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FA/IMVU Discussion

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AshleyAshes

Arcade Snowmew Of Doom
http://www.furaffinity.net/journal/6606222/

So, the other day I found someone selling my art on IMVU. I asked him to take it down, and he said he did. Then I saw the thread in the forum that showed the Access Pass Only stuff, and my stuff was still there. So, I poked Dragoneer about it. I -JUST got this PM

Is anyone else wondering why Strypes gets to 'Poke Dragoneer about it' when everyone else must to go through a DMCA process? This seems like special treatment for a certain class of furry artist.
 

FYIAD

Member
http://www.furaffinity.net/journal/6606222/



Is anyone else wondering why Strypes gets to 'Poke Dragoneer about it' when everyone else must to go through a DMCA process? This seems like special treatment for a certain class of furry artist.

Not to sound evil, but no.

I do not wonder. Nor am I shocked, and I don’t even really fault him.

If someone close to me was getting harmed and I was in a position to speed the recovery, I’d do the same, even if I could not do that for everyone else. Again, that’s why I’m a proponent of not leaving that sort of power in one person’s hands. Just because I would be tempted to help my people first does not make it right; and it’s why I keep harping on spreading power as even the mere appearance of favoritism or corruption is destructive. One need not worry about another’s intent or temptations if said other lacks the capability to act, though. ("The enemy cannot press a button if you disable his hand!" :p It applies to more than just Starship Troopers!)
 

Accountability

Enthusiastic Downloader
http://www.furaffinity.net/journal/6606222/



Is anyone else wondering why Strypes gets to 'Poke Dragoneer about it' when everyone else must to go through a DMCA process? This seems like special treatment for a certain class of furry artist.

B-b-but Dragoneer is NOT helping popular people!!! He's just helping people!

How he helps all these people seems to vary though. I am shocked. Shocked I say! :rolleyes:
 

PheagleAdler

Well-Known Member
B-b-but Dragoneer is NOT helping popular people!!! He's just helping people!

How he helps all these people seems to vary though. I am shocked. Shocked I say! :rolleyes:

I know, how horrible! I mean, he's got his negative image to maintain! ;)
 

RCRuskin

New Member
Finally, here on page 50, I get access to FA forums again!

My lawyer, who specializes in business law, laughed a big laugh when I told him what happened. To IMVU's relief, I'm sure, he also told me I personally do not have a case, but he did raise a question:

What about financial damages to those whose artwork was stolen and traded without their knowledge? They should get at least a percentage of the sale.
 

AshleyAshes

Arcade Snowmew Of Doom
Finally, here on page 50, I get access to FA forums again!

My lawyer, who specializes in business law, laughed a big laugh when I told him what happened. To IMVU's relief, I'm sure, he also told me I personally do not have a case, but he did raise a question:

What about financial damages to those whose artwork was stolen and traded without their knowledge? They should get at least a percentage of the sale.

This is why you don't boast about your big lawsuit plans without even talking to a lawyer first. :X
 

Emil

Roll Fizzlebeef
Very few of them would have registered their copyrights and it is my understanding that you are not entitled to monetary damages unless you actually register the copyright.

The most they can do is issue a DMCA and take them to court to force a takedown if necessary.
 

Kitoth

Member
After all the posts and journalsand backlash etc I finally had to put my two cents in to all of this.

First and foremost I am not an artist at all, i do follow a lot of artist that is for sure... anyway with that out for the way here are some points i'd like to make.

1: Before this whole IMVU\Fa thing was announced the art theft was going on on IMVU and not just there but Second life as well. so all this rage at FA and Imvu is sort of redundant in my opinion.

2: So many artist are either thinking about moving to another site, be it sofurry, weasly, etc but come on be realistic here, do you think because you moved to a different site no one will try to steal art form that site and use it on IMVU, Second life or some other place. I mean hell look at e621 site, tons of art from various artists up for grabs and no one has complained about that site.

3: For artist that many many follow on here and leave to another site or just leave the fandom do you think about those who follow you and commission from you? sometimes i wonder because some have moved to another site and traffic is low and some change there name so some users do not know who they are anymore and I'm sure some just stop because they do not want to have to go to multiple sites, for all they follow, and yes i am referring to inkbunny, sofurry, tumblr, weasly, DA and here. I mean that is a lot to follow.. Also some artist who do go to another site never tell anyone they left leaving many wondering where they are. no journal or pic to say " Hey i am no longer posting here"

I guess in short, if you don't want your art stolen, don't post it online at all. If you want to leave Fa let you fans know where and if your changing your name. don't just leave and expect everyone to know where you went. we are not mind readers here. Lastly if you for once think any site is safe out there even a pay site then you really do not know much about the internet, no place is safe as long as 1 person posts to another site without your knowledge.
 

FYIAD

Member
Very few of them would have registered their copyrights and it is my understanding that you are not entitled to monetary damages unless you actually register the copyright.

The most they can do is issue a DMCA and take them to court to force a takedown if necessary.

Negative.

