Copyright, Artists, and Big Companies

In my rss feed this morning was this from Dude Craft.  It is about plagiarism and copyright issues.

This is a hot topic for crafters and we need to know all we can about this.  You can find a free e-book on copyright here

I am troubled by 2 recent incidents of what I believe to be copyright infringement on artists.

Both artists had created something original.  Both have a distinctive style and a narrow focus.  Both are real artists struggling with their art and making beautiful designs.  Both have had their original designs show up in products they did not authorize.  One is in the UK and one in the US.

The UK saga can be found here

The US saga is here

It seems that other artists copied the original artists’ designs and sold them as their own to large companies.  Both of these companies used the designs in products.  And both companies deny their culpability.

Both companies appear to have reacted to the original artists as if the artists were wrong and even a cursory look shows this is not the case.

Both companies have missed an opportunity to create a new partnership with these infringed upon artists.

They could have listened with an open mind and evaluated the artwork and admitted they made a mistake.  They still could come clean and work with the artists rather than referring to lawyers.

They could do the right thing and be honest and fair.

These infringed upon artists do not have the resources that the big companies have – they can’t just call their team of lawyers and make the companies listen.

The only way I can help is:

  1. not purchase anything from these companies until this issue is resolved equitably
  2. contact these companies – ask them to do the right thing
  3. ask you to do the same

The UK company is Paperchase

The US company is Fabri-Quilt

The above are links to contact these companies.  Here is the letter I am emailing to both companies.  I urge you to do the same.  Feel free to copy this letter.

To Whom It May Concern

It has recently come to my attention that  you are not being fair to an artist that has contacted  you about copyright infringement.

To Paperchase, I am referring to Hide n Seek.  To Fabri-Quilt, I am referring to Greetings from Kimberly Shaw

When an artist comes to you with a grievance, before you react in fear, you should listen and investigate the artist’s claim.  Upon seeing the facts, you should be willing to work with the artist to resolve the issue.

I cannot in good conscience support you unless you have done the right thing, so I will not be purchasing your products until I read on the artist’s blog a resolution has been satisfactorily reached.

Sincerely,

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2 Responses

  1. Thanks for your awesome support!! I appreciate you!!! I feel awful for “Hide n Seek” also. It occurred to me that these big companies can so easily fight us with the money they made from selling our designs. I’ve added the link to this post on my blog page if that’s OK. Hug!!!

    • Thank you and it is totally okay to add a link in your blog. Since I found you, I have been following your blog in my rss. Your work is beautiful. I am glad you have been forging ahead and not letting the whole thing drag you down. It is amazing to me that the big companies essentially behave like bullies instead of rational adults. It is so much better for everyone if we each do our best. Unfortunately, neither Paperchase, nor Fabri-Quilt seem to be interested in their Best, but only mediocrity.

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