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Fri Jan 20 2017 22:30:51

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

By: Reader

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Dear Ina,
I long ago set up a Google notification to alert me when the brand name of an item I sell appears on the internet. It helps me know who I am competing with and at what price point. Many others sell the same items and I have no problem with that. 

Today a notice came and I followed it to its source. I was surprised to find that (wholesaler name) was using my photos that I took with my camera and use to sell the same item on eBay and Etsy. They were being used to sell the same item on their site. 

Of course there are no contact phone numbers on the site just a statement telling me what to do if they have infringed on my property rights. It seems to be a matter of course for them. 

I will be contacting their internet provider and anyone else I can to make this more difficult. The notice states it's up to me to protect my intellectual property rights. It's like saying if I get robbed it's my own fault and I have to catch the criminal. We'll see about that,
Donna




Comments (18) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

This user has validated their user name. by: eXtinctBay

Sat Jan 21 09:45:27 2017

I have been selling photos for years. It is simple and necessary to place a small strip of paper with your user name over part of the photo, or use a watermark.

With technology now, one can take a high resolution photo of something online, and produce a quality copy. Any seller of an image must take action and ensure the item cannot be reproduced.

My wife saw something on the news where folks are obtaining fingerprints from hands waving hello or flashing a ''peace sign'' in photos. Must be a market for them (the prints) to be used by identity thieves and fraudsters.

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: RL15 This user has validated their user name.

Sun Jan 22 12:05:23 2017

Send them a take down notice about the picture. Cease and desist.
Sue them for copyright infringement.

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

This user has validated their user name. by: tanzi

Mon Jan 23 00:24:11 2017

Are they selling posters or prints of your images. I am on Bonanza, and one of the sellers found this also, sure enough, i looked up my image, and there it was, they were selling the actual image., I looked up more, and I think they had 17 of my images. I was told NOT to contact them, its a scammer site, and once they have your email, you will get bombarded with spam.....Also, from what i understand, if a watermark is used, Google shopping will reject your item till you remove the watermark.  

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: Louise This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 23 00:28:02 2017

I once had a new seller on Etsy not only use my photographs, but he planned to sell my vintage table I had refurbished. He was selling things from Overstock and everywhere else and using their photos as well. Don't know what he planned to do if he got a seller for my table, guess buy it from me and ship to his customer. He had tripled the price on mine as well as others. Everything was listed as Handmade from wooden sheds to patio metal furniture. I reported him and Etsy removed him.

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

This user has validated their user name. by: tanzi

Mon Jan 23 00:31:49 2017

@Louise, yes i bet that is what he intended to do. try to sell it then buy it from you. Crazy the things people will do!

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: Vigilant Eye On eBay This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 23 01:09:48 2017

Not affiliated with the firm in any way, whether or not one initiates a take down notice through the hosting site and/or through Google, depending upon how valuable your intellectual property is, sellers, photographers, and artists often find a need to utilize a rights ownership management service such as Digimarc.  With Digimarc, your watermark and rights information can be rendered invisible and is nearly impossible to remove, regardless of how many modifications and/or saved variations of the original content have been made.

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: Chicago48 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 23 01:37:50 2017

How do you setup a google alert for when your items are on the internet?

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: Eagle This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 23 01:50:25 2017

I've had that happen constantly, but it was the reverse. They were copying pictures and descriptions from my website and posting on Ebay without permission. They'd mark up the price double and even triple of what I was selling it for. One lady had 2/3 of my website selection on Ebay. Guess if the item would sell they would buy it from me and forward on to their buyer. I noticed the same people were doing it to 2-3 other website at the same time making it look like they had a very large inventory.

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: Moonwishes This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Mon Jan 23 01:54:15 2017

I've only run into this once, although I'm sure more have done it. Someone else had their photos stolen and noted that mine were on the site as well. I would call the seller lazy as they stole all the photos they needed rather than just making their own, but it seems that stealing would take more work as you have to find a photo of each item you want to sell. Their store looked like a royal mishmash as they weren't fussy about their photos and used my nice clear ones along with ones that someone had thrown the item on the floor and snapped a photo of it to photos that looked like the old 'didn't get your film developed for 2-3 years' yellow/orange look and then others taken from the manufacturers website. It was a mess and I certainly hoped that they would be quickly out of business.

What I have found strange is the attitude these thieves seem to have, that they can take the photos as they are out on the internet so it isn't stealing. Kind of the same answer I got from a man when I caught his kids in my strawberry patch and he just shrugged and said kids will be kids, no big deal. Was to me as they were eating my future jam and frozen strawberries for the winter.

There is a pervasive sense of entitlement running through our country and unless something is done about it, our country is going to go down the toilet, no matter who is president. No you aren't entitled to use or sell any photo you find on the internet, no you aren't entitled to pick as many strawberries as you want from someone's garden unless they tell you that you may. No you may not steal people's listings or intellectual property, or rebrand someone's else's invention and have those nice folks in China make you some fake ones. No you aren't entitled to get rich quick without working or by stealing other's stuff. No you aren't entitled to claim something arrived broken, refuse to return it and still demand a refund. It is disgusting.

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: OzKid This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 23 02:07:45 2017

Had some lowlife bike shop owner going broke rip hundreds of my photos. I sent the usual lawyers cease and desist letters and he rang and told me to F.. Off - literately. I sued, $40k later he was bankrupt, lost his bike shop, his 3 houses and his vintage car collection. Last I heard he was working as a laborer. I got nothing from him, BUT I saved that in sales in the first 6 months. He had cost me tens of thousands! I now send the Judgement to any new copyright infringers and have had 100% success - usually within minutes of email! 7 years of photos on the cheap - no way!

