… I ran across this yesterday courtesy of the Wisenhiemer cartoonist’s forum:
That’s right. This genius actually emailed the copyright owner of images he had stolen off said owner’s website, (using hotlinks and stealing his bandwidth no less) and threatened to SUE HIM unless he puts the images back up immediately. You can see more email fun and read the whole story here.
Honestly, I hope this is just an urban legend and the link above is a gag. Yes, there really are people that ignorant and uneducated about the basics of copyright operating businesses out there, but more shocking is the example of the unbelievable sense of ENTITLEMENT that people have over the content on the internet. It’s out there, it’s accessible… therefore it must be FREE. You would think it would be common sense that images on another person’s website are not your images, and you can’t just use them with impunity. Yet many people do because they can. The scary thing is that people think so little of it, and it doesn’t occur to them it is stealing.
The eventual resolution to this was the person who threatened legal action if the images he was stealing were not replaced so he could continue to infringe on the owner’s copyright did consult his lawyer, who promptly pointed out his mistake. According to the story I linked to above, the offender apologized to the copyright owner but then simply went out and found new images to infringe upon for his website.
All you can do is shake your head and lament the decline of civilization as we know it.
UPDATE- My pal Ed Steckley tells me this is a gag that has made the rounds in the last week or so just to get people worked up. I suspected it might be but then again I’ve seen some stupid things in my time.