Jump to content
Jsilvers

Unwelcome Flattery

Recommended Posts

A Chinese website has paid me the sincerest form of flattery by pirating and selling my crochet software, wthout acknowledgement or compensation.  Has anyone else experienced anything similar?   Have I any recourse?

 

 I used Google to send a message on their support site.   Unfortunately, 30  characters in English say a lot less than 30 Chinese characters.

 

It seems that the Chinese have no respect for any form of copyright.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You'll have to talk to a copyright lawyer. If you didn't register your work at the copyright office, it will be very difficult for you. Also, because the thieves are in another country.

 

You can't copyright ideas, so you'd have to prove they are distributing your wording and photos. If they translated it into a Chinese dialect, I don't know how you prove that, unless you know someone who can translate. Your best bet is if they are using photos or charts or diagrams that are yours.

 

It's unfortunate that there are people out there like this and you are put on the defensive.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Are you saying that they pirated a software program that you created?

 

I don't know how that would work.  I second at least having a consultation with a copyright lawyer.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's awful.  Unfortunately there may not be much you can do as other countries Don't enforce copyright and licence issues.  Pirated software, music, movies are very common and easy to find.

 

edited to add, easy to find in Asia shops--some of my coworkers who travel to Asia routinely ask if anyone wants him/her to look for specific pirated stuff to pick up for them .  Sad.

Edited by Granny Square

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Firstly you need to send out a Cease and Desist letter/email giving them 7 working days to answer/remove the illegal item.

 

You need to find out what company are their website hosters. 

 

Are they using your photo's if so you can get them removed very easily.

 

You can then go to the website host company and they can get the website taken down.

 

Good luck it can be done it has been done by many small designers both in The USA and Europe when dealing with copyright thieves in China.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for your replies.

I am a one person operation and developed the software entirely on my own.  Consulting lawyers is way out of my budget. 

I have done some research on the Chinese site, Taobao.  It is known for selling pirated software and other electronic documents.  They probably victimize small time sellers like me because they can get away with it.  They have some other crochet software on their page alse.

For SymblCro, they have posted screen shots from my site, and what looks like a Chinese translation of my FAQ page.  Ironically, on their contact page, they brag that they are honest.

I will try communicating with them directly through Google translate.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's awful, so disheartening for you. How on earth did they get their hands on your software?

 

Sadly, it's not only China , seems from what I read on other sites there are many people out there with either no respect, or no understanding of copyright laws.

 

I hope it all works out in your favour

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's very difficult to get things taken down from some of these Chinese and Russian sites.

 

Here are some things you can do.

 

1. Contact the owner/admin of the site, let them know you are the copyright owner, they don't have permission to distribute your program/pattern/material and demand they remove the infringing material. You may want to give a 72-hour deadline to accomplish this. Include links to the infringing material you want removed.

2. If they don't take it down, find their site host. You can look the website up on whois.com. Email the site host with the same information in #1 above. In this case, you'll also need to include links to your site that establish your ownership of the material in question.

3. If neither of these work, check to see if the site is employing Google Ads. Google does not want their ads appearing on sites that support copyright infringement. Contact Google AdSense with your information and request Google investigate the site for violating the AdSense Terms of Service.

4. Contact Google and ask that the URLs that infringe upon your material be removed from their search results. If you can establish there is enough infringement occurring, Google may deindex the entire site.

 

Hope this helps!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know this is a couple of months old but I wrote an article about pattern piracy, and I think it might have some more ideas for you on how to address this:

 

http://www.riotofdaisies.com/designers-studio/pattern-piracy-7-things-designers-can-fight/

 

Some other ideas would be to contact their payment gateway provider (like PayPal) since this constitutes fraud, and if they have advertisements on their website (especially Google Ad Sense) you can report them there as well. If someone is selling your work, the best way to go after them is to cut off their revenue stream. The tough thing about china is that a lot of their online activity is restricted so they tend to use other Chinese sites which aren't very good about enforcing copyright.

 

Your copyright is valid in China via the Berne Convention, which means your work is copyrighted under Chinese laws that may be different than US laws. China has admitted that they lack the infrastructure to enforce copyright and it's a huge issue that they are trying to address (with pressure from the US and the UN). It might take some time to sort out their mess, but they are working in it.

Edited by Wiste

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×