Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Blatant Theft and a NEW Group

Many by now would have realised I am a HUGE fan of Here Comes Trouble, not just the store itself but also both designers behind it...Babyboo Glitterbuck and Bailey MacKenzie.

Last night it dawned on me that I hadnt heard a peep out of Boo in a while and I IM"d her to be told that she was the latest victim of Content Theft. Anyone that knows HCT hair would spot this a mile away, especialy these three styles shown in the picture, as they were very unique for the time she released them and still hold true now with the texture change pieces that are intermingled with the hair.

Unfortunatly though it went further than just HCT's content, much further as you can see in the pictures.

What I found very interesting, is that all the content is of a particular theme/lifestyle so to speak, being very Urban Neko, which when I was at the meeting later that night (more about that soon) I had to giggle when some of the creators were passed the IP rights posters and didnt know who any of the designers on them were *giggles again* - sorry that is funny.

It made me think though, are thieves getting smarter? on this side of the Fashion Fence we are very very aware of who makes what, and we are all die hard shoppers, so we see pretty fast when someone steals. But what about all the other fences? this whole genre was copied, ok not all but seriously its insane how many stores were.
The thing is too, those themes stay amongst each other, they shop from like minded stores etc, they have their favourites and stick to those, so does that leave them more exposed to theft?.

If Nekos only shop at Neko Sims/Stores and dont really hop all over the grid like 'fashionistas' do, then the potential of seeing another store selling their fav items is less, and have thieves like this one caught on to that fact?.

Regardless of how or why, the facts are that this person has taken dozens of items and replicated them and is selling them in her two locations.

One of the designers wrote a notecard about what took place yesterday so I am going to paste that here.

So here is the whole story from 5:30 am slt time till late at 10:30 pm slt:

When I had logged on yesterday morning I had received a message and a texture explaining that my mice boots had been spotted at a shop. I quickly searched the shop name from the texture and arrived to find countless amounts of ripped items surrounding the walls.

There wasn't one thing in that store I think, that the persons in question had originally made on their own. I proceeded to IM Colemarie and Akasha to help spread the news and tell them items from many stores had been ripped.

I then IMed owner of Electric Kitty once I spotted his belt, along with Philo of Hybrid. After that I noticed the owner of the venders was standing right in the shop, so I IMed her to tell her that I would be filing a DMCA report about this, and I got no response.

Once Akasha showed up a few others started to be tped in and a few others and so on. I began to compile info and pictures, posting the original pictures on Flickr of my boots and belt that had been stolen.
From there talk about the store and identifying the items went on with people IMing the owners of the other ripped items that were present in the store. After about an hour and a half I would say I began to type and file my DMCAs and soon then after logged.

When I returned later in the day about 3:00 pm slt, I had messages from people so I soon joined others that had been standing at the ripped store katsuo Designs.
I was greeted with owners from HCT, Electric Kitty, Curious Kitty, Catnip, and many more. There was also two mentors of sl there trying to give stern advice on how the now in swing protest should go.

After a while maybe 45 minutes into this, someone had contacted one of the owners, Shiranda Milev, and was trying to negotiate a deal so that the venders could be removed without harm and hassle.
Everyone except Akasha, Aemshin, and I were asked to leave the store so we could delegate with the owner and now her "bot" and a few friends on why they should take down their venders.
After about 30 minutes of trying to prove that the items in question were ripped and should be removed, we had decided to go ahead and stop talking with them for the reasons of: they claimed that since the items had, had changes done to them, it stated that they were original and that they were not going to be taking them down.

Akasha and Aemshin left the store while I stayed and decided that a rally needed to be done in order for this to be stopped and done quickly.
I wrote a notecard down with the LM included of the store and asked that anyone and everyone please join me in a rally at 7pm slt to stop this act of theft. I got quick responses and many people called and notified many groups in an effort to take down the store.
Within the hour of me passing notecards and IMs, People had begun to start showing up and supporting the cause. I quickly stated that no greifing was nesessary and that the best way would be to mass report the store.

About 15 minutes after I think 50 people had arrived, the sim crashed. We all compiled back not in the same numbers but at least 25 + people and began to report again. This is when the "bot from earlier"(bots name: Group2U Auro) came into the store along with a Tazzy Runo and began to threaten and yell at everyone there.
After about 5 minutes in Tazzy yelled that she removed the venders, which only pertained to some of the items ripped, and that we all had 10 seconds to leave, as to which we didn't seeing as this was a peaceful protest and we were doing no harm in being there. 20 minutes I'm guessing later through all my IMs I had going, I hear someone say that she had started to eject people and soon after I was ejected to the near by parcel.

Soon after we realized that the land had been set to the store group so we all joined in her group and preceded to organize our selfs back in the store again, taking snapshots and continuing with the reports. By this time people had entered the group chat of the store and were trying to warn the people that the items this store was selling was ripped and stolen.

Conversations continued while I was in IMs with the owner of HCT, Babyboo. She had offered her sim to us for a meeting spot to discuss this issue at hand. I soon informed the party that at this time had actually been banned and were on the near by parcel again that a meeting would be a great idea and so we all comprised to the sim at that point.

Cyia Kanami
Owner of Blood Lust Designs

Now from the Meeting a Group was formed called Designers and Creators Coalition, if you wish to be added to the Group please contact Cyia Kanami, Akasha Wachmann, Destany Laval or Nigma Sterling. Also a Forum to keep up to date is HERE

There have been some incredible ideas proposed to help with this matter, not just regarding this one incident of theft but ways to band together to support and help in the future and potentialy make it very hard to do again.

We know that there are other Groups out there already formed and would love to hear from the officers of those Groups about combining some meetings and ideas, if you know of any Groups or are in any please leave a comment of contact one of the four people mentioned as they are all officers of the Group.

If any of the ideas I heard last night come into play, this is going to drasticaly change many things we are used to for the better, I hope that many of you either join this group or pass on the info to others with similar interests.

Also Boo had this info of something that looks very interesting happening this Sunday 16th March, you apparently have to register to attend though. www.life20.net

EBEN MOGLEN JOINS IPPI PANEL AT LIFE 2.0 On Sunday, March 16, at 4 PM PST, Life 2.0's IPPI (Intellectual Property, Privacy and Identity) panel will join for a rousing discussion of Opensource, IP and Privacy in Virtual Worlds with guest Eben Moglen, Director, Chair and Chief Counsel of the Software Freedom Law Center. Moglen is a pioneer of the opensource movement, former general counsel for the Free Software Foundation, and one of the architects of version 3 of the GNU GPL.The panel (still growing!) will be moderated by Tish Shute (Tara5 Oh), who blogs on virtual worlds at http://www.ugotrade.com/

xoxo Sasy xoxo


Rissa Maidstone said...

Hi all, the actual link to register for the Life 2.0 conference is at www.life20.net not Tish Shute's Ugotrade website. The panel should be very informative and there will be an opportunity to ask questions. If you have questions, feel free to contact me: Rissa Maidstone

Sasy Scarborough said...

hi Rissa thank you, I added the register link to the part that says you have to register, the part down the bottom said she blogs there so i left that as is, this event looks very interesting.

xoxo Sasy xoxo

Arianna Psaltery said...

SO glad you spotted this. Now we know where NOT to shop :)