Copyright Concerns

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Copyright Concerns

by Rose » Wed Mar 11, 2009 3:10 pm

Hello ladies I am putting this up in our SAL as today I had to edit a couple of posts due to a problem that I don't like to see become a trend.

I am not being mean but I am being cautious.

The situation that had me concerned was that in the photo the actual pattern was prominenantly displayed in the picture. In at least on of these photo's you could easily copy the stitches. Although it was not the entire pattern it was a boarder design and if some one was going to be unscrupulous they could copy this and use it. Some designer would be very up-set if they found the the theft was helped along by our site.

I know we are all very careful with copyright but others are not. So I ask all of you to please do not post patterns in part or full. It just could cause us to be held responsible for copyright infringement.

Sorry I have to do this but we have to be careful. Thanks
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by Mabel Figworthy » Wed Mar 11, 2009 4:19 pm

Thanks for flagging this up Rose, it's good to kep on our toes!
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by ~threadbear~ » Wed Mar 11, 2009 5:12 pm

It's good to have the reminder in here as any of us could slip up without meaning to.
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by Raven » Tue Aug 17, 2010 12:54 pm

I wanted to add a bit of information about copyright concerns to this topic. I hope this is alright.

Some people believe that copyright infringement has little to no impact on the needlework industry. This is a response I got regarding a blog post I wrote about copyright infringement, so I went ahead and compiled some data to show that it is a major problem. Can I post that data here?

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Re: Copyright Concerns

by Rose » Tue Aug 17, 2010 3:59 pm

Yes of course it is good to have this information.
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by Raven » Mon Aug 23, 2010 1:07 pm

Thank you Rose. I wanted to check before posting and I appreciate you taking the time to respond. :)

This essay was prompted by responses I got when I put a link to a blog post from MyMark designs. That blog post showed how much money 1 person has cost the needlework industry with a single My Mark designs chart, and how much it would be if there were 50 people just like the first. The responses I received were that this was made up to cover-up a decline of interest in needlework, and that the figure Monique posted could not possibly be accurate, that it was a lie designed to stir up the emotions of stitchers over a small problem. To answer these statements I went to a single blog and compiled some information. Here are the results (this is LONG)

An Honest Look At The Size Of The Copyright Problem
© M. Hull August 4, 2010

For the last 3 days, I have been making a list so I can do some math as an example of the scope of the copyright infringement problem. This is in response to the opinions I have been told (via email etc.) that this is blown out of proportion, exaggerated, or in some manner made-up to hide a loss of interest in the needlework industry as a whole.

I went through the 2009 posts for the site located at http://acspontocruz.blogspot.com to give a clearer picture of just how large copyright infringement has become and to show that it is not being exaggerated as some would like to believe it is.

I made a list (available as a word document upon email request) of every entry from Feb 7, 2009 to Dec 30, 2009, that counted the number of charts, or magazine pages full of charts posted on those dates. I would continue for 2010 but this has already taken me enough time (3 days) and I think it makes my point quite nicely the way it is.

On the pages where entire pages of magazines, leaflets etc were posted I counted the pages rather than the individual motifs found on each page when those pages had more than 4 motifs to the page. Otherwise I counted individual charts. I noted the copyright holders if I recognized them, or the copyright statement was part of the scan (as it is on many of the scans posted)

Here are some facts about that site:

This site has 213 followers as of 10:14AM (Central US Time) Aug. 4, 2010.

The site counter shows over 900,000 hits.

It links to 36 other blogs on its front page, left-side column. Of those 36 links: 20 have copyrighted cross stitch charts posted for free download within the first two pages of their blog. 2 have knitting and crocheting patterns, including full copies of magazines (copyrighted) available for download (not counted in those 20) and 1 needs to be logged into before it can be read (also not counted in those 20).

So 20 out of 36, that is over 50% of her links also stealing copyrighted charts. So right there you have 21 blogs (counting the original) and 21 separate people providing cross stitch charts for illegal download. The 50 people that MyMark Designs used as a figure isn’t looking so “made-up” now.

The site owner links to a second blog (on the right side of blog, not in list of 36 links) that she runs which also lists copyrighted charts for download. So this one person has 2 blogs providing stolen copyrighted charts.

