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Website site stealing designs


#1

I’ve recently come across an overseas site (Peru) which appears to
have stolen images/designs directly from at least 3 US based jewelry
designers, incl. at least one Orchid member. On top of that, they are
underpricing the original artists, incl. one design which the
original artist sells for $240, they are selling for $15! I have
emailed the artists that I have seen copied and informed them of
this, but what can one do when the company is not US based? It does
appear from WHOIS info that the site itself is hosted with a company
in Texas and someone suggested that there may be legal recourse
since they are hosted in the USA, at the very least, the web provider
could be persuaded to drop the client.

Anyone have any suggestions on this?

Jeanne
http://www.jeannius.com


#2

Hi Jeanne,

There are countries who are members of the WIPO and therefore follow
copyright laws nearly identical to ours. Peru, if I’m not mistaken,
has been one of the countries historically known for violating
copyright. However, under the US’s Digital Millenium Copyright Act
(DMCA), if you make the US web host aware of the copyright
violations, they are required to drop the offending member. The web
host can be just as liable as the people who are actually committing
the act.

I may do some more research on Peru and the WIPO and respond
further. I’m not a lawyer, but I just took a very intensive college
course on copyright.

Miachelle


#3

So what site is it? I hope they have stolen my designs. I put them
up on my website so that people can buy the pieces or copy them if
they feel like it. I often tell people how to make my jewellery
designs when they ask me. That happens often, because of the
tutorials on my site.

Hans
http://www.meevis.com
http://hansmeevis.blogspot.com


#4
I've recently come across an overseas site (Peru) which appears to
have stolen images/designs directly from at least 3 US based
jewelry designers, incl. at least one Orchid member 

Here’s another wonderful thing about Orchid. Many eyes looking out
for each other and the industry as a whole. Thanks Jeanne for
responding to this. Rather than finding this post unsettling, I felt
rather good and protected by Jeanne and the entire Orchid family.

I feel that there is a solution, and Orchid will most likely provide
it.


#5
I've recently come across an overseas site (Peru) which appears to
have stolen images/designs directly from at least 3 US based
jewelry 

Hardly a unique occurance. How about the several companies from whom
I’ve gotten spam emails advertising availability of genuine sterling
silver Tiffany jewelry, complete with all hallmarks and genuine
packaging, all for a fraction of the cost of the items from Tiffany
itself. Reading these sites, which usually seem to be in China,
they’re actually proud of their quality and fidelity to the original,
claiming absolute duplication in form, finish, and quality of
manufacture so nobody could tell the difference… Talk about brazen
rip offs…

And of course there are the several (or many?) similar sorts of
sites offering perfect reproductions of various watches, Rolex, Patek
Phillippe, etc. etc.

My suspicion is that some of these sites are likely owned by the
same folks who’s other sites and spam emails promise “genuine” Viagra
at equally improbably prices. Perhaps the thinking is that the fake
Viagra can help you get enthousiastic over the fake jewelry?

But one also has to be a little wary of simple coincidence. I know
one artist who does fine original work and who discovered apparent
copies of a couple of her recent works on a web site, and assumed
she’d been ripped off. In this case, though, it turned out not to be
true, as in fact, the owner of that site had posted those designs
before my friend had sold or published her own, so in that case, it
simply appeared both people had similar taste and ideas…

Peter


#6

Happened to us way back when–a site in Israel lifted images off our
website. You have the right idea–if the website is hosted in the US,
there is recourse. We just emailed the offender and told him we would
notify the host if the images weren’t off his website in 24 hours. He
complied. I would guess hosts in other countries might not like this
kind of behavior either, regardless of what the law is.

Sandy Boothe


#7
My suspicion is that some of these sites are likely owned by the
same folks who's other sites and spam emails promise "genuine"
Viagra at equally improbably prices. Perhaps the thinking is that
the fake Viagra can help you get enthousiastic over the fake
jewelry? 

in this case, the pictures were actually the same, identical images
on the artists sites…and the photographic style matches what the
artist uses. so there is little doubt as to who took which pictures
from whom.

