Someone ripping off our website

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  • Someone ripping off our website
  • johndoh
    Member

    Just designed and built a new website from the ground up (at a rather large expense) in the summer of 2013 and we were fortunate that it featured on several ‘best of web’ sites.

    Since then we have found that it has been directly copied once and someone claimed to have designed it – both times we successfully got the sites/references removed.

    However, we have just found out that a UAE-based design agency have copied it directly (so much so that ‘their’ map was a Google map to our office) – the design, images and the entire of our code was simply copied. We contacted their web host with a DCMA request and they took the site down straight away. Unfortunately it has since re-appeared (as a screenshot only, nonetheless it is our site) so they are clearly ignoring requests and circumventing other actions. I can only assume they have moved hosts or are hosting it internally (Whois still says it is the old host but that can’t be the case if they had taken the site down once).

    Google won’t get involved as they say Copyright issues aren’t covered in their policy – they don’t moderate that sort of claim.

    Any ideas…

    Premier Icon wwaswas
    Subscriber

    If the site is now image only then it’s not really ‘doing’ anything is it?

    Maybe contact any real customers they have listed on their site and point out that the UAE co are just ripping off other peoples designs rather than doing original work and that you’ve asked them to stop but they’ve just continued?

    I’d avoid putting any direct links to the rip off site online as it’ll just help their google rank…

    b r
    Member

    Any ideas…

    Just move on. It’s not worth wasting any time/ideas/skill – use that for your next success.

    johndoh
    Member

    If the site is now image only then it’s not really ‘doing’ anything is it?

    No, but I am sure they are still working on it – the homepage is changing a bit – so I am trying to head it off before another fully functional site appears.

    Premier Icon geoffj
    Subscriber

    Just move on. It’s not worth wasting any time/ideas/skill – use that for your next success.

    This ^^

    What will you gain by pursuing it?

    Premier Icon Pook
    Subscriber

    Can we see it?

    bensales
    Member

    Are they actually taking any content from your site, such as images?

    I’d be tempted to replace those images with something else entirely (what is up to you 🙂 ) and put the original content in a new place and modify your site accordingly.

    Hours of fun could be had with stylesheets, images, etc if they’re directly linking to it.

    On the other hand, if they’ve scraped it and are using your source etc locally, then there’s not a whole heap you can do unless you’re prepared to sue someone in a different country for breach of copyright.

    Premier Icon AlexSimon
    Subscriber

    Does this copy threaten your business in any way?
    i.e.
    Will it take traffic from your site?
    Damage your reputation?
    Confuse customers?

    If so, then I think you have to take action. Hosts will normally react.

    If not and it’s just annoying, then perhaps it’s better left as mentioned above.

    konabunny
    Member

    There is a popbitch-type gossip website for Dubai media people. Easiest might be to humiliate them by giving tem the story. Might be a bit of a downer tho.

    johndoh
    Member

    Are they actually taking any content from your site, such as images?

    They were but after their hosts intervened at our request, they have modified – I will have to watch what they are doing.

    Konabunny – thanks – your suggestion sounds good.

    mogrim
    Member

    My brother works in media in Dubai, send me a mail and I’ll ask him. And no: he doesn’t do web design. Or steal it AFAIK 🙂

    johndoh
    Member

    Ahh that sounds promising too Mogrim – we have just decided to see what happens in the next week (ie, if they have just put the holding image up whilst they develop/steal a new website).

    mogrim
    Member

    Ahh that sounds promising too Mogrim – we have just decided to see what happens in the next week (ie, if they have just put the holding image up whilst they develop/steal a new website).

    No problem, if you do want me to ask just send me the details…

    butcher
    Member

    Have you contacted the company that built it? It’s them that I would be threatening with legal action. Also the company it is for – are they even aware?

    I’m guessing you have been through this stuff already though.

    Premier Icon grizedaleforest
    Subscriber

    Contact the IPO (http://www.ipo.gov.uk/) for advice on enforcing copyright overseas.

    johndoh
    Member

    Have you contacted the company that built it? It’s them that I would be threatening with legal action. Also the company it is for – are they even aware?

    I’m guessing you have been through this stuff already though.
    The business is a creative business and claimed to have done it themselves.

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