ACID CEO, Dids Macdonald, has written an open letter to Hekaytnoon.com, which can be viewed here.
Em Royston, Designer, Creator and Owner of Chasing Threads says in her latest blog, “Coping with Copycats – It’s probably every designer’s biggest fear… Being sent a link to a product that looks oh so very familiar but is just all wrong. The screen shows you a design you’ve looked at a million times, but there are slight differences, and you know something is not right:
Someone has stolen your idea, replicated it, and is passing it off as their own.
Unfortunately this exact thing has happened to me this week. And it isn’t just for one of my products, but for five of them (yes 5!!) of my original designs have been copied and are being sold and marketed under a different brand. My Stitchable Passport Covers, Travel Wallets, Luggage Tags, Tote Bags and Jewellery Wraps – all almost identically replicated, but with text translated into Arabic and logos changed. In the same colours, with the same details, the same aeroplane thread-board, the same type of packaging, photography style, I could go on and on.
Staring numbly at this screen I did what all Company Directors would do in this case: swore a lot, had a little cry, drunk a lot of wine, and asked……” Read the full blog here.
Many members will remember we featured Em Royston of Chasing Threads in a recent ACID member focus here. No stranger to her innovative designs being ripped off, we also shared information about a successful take down of a knock off design on Etsy here. But Em’s troubles are not over and it makes sad reading to hear her latest debacle.
Dids Macdonald, OBE., CEO of Anti Copying in Design said, “It would appear that from the original and alleged copy images there is absolutely no dispute about the similarities, and the company needs to be challenged. I urge everyone to spread the word and ask the design community their opinion on whether Em’s designs have been replicated. She has hard evidence in the form of registered designs and signed and dated evidence (evidence to be established). With Em’s permission, I will also be personally writing an open letter to the offending company.”
Dids has since heard from Em and she says, “Since writing my blog I have contacted the company via email and IG Direct Message (the content is pasted at the bottom of this email for reference), these messages have been ignored since 23rd September. The company have also deleted comments on Instagram which point out the similarities with @chasing_threads_ – and have blocked any users (myself, friends, and family) that have commented in this way.”
What can you do to help? Share Em’s compelling blog with the rest of the design community and let’s hope we can shame this company in stopping these blatant look alikes. Together, as a united voice we can make a stance about using other’s designs without permission.
This discovery happened to Em last week. “I do hope to be able to fight this and stop my intellectual property being abused. The next step will be to contact the company and see if they will be cooperative. I will keep sharing more on my Instagram and ACID and I ask all to follow.”