Recently there’s been a load of people having their artwork stolen. While imitation is the fondest form of flattery, having your artwork stolen sucks balls. You might feel frustrated and confused not knowing what options are available to you but in the world of interweb… you have loads of options my friends. Loads. Mwahaha!
Here’re the steps to handling up on someone who stole your shiz. Alternatively, you can watch my video on what to do if someone steals your artwork which I also included below young grasshopper.
Make Sure Your Art is Really Stolen
In order for your art to be considered stolen it must be replicated exactly. A bad reproduction trying to pass it off as their own idea also passes as stolen art. What doesn’t pass? An altered creation. If it was only used as inspiration partially or is a small part of a bigger work which does not include your other works completely. I’m confusing myself now but I’m sure you get the idea of what’s considered stolen artwork.
Make Sure You Document Your Stolen Art
Document the time your art surfaced the internet to bless the web and when the copy-cat loser lazily began to pass your art as theirs. Screenshots also work wonders in this situation. If they’ve been selling your art get proof of that as well. If possible find out how much they’ve sold of your stolen artwork.
Decide Between Legal Action or More Personal
Ideally, you’ll want to take legal action if the person has profited or gained fame from your stolen artwork. If neither of these pertain to your circumstance, then you’ll go the more personal route which will be cheaper and less of a hassle.
Gather up your proof and documentation and head to an attorney’s office. If they’ve been profiting off your work or acquire fame for using your work they’ll be liable for paying you back plus some for their benefits in using your artwork.
Give You Credit or Remove Your Artwork
If they haven’t gained much from the use of your work or you don’t care to take the legal route, then you can have them remove your artwork or give you credit for it. You can always contact them directly for the request to give you credit.
To have your work removed initially you’ll want to contact them. If they don’t budge you can then contact them with a cease and desist. So, that doesn’t budge them either? You can then go to whomever is hosting the platform where your content is (website host, social media host, etc) and report them. This might take a few days but most platforms take content theft seriously.
By this point one of these steps should have helped with your content theft issues.