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: Vigilant Eye On eBay This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 23 02:29:04 2017


Re: ''How do you setup a google alert for when your items are on the internet?''

While there is no such service for Google alerts, with some limitations, Digimarc's Professional Service provides search result reports with information garnered from continuous crawls of major public web sites.

For Digimarc's service to work, your uploaded images must be branded with hidden Digimarc supplied identifiers.

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: elcheapoposters This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Mon Jan 23 06:18:54 2017

This is a funny issue these days...

Ebay allows third parties to use seller's images, descriptions, etc. to sell via alternate means ( partners, affiliates, etc. ) without your explicit permission - you give that permission when you list on ebay, and most other venues.

Over the upcoming months you'll be seeing a lot more of this as Ebay is releasing the new BUY/SELL apis - these allow third party sites to directly sell your products without ever needing to go to ebay. It's a benefit to sellers - more exposure = more sales - however quite a few sellers seem to get annoyed at this thinking their items are being 'stolen' or misrepresented.

Keep an eye out for more sites selling for you, and more sales as a result and don't be alarmed when someone else appears to be selling your product using your photo.

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: lisapar This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 23 07:10:45 2017

Maybe I don't understand the problem, but if you have one-of-a-kind items, and another seller is listing your items, then when it sells they buy from you and ship to their customer -- your business, in essence, is receiving free advertising.  They sell, then you sell, win-win.

This happened to me a year ago -- I noticed a buyer was purchasing the same item over and over again from my website, but shipping to different addresses.  I contacted him, and while at first he was rather reserved and not giving much info, I finally broke through the ice and we developed a working relationship.  He sells on Amazon, and was listing my product on the platform with a 30% mark-up. Again, I didn't see the problem in it...he was selling my product, and I benefited when he made a sale.
I didn't mind him using my images because it helped produce a sale.

However, I can see this being a problem if you don't sell one-of-a-kind items and another seller hi-jacked your images to sell their own inventory. As someone wrote above, contact the seller and use cease and desist language, or you will sue for compensation for every sale they made using your photos. That scare tactic is usually enough for them to take down the images.

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: quovadis12345 This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 23 08:57:36 2017

This is a huge problem for me as well. I have a photo studio on the premises and we take high-end pictures of our hand bags. Each photo is marked with our name and copyright symbol.
Last year I found all our bags on Terapeak.
Terapeak is a subscription web site and they not only show all my photos, but copy the descriptive I write of each bag. They then give a competitor the price I sold the bag for. People pay for Terapeak and they are using my work to unjustly enrichen themselves. Their response was that this was an Ebay service.
This is what I normally write people infringing.
"N.B. (Please note) that all pictures are custom photographs which we, JAPILLA©, own exclusive rights to, and photographed in a professional setting for your pleasure.
These exclusive rights include the right to reproduce the Work, and to publish and communicate the Work to the public (including by way of sale, broadcast or putting the Work online). It is an infringement of copyright to do any of the acts comprised in the copyright in relation to the whole or a substantial part of the Work, or to authorize such an act, without the permission or licence of the copyright owner."

I then ask them to remove the artwork.    

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: Randy This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 23 09:19:56 2017

On eBay, a seller from Israel was using my pic of an item I was selling on Amazon. I contacted them about it and accused them of stealing and just plain being lazy. A short time later the listing was removed.  

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: timeaftertime This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 23 11:51:13 2017

If I'm not mistaken, watermarks can be removed by image thieves using higher end software.

The best idea, as suggested above, is to cut a small piece of paper (or post-it) write on it: (copyrighted) your userid or store name. Then stick it over a part of the image that can't be reproduced.

Indeed, the attitude of the younger generations is all about Me-Me-Me and anyone else's feelings and rights do not matter. This seems to be getting worse, not better.

It is unbelievable that people are beginning to feel so entitled to do whatever they want, whenever they want, to whomever they want.
 

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: TexasTwister This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 23 11:53:37 2017

Funny story related to this. I purchased photo licenses from dreamtime.com for photos I was using on a website. While looking at server logs, I noticed that my images were being used elsewhere. I found that a Thailand educational site was using my image links (being served from my own server no less) on their own site.  Their site taught people who spoke Thai how to speak english.

I sent emails to the website requesting that they cease. They did not. So after about a month, I renamed my images, updated my website, and replaced the original images with images of the same original name. HOWEVER, the new images were made of all typed words. When the new images were served to the Thai website, they now explained to the website viewer (in Thai and English) that the owner of the website was a thief, dishonest, and should not be trusted! It worked! The offending website pages were redesigned.

Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos   Wholesaler Copies Seller's Photos

by: timeaftertime This user has validated their user name.

Mon Jan 23 11:57:02 2017

@ elcheapoposters:  

You say, ''Ebay allows third parties to use seller's images, descriptions, etc. to sell via alternate means ( partners, affiliates, etc. ) without your explicit permission - you give that permission when you list on ebay, and most other venues.''

Yes, they do but there is a place to choose/click in Seller preferences, to tell them NOT to use your photos in this manner.  I ran across it recently. Now, that begs the question whether eBay will honor your choice, or just ignore it .....    



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