Of the 5 commenter’s whose blogs I loaded, 4 also provide copyrighted charts for free download. Most comments are “Anonymous”. So that brings us up to 25 separate people providing charts, all associated with this first site in one way or another.

Total charts on offer during that time: 2242

Following copyright Holders that I recognized: DMC, Anchor, Rico Designs, Beatrix Potter, Disney, EMS (31 of her animal baby charts are on this blog), Brittercup Designs, Leisure Arts, Cross Stitch Card Shop (UK Magazine), Cross Stitch Crazy (UK Magazine), a Russian Magazine and a Spanish Magazine, Hello Kitty, Garfield (paws, Inc), Vervaco, Lanarte, and others.

Now let’s do some math. For the sake of argument, and to allow for errors I will use the following numbers for my math:

Instead of all 213 followers, I will assume that only half (213 divide by 2 = 106.5) or 106 people downloaded charts.

Also to allow for not every chart appealing to every stitcher, I will use only half of the available charts for the year 2009. 2242 divide by 2 = 1121

I will use an average of $5.00 (USD) per chart because magazines cost about that much, most of the charts I recognized were at least 10.00 (or more) each so we’ll use a slightly smaller number to allow for variations.
106 people downloaded 1121 charts each: total 118,826 charts downloaded in 1 year

118,826 times $5.00 each equals $594,130.00 dollars lost to the needlework industry if they were only downloaded by those 106 people and only downloaded once in the entire year.

This is just 1 site, using half of the followers and half of the charts available for the year 2009. My guess is that the actual figures lost (if they could be accurately calculated) would be a lot higher because I doubt that only half the followers downloaded these charts and I doubt only half of them were downloaded.

I am quite sure many people who are not listed as followers also downloaded charts without making their presence known via following or commenting.

Since those pages are all still visible, and all 2242 of the charts are still available, people are still downloading them even though they were posted a year ago. Due to these unknowns there really is no way of figuring out the exact amount of money lost, but even the conservative estimate I have created is far too much money.

Since 1 person with just one site can cost this much to the needlework industry, it is not exaggerated that 50 people can cause over 800,000 dollars to be lost on a single $7.00 chart.

Remember this one person also links to a second blog she offers additional charts on, plus 20 more people’s blogs that also offer charts. That’s 20 more people off this single site, plus the 5 commenter I loaded making a total of 25 additional blogs and people with stolen charts. If you follow the links on all 25 of those sites, you’ll find even more people providing even more copyrighted charts.

As you can see this is not being exaggerated, made up, or in any other manner lied about in order to cover up a loss of interest in the needlework industry. This is an actual, major problem that costs the needlework industry a lot of money per year.

I wish that I could just turn away and justify it to myself as being exaggerated, made up, or a lie to cover-up a loss of interest in the needlework industry, but I can’t because I have seen it for myself. What I have given here truly is a SMALL sample of the sites that are available out there.

There are sites out there that offer charts and magazines literally within a few hours of them first being published. Those sites have thousands of charts and magazines available for download with thousands of users downloading daily. Some of those sites even require the users to PAY for the privilege of uploading and downloading pirated charts and NONE of that money goes to the needlework industry, it goes to the site owner who provides the space for the pirated charts to be accessed.

Copyright infringement is a major problem and the figures I have provided here, based solely on 1 site, are not exaggerated. In fact, the numbers are conservative and in actuality are probably much higher.

You can continue to believe that the problem is not this large if you wish, but you can no longer believe that the problem does not exist at all. It does.
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by Fljotsdale » Fri Oct 08, 2010 4:13 pm

Great piece of research Raven! Breach of copyright really annoys me. It's outright stealing of the work of someone else, - not only of their work but also of their income. It's totally inexcusable, imo.

My 'Fljotsdale Dragon' which Mr Xstitch charted for me is a case in point - I tried very hard to find the publisher of the book so that I could ask permission to use the sleeve cover pic, but they are out of business and I couldn't get a response from the publisher who took them over. They ignored e-mails, and phone calls were not answered, so I think they may be out of business as well... I don't know what else to do. I figure just using it for myself is probably ok in the circumstances (I DID try hard!) - and after all Mr Xstitch charted it, specifically for me, so the chart copyright belongs to him, not the book publisher - but all the same I worry about it. I want permission to use it and would be perfectly willing to pay the copyright owner, if only I could find out who they are!
If anyone has any ideas about how I could identify a current publisher who owns the copyright to the book I would be VERY happy!
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by Bontanique » Thu Oct 14, 2010 12:07 pm

It annoys me to see someone sell etc a design that is copyrighted when there are so many designs out there that are not. Certain magazines allow you to stitch and sell work off their patterns for charity uses. My concern is that should people become too greedy then these kind designers that allow their designs to be sittched for charity may withdraw that right. I certainly know that this would affect the charities I stitch for as well as the group I provide charts from the magazines to so that they can stitch for charity too.
 
