Update: k4 Technology have removed the article and banned the “author”.
Update: Removed whois details; those who know how can check for themselves if interested.
As some of you may remember, I won a Welland MediaBank ME-747AP at an IGDA social night last October. I wrote a moderately detailed review with heaps of pictures. It rates very well in Google searches for the device.
This morning I decided to have a quick look online to see if Welland have released a new firmware (to fix some text rendering issues) and I came across this site with an eerily familar image:
That’s exactly the photo I took of the MediaBank box for my review. I kept reading… this is my review! These bastards ripped off my review! I figured that it was probably a splog, created by ripping RSS feed from various sites and presenting them as their own. However, I don’t expose full-content RSS feeds, only summaries.
Their entire article is a blatant copy of my original text and photos. Further reading revealed some slight, but obvious changes. They claim it was written by Kuljeet M Singh on 6 January 2007. They removed the opening paragraph mentioning that I won this at the IGDA social night. Finally, they replaced:
I picked up a 250GB Western Ditigal HDD for AU$92 from NetPlus in Osborne Park
I picked up a 250GB Western Ditigal HDD for AU$92 from FluidTek in Carlingform
Well, that made it pretty obvious this was a deliberate case of copyright infringement. I mean, they ripped and modified the entire article and didn’t even give me credit. That’s not just illegal, it goes against the internet’s own ethical code.
But what can you do right? Especially if they are a foreign company. Oh wait, they pretended to have bought stuff from Carlingform… that’s in Australia… that gives me some recourse. Who are these people again? Checking the top banner of their website:
and checking out whois their website is registered to reveals:
Domain Name………. k4technology.com
Creation Date…….. 2000-11-02
Registration Date…. 2000-11-02
Expiry Date………. 2009-11-02
Organisation Name…. k4technology
Organisation Address. 2 O’neill street
Organisation Address. Seven hills
Organisation Address. 2147
Organisation Address. NSW
Organisation Address. AUSTRALIA
They are in Australia. Excellent. There are a number of information sheets on the Australian Copyright Council website that give pretty clear instructions on what I can do. The first step is to contact the infringer:
Often people don’t mean to infringe copyrightÃ¢â‚¬â€they may do so through ignorance, or carelessness.
Yeah… this obviously wasn’t careless or ignorant. Next! Ah, a letter of demand:
If this approach doesn’t work, or is not suitable, the next step is usually to send a letter of demand.
That sounds better. I need to make clear demands… I’m thinking: take it down immediately and replace webpage with an apology and link to my review. Actually, forget that. With any webpage there they will still get hits. Maybe just take it down immediately.
If that doesn’t happen, it’s nice to know that there is a fallback option:
Another possibility is to contact the internet service provider (ISP). As a result of the AustraliaÃ¢â‚¬â€œUS Free Trade Agreement, it is in the ISPÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s interests to remove or disable access to copyright material on its system if it becomes aware that copyright is being infringed or Ã¢â‚¬Å“becomes aware of facts and circumstances that make it apparent that the material is likely to be infringingÃ¢â‚¬Â
I don’t really agree with the AUSFTA, but I’ll use it if I need to.
I’m not linking to their website, but you can find “their review” pretty easily via Google. Keep reading for my letter of demand.
The “Welland MediaBank ME-747AP review” article by “Kuljeet M Singh” on your website “http://www.k4technology.com/” is clearly an *unauthorized* copy and modification of a post on my blog:
In order to avoid legal action, you must *immediately* remove the offending text, images, links, and any reference to the review. If this is not done by Friday 23 February 2007, I will be directly contacting your ISP.
– Nick Lowe