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ArtistCreator avatar image
ArtistCreator asked ·

My exact designs are being copied, stolen and posted on other sites!

Hello. I am an artist/creator and have been listing my designs on Merch since the first week of February. Now on tier 100. I have just discovered many of my designs have been stolen and posted for sale on other sites, specifically teespring and bonanza and there may be more I haven't found yet. They are exact copies, pixel-for-pixel, including my name/copyright in the design, and a few on bonanza are even using photos of the shirt mockups from Merch!

If I was selling simple text-based shirts I may not care, but these are my own hard work and creativity, unique works - illustrations created by me and that I put my heart and soul into. Having cheapo copies sold on these scammy sites is damaging my brand.

I have attempted to send these sites and sellers takedown notices, but whether they'll do it is one thing, and the possibility/probability of someone else doing it again is another. What else can I do to prevent this from happening? Is there anything Amazon can do to prevent this in general or assist individual artists specifically?

Thank you

merch by amazoncopyright
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I am having the same problem. My exact designs (pixel by pixel ripoff) are on Passionateee, Arc Tee, Veterans Tribute Shop, Atok Express, Tasty Safe and several more. Has anyone figured out how to stop this?

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FocusedOnResults avatar image FocusedOnResults newuser-aeaee2e9-3e9f-46cd-8543-e1e9c076e58e ·

Hello - At this time, there is not a way to halt copycats on all platforms in one swoop. The matter has grown considerably worse in the past two years. Before I may see one or two copied after awhile on various sites. Now I see them copied, often within hours and like you, on multiple sites.

Merch and TeeSpring actively police listings and both are quick to pull copycats. However, you need to take the time to locate the copycat(s) and contact the POD platform.

I am hoping programmers come up with a way to decline the listing immediately before it is posted. I am sure they see the increase in copycats the same as we do.

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Butterfly avatar image
Butterfly answered ·

I just saw 2 of mine Teespring. :(

I had an account at Teespring as I tried selling there. But I didn't really care for it. I filled out the report forms. Part of my evidence was a past link to my design which didn't sell. It shows the date. From what I gather there is a lot being stolen and uploaded there. Teespring doesn't seem to do much, and imo comes off as complicit. To top it off when you report the campaigns, they give the thieves your contact information.

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FocusedOnResults avatar image
FocusedOnResults answered ·

Hello - Teespring has a very fast response and the issue of copycat reporting is quite simple. Reach out to them - include the url of the copycat.

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Well. This is good. The user uploaded one of my designs as 9 different campaigns. So far 2 are down. I guess I'll wait to see tomorrow. The other design it still up.

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CreativeDirector avatar image
CreativeDirector answered ·

Welcome to MBA :)

This problem has been going on for a long time with no resolution. Recently Amazon added a "wrinkle" effect to the product preview with hopes that it'll make it harder to steal artwork - but it hasn't been rolled out to all accounts yet.

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Butterfly avatar image
Butterfly answered ·

All my stolen designs designs at Teespring have been taken down. Later I discovered that mine too were also at Bonanza. I sent them DMCA notices. And now all have been taken down there as well.

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North of 52 avatar image
North of 52 answered ·

What happened? Did Amazon take the copycats down? I am faced with the same situation right now. I have three designs that I paid a graphic designer to design and it's part of the North of 52 branding. Copycats stole all three designs and undercut on price. I filed the copyright violation form. What else can I do?

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newuser-4de2f25b-7c6b-468d-b48f-4425464c39f7 avatar image
newuser-4de2f25b-7c6b-468d-b48f-4425464c39f7 answered ·

Me to, have a design on RedBubble, stolen, now on Amazon, my design is crystal clear, the copycat lifted a super low resolution one and put it up, plus they used my brand name in title? contacted Amazon , no response. kizado is the offender, I read on the net there's a lot of Vietnamese outfits doing this stuff.

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torsocrazy avatar image
torsocrazy answered ·

I know a great solution! Make the minimum file-size requirements ENORMOUS.

The final PNG that displays on the website, it's always a smaller PNG file— like 2-3MB. This is what's getting stolen. Go ahead and set the lowest bar at 200MB.

Follow me:

I create a design and upload my 220MB EPS. It takes REALLY long to upload, but it's for the sake of protection.

The admin system would detect the filesize and proceed through the rest of the process.

Anyone else on Amazon Merch who STOLE the artwork from the website would have the lower-res PNG. If they add that artwork to their graphics software, they have to scale it CONSIDERABLY (10x or so) to reach the 200MB mark. That artwork would look like HOT GARBAGE in order to get it into the system.

This wouldn't stop third-party sites from stealing the standard lower-res image, but Amazon could lead the fight.

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Can you please explain how to save the file in Illustrator?

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newuser-fdda4d30-d008-4253-a106-a5f657013b8c avatar image
newuser-fdda4d30-d008-4253-a106-a5f657013b8c answered ·

There needs to be legislation to match the current explosion of online sites including a public "bad actors" list for websites like the ones that stole ours as well as the host sites. Please don't buy from Etsymarts.com, TeeHerivar. com, wehearttees.com, Sunshinetshirt.com.

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