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Author Topic: Examples of blatant copycat stock-photo plagiarism  (Read 8688 times)

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« on: March 09, 2012, 00:49 »
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Here is a terrible example of plagiarism I found on Shutterstock. The original image (Preto Perola) is one of the most popular images (search Valentine) on the site. Over 200,000 images later (three/four weeks?) there's the outrageous copy by Marcel Schauer posted - based on the individual file numbers. Apart from the obvious copycat photograph, the title of the image and every single keyword is identical! There is however one difference, the image quality of the plagiarised copy is rubbish which is why is does not sell so well. He has even posted a series of his copycat images absolutely identical to Preto Perola's but all equally a lower standard of technical ability.

This is the most obvious example I have seen for a while - Take a bow Marcel Schauer - and hang your head in shame!

Maybe this thread could be a 'name and shame' thread showing other such blatant examples. I hope the various library admins check in now and then to this thread and remove any such outrageous offenders images from they're own sites.

Creative inspiration is one thing but this is just taking the p-i-s-s.


« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2012, 03:19 »
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Nobody likes copycats, but is it really right to appoint yourself as prosecutor, court and judge? Innocent before proven guilty?

Why didn't you just contact the contributor you thought were doing something wrong and/or the stock library in question (SS) before publicly and unheard accusing them?
« Last Edit: March 09, 2012, 03:23 by CarlssonInc. Stock Imagery Production »

Microbius

« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2012, 04:38 »
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Wow, that's pretty blatant.
I like IStock's "abusive inspiration" policy.
"It may not be illegal but we don't like to see other artists work being cannibalized" is a good attitude in a stock agency, as long as it is fairly applied.

lagereek

« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2012, 04:45 »
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Microbius is absoloutely correct!  its blatant!  and really this is what Ive been saying for years: its not the photographers fault, just trying to earn money, its the agencies, for allowing it in the first place. If youre not allowed to do it in RM, why in Micro?.
Its little wonder we have some 100 million files on line and I bet 50%, are just pure copycat work.
This however is one of the worst examples I have seen. Pugh!

I know, its impossible for agencies to police this, too time consuming, etc but the similarity in this case is incredible.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2012, 04:47 by lagereek »

wut

« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2012, 05:14 »
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Nobody likes copycats, but is it really right to appoint yourself as prosecutor, court and judge? Innocent before proven guilty?

Why didn't you just contact the contributor you thought were doing something wrong and/or the stock library in question (SS) before publicly and unheard accusing them?

If it looks like a duck, if it walks like a duck, if it kwaks like a duck... ;) I support the OP, I think such ppl should be put to shame, spatted on and lastly they should be hanged ;D (at least in the online sense, account locked, port erased, pending funds taken away and put towards inspectors looking for plagiarism)

wut

« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2012, 05:15 »
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Wow, that's pretty blatant.
I like IStock's "abusive inspiration" policy.
"It may not be illegal but we don't like to see other artists work being cannibalized" is a good attitude in a stock agency, as long as it is fairly applied.

Is it?

Microbius

« Reply #6 on: March 09, 2012, 05:30 »
0
Wow, that's pretty blatant.
I like IStock's "abusive inspiration" policy.
"It may not be illegal but we don't like to see other artists work being cannibalized" is a good attitude in a stock agency, as long as it is fairly applied.

Is it?
I've never heard anyone complain about having images deleted unfairly under the policy. Plus their house their rules.

wut

« Reply #7 on: March 09, 2012, 05:36 »
0
Wow, that's pretty blatant.
I like IStock's "abusive inspiration" policy.
"It may not be illegal but we don't like to see other artists work being cannibalized" is a good attitude in a stock agency, as long as it is fairly applied.

Is it?
I've never heard anyone complain about having images deleted unfairly under the policy. Plus their house their rules.

But is it applied at all? Surely you won't hear complaints from someone who knows he had just copied someone else's work

« Reply #8 on: March 09, 2012, 05:43 »
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Before running to the defence of the 'original' artist who's work has been copied, you would do well to search and see if that was actually an 'original idea'. It may have become a best seller but was not necessarily unique when submitted.....

