Adsense program not only actively encourages this kind of theft, but enables and rewards it.
Google continues to make obscene profits by exploiting the work of people like me. What are you using your profits for, Google? To hire more 'brilliant' engineers, pay them handsome salaries so they can buy beautiful homes for their families?
I'm losing my home.
I've had big plans for many years to expand my enterprise to include online video, programming, and education support programs, as well as build interactive museums and learning centers to encourge and inspire American students to pursue careers in science and technology. All this time, I've been begging for scraps from Google's table, unable to scrape together enough money to take care of my family, while they, and everyone else it seems, have been robbing me blind.
What remedy do I have? Let's see a show of hands here from everyone who thinks Google will do the honorable thing and turn over some of their ill-gotten gains to me? Anyone?
It seems I'm just another annoying little flea on the back of the big dog, Google.