k4 Technology blatantly copied and modified my Welland MediaBank ME-747AP review!

Update: Turns out k4 were full of crap. Their recent articles are ripped from other sites and still posted under the name Kuljeet M Singh.

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:

k4technology_are_bastards_0.jpg

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

with:

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:

k4technologies_are_bastards_1.jpg

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.
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 copyright—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 Australia–US Free Trade Agreement, it is in the ISP’s interests to remove or disable access to copyright material on its system if it becomes aware that copyright is being infringed or “becomes aware of facts and circumstances that make it apparent that the material is likely to be infringing”

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.

Chandra Paresh,

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:

– http://nick.onetwenty.org/index.php/2006/10/25/welland-mediabank-me-747ap-review/

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

8 thoughts on “k4 Technology blatantly copied and modified my Welland MediaBank ME-747AP review!”

  1. I personally think posting the Technical Contact’s details like that is a bit rude myself. I know I am a technical contact for many domains (of which I don’t control content for) and I wouldn’t appreciate my name being plastered up like that and I wouldn’t do that to others. Especially considering they seem to have acted swiftly on the matter.

  2. You might want to google-search other articles ‘Written by Kuljeet M Singh’ and contact their real owners; and follow this coward every few months. I noticed no ‘about us’ or contact details – did they take that information down too?

  3. What a terrible fate. I actually bought one of these from my local umart (http://umart.net.au/au/) and as soon as I joyfully connected my HDD, the power cable snapped off the board. I immediately exchanged it for a Noontec Blue Eye media player. After trying that out for a few days and there were some annoying things about it like the filename cropping, then one morning I started it up and smoke started to pour out of it! so another exchange for the same player and this time round the power button doesnt work so I have to manually yank the plug out. Couldnt be bothered to swap again…damn restocking fee!

    but anyways, hows this player holding up?

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