Is someone using your pictures or artwork without your consent? Plagiarism is occurring nowadays on a scale never seen or anticipated before. This is largely due to the mushrooming growth of websites with the Internet becoming more and more accessible in the developing countries. As content managers join in the bandwagon to mint money through content marketing, they often forego the originality and resort to unethical and illegal methods. Using someone’s artwork or images is a public offense and comes under copyright infringement law in the USA. However, it can also be reported to the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), if the plagiarised content is being sold online.
The penalty for selling copyright work (without the owner’s explicit permission) can be from 3 months to 2 years, depending on the severity of the crime. At the same time, the accused would be liable to pay a fine that ranges from $750 to $300,000.
By comparing both the images, you will be able to find if the other image is a xerox copy of your image or a slightly doctored one. If it is the latter case, you should email the offender and ask them to remove it at once. You can also fill out this form at DMCA to remove all content that matches your work from websites across the globe.
Rogue and non professional e-commerce stores quite often scrap pictures and data from most popular e-commerce stores. This helps them, according to their philosophy, avoid costs of hiring a professional photographer as well as a graphics designer to get all the stuff photographed and posted online. This is however, an unfair practice of the highest level. In this case, the e-commerce site which has been wronged, their web admins can simply check all the images they suspect for any wrongdoing at Image Champ Online.
Another handy trick that can help e-commerce sites guard their images in the future is to add watermarks to every single images, as it renders them absolutely useless for any plagiarist out there on the web.