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by Raven » Sat Dec 11, 2010 10:56 pm

Fljotsdale wrote:Great piece of research Raven! Breach of copyright really annoys me. It's outright stealing of the work of someone else, - not only of their work but also of their income. It's totally inexcusable, imo.
If anyone has any ideas about how I could identify a current publisher who owns the copyright to the book I would be VERY happy!


Thank you! I am glad you found the research helpful. Similar research is why I have not been around on boards much, that came after 8 weeks stuck in bed every day pending new radio frequency procedures. I was in bed for a total of 3 months. When I got out of bed I was working on research of copyright infringements on a posting board (NOT THIS ONE!) to turn the information over to a lawyer from TNNA in the hopes of prosecuting the site host, site owner, and every identified user (which we have ID'd many of them). I was supposed to have this database done by the end of November, but I just didn't make it there are too many charts. The numbers are astronomical! LHN and CCN are losing thousands a month, and now so is HAED. The section of the site I am currently listing has over 200 HAED in the first 20 pages! THis depressed me, specially when the files are downloaded over 40 and 50 times EACH. (do the math, 21.00 chart..downloaded 50 times..$1050.00 loss) It's insane.

Anyway, if the book you used has been reprinted you will find the current copyright holder. Look for the book on amazon.com or another online book source to see if a new version of it was released. Otherwise, you may be able to find the artist's name as they probably hold the copyright to the image as it was used in the book. If the artist's name is given, search for them online and email them directly, rather than the book publisher. To find the artist, sometimes in small print either on inside front cover or inside back cover (specially if it contains a dust jacket) will often be the place where you can find the artist's name.

Another option, email me the name and author of the book and I'll see what I can do. I know many of the artists that draw dragons (not personally, just that I recognize the work) and may be able to help or find someone who can.

@Bontanique: I agree. The numbers of people stealing charts can and will hurt every stitcher if we can't slow it down.

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Re: Copyright Concerns

by Mystonique » Mon Dec 13, 2010 3:11 am

As a solicitor I love to see people taking their obligations to others seriously and doing their best to keep everything fair for everyone =}
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by KellyAnne » Wed Jan 05, 2011 6:37 am

Just have to throw my two cents in as well....

I work in the legal department of a trade organization. One of our top priorities is protecting against copyright infringement. It is so refreshing to see this side of the coin. To see that people do care about the artists. We so often hear the negative as we battle against copyright infringement. So thank you very much to everyone helping us in the battle!!

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Re: Copyright Concerns

by meerkat » Tue May 17, 2011 5:00 pm

It certainly does not hurt for us to all be reminded about copyright law, from time to time. it must be so frustrating and demoralising to find one's own work being pirated intentionally or not.
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by sajehill » Sun Aug 21, 2011 2:30 pm

I'm relatively new here (joined a week or two ago after returning to cross stitching after a 7 year self-imposed exile). I didn't realize this topic hadn't been commented on since May but I wanted to add my 2 cents to it anyway.

Stealing is stealing. It's just that simple. I have recently seen 2 examples of copyright infringement. One was a doll pattern & the other was a counted cross stitch chart. I can't actually say for sure that these 2 designs were copyrighted but again, stealing is stealing.

A blogger posted a photo of a doll she had "just designed." She was not selling the pattern, nor was she making these dolls available for purchase, but it was so much like a doll pattern I had just made which had been featured in a popular magazine. I thought "Doesn't this person think anyone else looks at this magazine???" She changed the style of the dress but otherwise the doll was exactly the same.