Don't get me wrong, I don't like blatant copying any more than the next person but we do need to be clear about who we are defending. Is this a case of a copycat copying another copycat?

wut

« Reply #9 on: March 09, 2012, 06:11 »
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Before running to the defence of the 'original' artist who's work has been copied, you would do well to search and see if that was actually an 'original idea'. It may have become a best seller but was not necessarily unique when submitted.....

Don't get me wrong, I don't like blatant copying any more than the next person but we do need to be clear about who we are defending. Is this a case of a copycat copying another copycat?

System will never be perfect, but it's still better that some get sanctioned, instead of none. If plagiarism was actually sanctioned, than I bet most ppl wouldn't try it, at least those that have something to loose ;)

« Reply #10 on: March 09, 2012, 06:30 »
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Before running to the defence of the 'original' artist who's work has been copied, you would do well to search and see if that was actually an 'original idea'. It may have become a best seller but was not necessarily unique when submitted.....

Don't get me wrong, I don't like blatant copying any more than the next person but we do need to be clear about who we are defending. Is this a case of a copycat copying another copycat?
Fair point, but of course I checked first before posting this message. The original image (on the left by Perola) has an image ID of 92960689. The first appearance of (what I shall call) the copy image is 94961593. The SS number allocation to files is sequential, i.e the lower the number the earlier to acceptance to the library. The copy image is over 200,000 images after the original acceptance. That number would be three to four weeks (guesstimate) on current SS volume. I don't think it is feasible that if the copy image was the 'original' the photographer would have waited three weeks to post his pictures. You might suggest, maybe Perola saw the Schauer image somewhere else on another site and posted on SS first. If he did I could not find it -I checked Schauer port on RF123 and non of these copy images are posted. There is one image posted on his DT portfolio and it states the image was taken on 3 February 2012. The series of image numbers relating to 92...... on SS were uploaded the week of the 7 January 2012. Four weeks earlier which ties in with the difference in the file numbers. I'm no Inspector Morse but the dates seem to support the proposition that Perola's images were uploaded first, at least three weeks before the Marcel Schauer versions. Apart from that, how do you square the circle of absolutely identical keywords and title? I accept that appearances can be deceptive but I think this is a pretty clear cut case of plagiarism.
« Last Edit: March 09, 2012, 06:36 by Roxxstock »

« Reply #11 on: March 09, 2012, 06:32 »
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Before running to the defence of the 'original' artist who's work has been copied, you would do well to search and see if that was actually an 'original idea'. It may have become a best seller but was not necessarily unique when submitted.....

Don't get me wrong, I don't like blatant copying any more than the next person but we do need to be clear about who we are defending. Is this a case of a copycat copying another copycat?


Not exact copies but there are also these which seem to predate the examples above (ra2 studio):

http://www.shutterstock.com/pic.mhtml?id=67431202


http://www.shutterstock.com/pic-72598093/stock-photo-painted-finger-smiley-valentine-s-day-theme.html


http://depositphotos.com/5491141/stock-photo-Finger-Hug-on-Valentine039s-day-theme.html

« Reply #12 on: March 09, 2012, 07:49 »
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System will never be perfect, but it's still better that some get sanctioned, instead of none. If plagiarism was actually sanctioned, than I bet most ppl wouldn't try it, at least those that have something to loose ;)

The system will never be perfect, but no, it's NOT better that some get sanctioned, if the ones getting sanctioned are the wrong ones! I don't believe there is a microstock agency today that is going to put a lot of resources into doing anything about this. It would take too much time to try and track down who the owner of the original idea is, if it could be done at all.

Microbius

« Reply #13 on: March 09, 2012, 08:13 »
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I don't think they would be trying to prove anything, just make a reasonable judgement call, and clearly the first two are pretty much identical while the rest are just based on the same idea.
So disable the second one, after discussing it with the photographer to see what they have to say. They may not have copied the first one, they may both have copied the same third image, either way just make a judgement call based on what they have to say about it and how similar the images are.