Jeanne


#8
So what site is it? 

it’s peruartandsource.com

I’ve only been able to identify 3 artists and track down their
pictures, but by all means, please check to see if any of you are on
there. They only take images of peru related stones, primarily blue
and pink opal, but also chrysocolla and a few others. The company
has come up in ‘conversation’ online/by email several times this week
as I’ve been researching prices on peruvian blue opal…I just got a
hold of a bunch of large cabs which I am pretty sure are that,
though someone has suggested it could also be pale peruvian gem
silica…


#9

It just bugged me because I’d hate it if that happened to me! I know
someone else who took some of her original finding designs overseas
to look into the possibility of them reproducing them. She decided
against it, but recently, she has seen one of her signature clasps
in ads for a fairly well known findings company, down to an error in
the original design she has since corrected. She wrote the findings
company, but to my knowledge, never got a reply.

Am relieved that one of the artists in this instance, is pursuing
it.

Jeanne


#10

I have recently gone through an incident where a governmental agency
had stolen graphics and text from a website I developed years ago
while I was working within the marine industry as a site developer. I
contacted the “chain of command” and finally got to the person
responsible for the site who said he didn’t know where the files came
from because a lot of people had worked on the site.

I told them they could either remove the files or credit them to me
with proper links. There was quite a delay and I wrote back
explaining that I needed the files for a site I am developing and
that when I put them online I would include a statement that these
were original files copyrighted in 1995 to me and any other use of
these files on the Internet constituted copyright violation and
plagarism and that I would provide a courtesy link to their site.

I just heard yesterday that the site is being redone and the files
will be removed.

I think they just wanted me to go away and were not happy with my
linking to their site.

Louise


#11
several companies from whom I've gotten spam emails advertising
availability of genuine sterling silver Tiffany jewelry, complete
with all hallmarks and genuine packaging, all for a fraction of the
cost of the items from Tiffany itself. Reading these sites, which
usually seem to be in China 

Peter when I was a kid it was called stealing.

Just recently I was sitting in the Oakland airport waiting for my
flight when a man sitting two seats away made a cell phone call. In a
loud voice he asked the person at the other end if he could rip off
’Rubbermaid" products. He continued that his client uses a lot of
’Rubbermaid’ stuff and figured that it was all made in China and
"could he get it cheaper". No problem was the answer.

It seems that if you can pay anything goes in China: also see recent
lead disclosures.

I was surprised by the ordinariness of the interaction and the
public manner in which he conducted that business.

KPK


#12
Peter when I was a kid it was called stealing. 

It is stealing, and it is illegal-- in some countries. It may put
things in perspective a little bit to realize that the concept of
intellectual property is a relatively recent one. Wikipedia puts the
forst use of the term at 1845, and adds: “The term’s widespread
popularity is a much more modern phenomenon. It was very uncommon
until the 1967 establishment of the World Intellectual Property
Organization, which actively tried to promote the term.” Some
attribute the origin of the idea, at least in government-endorsed
form, to Ben Franklin.

It also might be regarded as a “luxury” that developing countries
don’t feel they can afford. Like pollution, deforestation, and use
of harmful pesticides, etc, this is a short-sighted attitude that
has long-term disastrous effects.

Not that the US is exactly enlightened… but don’t get me started.

Noel


#13

Welcome to the real world… Many people don’t publish their
designs for this very reason. When a jewelry designer sells
renderings, they don’t show them, you buy them sight unseen…
Personally, I just keep on going - life’s too short to be suing
people for that, to me. If one is corporate and there’s millions at
stake, sure, but not just out of pride. Anyway, there’s two reasons
why high end web sites use Flash for their sites, and especially
jewelry. One is that they look good and have that techie thing about
them. The other is that the photos are imbedded in a movie - they are
unsaveable by normal means. It’s pretty easy to get them if you have
"real" Flash - not just the player but the authoring program and the
knowledge of how to use it, which relatively few do - but even just
that little bit will deter almost everybody but the most serious
pirates. Yes, it’s bad, yes it’s part of doing business, yes in a
perfect world it wouldn’t happen. Me, I just shrug and move on…I
can do another design, they can’t.

http://www.donivanandmaggiora.com


#14

I’m weighing in on this for several reasons. I’ve created some,
designed some, and have been inspired by many pieces I’ve seen. I
haven’t found the need to copy anyone’s design.