Another blogger sells counted cross stitch charts. I will call her Designer A. I purchased a chart from her a while back. These are "her designs." I put that in quotes because I was browsing through Etsy one day & saw what was almost the exact same chart for sale by another "designer." I will call her Designer B. There were slight differences in Designer B's chart when compared to Designer A's. The shape of the finished item was square rather than rectangular. The design included a date which was different than the date Designer A chose. The shape of the vegetables in the center of the design were slightly different but were otherwise the same vegetables & the same number. Designer A & I had previously discussed copyright issues & her stance was that "so many things look so similar, how can you really tell if someone is copying something or not." When I saw Designer B's chart, I sent Designer A a link to it thinking she would be rather upset that this person's design was way too much like her's to be a coincidence. However, when she responded to my email she did not even address the issue. When I wrote back I again made mention of how odd it was that this person seemed to have copied her design. Again she did not address the issue. This seems rather strange to me.

I suppose some people don't think much of themselves or their own abilities & so they have to ride the coat tails of others? Perhaps they want the praise & attention they get from offering designs that they can pass off as their own creativity without most people ever realizing that something almost exactly like it came before? I don't know but the whole practice sickens me : (

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Re: Copyright Concerns

by LadyS » Sun Aug 21, 2011 4:55 pm

When I got married I moved to Puerto Rico (from Brasil) and the same month my parents were selling our house and moving cross country to their farm and she was also downsizing from a huge house to a smaller farm house (5 to 3 bedrooms, and a lot less square footage) and sold her patchwork fabrics, and many many sewing supplies apart from throwing away cross stitch and crochet magazines, so I did scan several magazines and charts so I could take with me on my move (same move I had to get rid of 1/3 of my thread stash). That's not infringement of copyright, is it? I hope not.

But my main question is on kits. Once you use the kit are you allowed to stitch the pattern again or pass along the chart? Or are kit's chart for exclusive use with the kit?
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by Mabel Figworthy » Sun Aug 21, 2011 6:22 pm

As far as I understand it with charts, the rule is that there should not be more than one copy in existence at any time of a chart you've bought, except for a working copy for yourself. However, you can pass on a lend a chart. What you cannot do is make a copy of a chart for someone else while keeping the original, or giving the original to someone else while keeping a copy.

Strictly speaking that also means you cannot scan charts from magazines if the magazine is also in existence. I'm not sure what the rules are if you own the magazine, scan the charts and then destroy the magazines (which someone might want to do if they haven't got room to store the physical magazines.

It also means that if you have a chart in digital form, you can print it for yourself to work from, but you cannot print another copy for someone else, nor can you copy the digitel file for someone else.

As for passing on digital charts (without keeping a copy yourself) rather than physical paper charts, I understand that HAED allow physical charts (i.e. paper charts bought from them) to be sold or passed on once you're done with them, but not digital charts (presumably because they are so lamentably easy to copy). I personally haven't addressed that issue explicitly; I think I'd be OK with it if someone bought one of my charts (which are digital chart packs) then passed it on when they were done with it, as I can't see much difference with the physical chart -- always on condition of course that they do not keep a copy for themselves.

Charts from kits, as far as I know, you can stitch as often as you like, although you cannot put them into mass production, e.g. making lots and lots of pincushions from the chart in a kit and selling them.

Hope that helps -- if I got anything wrong I'm sure other members will add/correct!
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by Rose » Mon Aug 22, 2011 4:27 am

Each Kit has it's own rules and they are printed on the kit in the information section of the charts. Disney is quite explicit with how many times you can use the chart from their kits. Other designers have their own ideas.
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by Patchwork Rabbit » Mon Sep 19, 2011 8:19 am

What about out of print charts? I'm guessing the rule is the same?
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by Rose » Mon Sep 19, 2011 4:25 pm

Yes the rule still apply even if the pattern has been taken out of circulation the designer still holds the copyright and you can not pass on copies.
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by rachdun » Thu Dec 22, 2011 4:13 pm

I think this is a grey area. It seems to me that copyright infringement is not limited just to the charts. If I was to create a chart and sell it using a photo of an artist that I had taken during a concert for example, would I still be infringing copyright because I hadn't asked the artist's permission to do this even though the photo was taken by me?
 
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Re: Copyright Concerns

by Rose » Thu Dec 22, 2011 4:19 pm

The photo is yours but most concerts say right at the entrance that no cameras are alowed so I would say that it would be illegal to sell a picture or a chart from your personal pictures. Oh course this is as you say a very grey area. But I think the artist that you are photographing would have to give permission for the picture to be used as a profit making item.
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