« Reply #14 on: March 09, 2012, 08:14 »
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nobody better submit any photos of goldfish. Search on istock and you'll see the biggest example of copying in the history of microstock.

wut

« Reply #15 on: March 09, 2012, 08:18 »
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System will never be perfect, but it's still better that some get sanctioned, instead of none. If plagiarism was actually sanctioned, than I bet most ppl wouldn't try it, at least those that have something to loose ;)

The system will never be perfect, but no, it's NOT better that some get sanctioned, if the ones getting sanctioned are the wrong ones! I don't believe there is a microstock agency today that is going to put a lot of resources into doing anything about this. It would take too much time to try and track down who the owner of the original idea is, if it could be done at all.

Microbious beat me to it and gave you the reply ;)

I don't think they would be trying to prove anything, just make a reasonable judgement call, and clearly the first two are pretty much identical while the rest are just based on the same idea.
So disable the second one, after discussing it with the photographer to see what they have to say. They may not have copied the first one, they may both have copied the same third image, either way just make a judgement call based on what they have to say about it and how similar the images are.

wut

« Reply #16 on: March 09, 2012, 08:19 »
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nobody better submit any photos of goldfish. Search on istock and you'll see the biggest example of copying in the history of microstock.

No one in his right mind would shoot something so overdone anyway ;) ;D


ShadySue

« Reply #17 on: March 09, 2012, 09:14 »
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nobody better submit any photos of goldfish. Search on istock and you'll see the biggest example of copying in the history of microstock.

No one in his right mind would shoot something so overdone anyway ;) ;D
YMBJ: two uploaded in autumn 2011 have already flamed.

« Reply #18 on: March 09, 2012, 09:36 »
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nobody better submit any photos of goldfish. Search on istock and you'll see the biggest example of copying in the history of microstock.

An tehere are millions oh photos of people too. Subject is irrelevant, is perfectly possible generating ypour own concept with goldfish.

wut

« Reply #19 on: March 09, 2012, 10:41 »
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nobody better submit any photos of goldfish. Search on istock and you'll see the biggest example of copying in the history of microstock.

No one in his right mind would shoot something so overdone anyway ;) ;D
YMBJ: two uploaded in autumn 2011 have already flamed.

Than there's something wrong with those buyers ;D ;)

« Reply #20 on: March 09, 2012, 10:45 »
0
Wow, that's pretty blatant.
I like IStock's "abusive inspiration" policy.
"It may not be illegal but we don't like to see other artists work being cannibalized" is a good attitude in a stock agency, as long as it is fairly applied.

Is it?
I've never heard anyone complain about having images deleted unfairly under the policy. Plus their house their rules.

I try not to play the abusive inspiration card unless it's blatant. But there have been a few times it was really obvious and iStock has quickly removed the copy-cat work. I'm happy the policy is in place.

wut

« Reply #21 on: March 09, 2012, 11:05 »
0
Wow, that's pretty blatant.
I like IStock's "abusive inspiration" policy.
"It may not be illegal but we don't like to see other artists work being cannibalized" is a good attitude in a stock agency, as long as it is fairly applied.

Is it?
I've never heard anyone complain about having images deleted unfairly under the policy. Plus their house their rules.

I try not to play the abusive inspiration card unless it's blatant. But there have been a few times it was really obvious and iStock has quickly removed the copy-cat work. I'm happy the policy is in place.

Thumbs up for that, I hope other agencies will copy the goods business practices from IS as well. That's what I call protecting the contributors and that's what an agency should do, that's what they're payed for

« Reply #22 on: March 09, 2012, 12:13 »
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This is what you call a "derivative work". I've had some of my shots blatantly "copied" into being a vector. Doesn't matter in the end. I beat them to the market and mine is waaay more profitable because of that.

Noodles

« Reply #23 on: March 09, 2012, 20:20 »
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One area I'm never sure about is when someone has copied but they have attempted to make their version better. I can't find a good example right now but here is something along those lines.

Original  http://www.istockphoto.com/stock-illustration-9933801-grungeamerican-flag-vector.php?st=b2cd377

Copy  http://www.istockphoto.com/stock-illustration-19400669-american-flag-grunge.php?st=b2cd377

umm, looking again this one might be too close for comfort

« Reply #24 on: March 09, 2012, 20:25 »
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Were all assuming they didn't come up with these designs on their own... which is perfectly possible.


 

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