That said, how can we know we aren’t copying something we saw in a
piece of jewelry 20 years ago? I realize these elements are with me
still, and have been shaping my ideas and designs with every pencil
stroke. I say this because I look at everyone’s jewelry. A lot. I
enjoy certain lines or the flow, maybe I’m intrigued with a clasp
design that changes the piece and makes me wonder how I can create
new and innovative clasps that add to the design rather than simply
be a part of it.

That said, I still don’t believe I copy any designs. And I don’t in
the literal sense. But my most interesting situation was a design of
a ring with a spiral. Not wire-work, more solid. Then I found an
image of the exact ring…Norse…made centuries before I thought
about it. LOL I am humbled by the past. We create nothing new unless
we locate an object that has never before existed in the mind of any
human, never has existed in any world before now.

Otherwise…we’re recycling shapes and elements and ideas and
putting them together as suits us at that moment, or on a whim.

Opinions may vary.

Thanks,
Kim


#15
That said, how can we know we aren't copying something we saw in a
piece of jewelry 20 years ago? I realize these elements are with me
still, and have been shaping my ideas and designs with every pencil
stroke. 

It’s always a question, Kim, and a very good one to consider, IMHO.
Even The Beatles accidentally copied a melody once, and they were
surely able to make up their own! We are influenced, and that’s
okay. If I were confronted with such an occurrence in my own work, by
an artist whose work I had seen and evidently been over-influenced
by, I would apologize and desist. What else can ya do? I try to be
careful, but there are things to see all around us, that’s culture!
Just keep moving on, and if we follow our own fascinating paths, most
of what we come up with will be fairly original. Neat story about the
ancient ring. Some of these very simple designs might be coming right
from the materials speaking to the makers, saying," look, you can do
this with me!". Know what I mean?

M’lou


#16

Greetings all;

This is just an add-on to Kim’s thought below about ‘there’s nothing
really new’.

One of my favorite quotes is this:

“There is nothing new except that which we have forgotten”.

What amuses the *&$$ out of me is who’s alleged to have said it.
-Marie Antionette. Not a person you would have associated with deep
thought.

It’s always amused me. Just thought I’d share.

Regards,
Brian Meek.


#17

M’lou,

I definitely know what you mean about the materials speaking. I’ve
been merging components of nature, and it all started when I was half
asleep and playing with the scraps of wire left on the bench (I was
waiting for our girl to come home). I thought I liked what I
saw…nice lines, interesting…I left them to look at later. Next
morning I looked and was astounded by what I saw. No way could I do
that on my own half asleep, it was either a muse nudging my hands or
the metal whispering. (That was after the spiral Viking ring
discovery I’d made)

Also interesting to note…there are many designers I know (some in
other media), and it’s amazing how often we find our creative flow
giving us the same (or very very similar) shapes, colors, designs at
roughly the same time. (This is work not photographed before, just
completed, or even still on the drawing table)

So I am listening to the materials I work with, to the nudgings of
creativity, and following the habits of hands working, moving,
making.

And you have given me another word to mull over. Over-influenced.
Flow or design styles, yes…form, not so good.

I don’t know that there’s much to do when we are not copying
someone’s work. My ‘proof’ is my sketch book, my previous and
subsequent designs that follow a bit of a pattern, my friends who
have watched me struggle with finding a way to put the design into
reality even when I need to learn new skills or arts to do it. I am
grateful that I am creative, or that I am open to the muse over my
shoulder and the materials at hand. I don’t want to copy the designs
of others, I want to speak for myself.

Kim