Copyright attaches immediately upon creation of the work. Registering just makes lawsuits easier, but it isn't a requirement.

Here's the snag artists are going to run into:

Artist: They stole my art and profited, I demand recompense!
Lawyer: Well, there is a nonrefundable retainer of $500.
Artist: How much could I get if I win?
Lawyer: A portion of proceeds. Maybe $50? ..sir? Sir! Why are you bashing your head into my desk?!

And to even get that much, I think you have to show they created a situation in which they knowingly* profited from items they knew*to be stolen.
You can argue that they should have known, as in cases of willful ignorance; you can't do that Enron-style "Yes I'm CFO, but I don't understand math!" excuse.

Either way, the cost of arguing the case far exceeds the compensation you're going to get because you'd only be going after IMVU's share of the gains directly stemming from the theft -- and if you went after each user individually, well, that's got the same problem but for different reasons. You have to subpena IMVU for user information, track down each user, tie user to legal person/entity, and sue each individually. The cost of even going down that road far exceeds any possible gains.

Again, I'm not a lawyer, but I've experienced enough to strongly believe this avenue has a negative expected value; you could do it just to make IMVU spend money and/or effort, but I'm not looking to piss away my funds just to make IMVU a little less rich.
 

Emil

Roll Fizzlebeef
Negative.

Copyright attaches immediately upon creation of the work. Registering just makes lawsuits easier, but it isn't a requirement.

Here's the snag artists are going to run into:

Artist: They stole my art and profited, I demand recompense!
Lawyer: Well, there is a nonrefundable retainer of $500.
Artist: How much could I get if I win?
Lawyer: A portion of proceeds. Maybe $50? ..sir? Sir! Why are you bashing your head into my desk?!

And to even get that much, I think you have to show they created a situation in which they knowingly* profited from items they knew*to be stolen.
You can argue that they should have known, as in cases of willful ignorance; you can't do that Enron-style "Yes I'm CFO, but I don't understand math!" excuse.

Either way, the cost of arguing the case far exceeds the compensation you're going to get because you'd only be going after IMVU's share of the gains directly stemming from the theft -- and if you went after each user individually, well, that's got the same problem but for different reasons. You have to subpena IMVU for user information, track down each user, tie user to legal person/entity, and sue each individually. The cost of even going down that road far exceeds any possible gains.

Again, I'm not a lawyer, but I've experienced enough to strongly believe this avenue has a negative expected value; you could do it just to make IMVU spend money and/or effort, but I'm not looking to piss away my funds just to make IMVU a little less rich.

http://copyright.gov:8081/help/faq/faq-general.html#automatic

Why should I register my work if copyright protection is automatic?

Registration is recommended for a number of reasons. Many choose to register their works because they wish to have the facts of their copyright on the public record and have a certificate of registration. Registered works may be eligible for statutory damages and attorney's fees in successful litigation. Finally, if registration occurs within 5 years of publication, it is considered prima facie evidence in a court of law. See Circular 1, Copyright Basics, section “Copyright Registration” and Circular 38b, Highlights of Copyright Amendments Contained in the Uruguay Round Agreements Act (URAA), on non-U.S. works.

This implies to me that's the only way you're getting money to me. But that's just the way I interpret it. Could be wrong *shrug*
 

RedSavage

Rattlesnake Flavored
After all the posts and journalsand backlash etc I finally had to put my two cents in to all of this.

First and foremost I am not an artist at all, i do follow a lot of artist that is for sure... anyway with that out for the way here are some points i'd like to make.

1: Before this whole IMVU\Fa thing was announced the art theft was going on on IMVU and not just there but Second life as well. so all this rage at FA and Imvu is sort of redundant in my opinion.

2: So many artist are either thinking about moving to another site, be it sofurry, weasly, etc but come on be realistic here, do you think because you moved to a different site no one will try to steal art form that site and use it on IMVU, Second life or some other place. I mean hell look at e621 site, tons of art from various artists up for grabs and no one has complained about that site.
..............

I guess in short, if you don't want your art stolen, don't post it online at all. If you want to leave Fa let you fans know where and if your changing your name. don't just leave and expect everyone to know where you went. we are not mind readers here. Lastly if you for once think any site is safe out there even a pay site then you really do not know much about the internet, no place is safe as long as 1 person posts to another site without your knowledge.

Lemme use a half-hammered metaphor.

Not everyone is anti-government. But we all do disagree with, say, China's politics. And the way they undermine our economy through forced labor. ( I know we willingly outsource to them anyways, but this is just a fucking metaphore)

So say one day the US join Russia and says, "We are now part of Russia! We still are the same, and nothing will change, and we will benefit greatly for it!"


Would you be okay with this?
Would you really believe it?
Would you not be upset from someone willingly giving up our lively hood to someone who constantly undermines it and doesn't give a shit how?


Your apathetic and defending attitude, quite frankly, dissappoints me.
 

FYIAD

Member
After all the posts and journalsand backlash etc I finally had to put my two cents in to all of this.

First and foremost I am not an artist at all, i do follow a lot of artist that is for sure... anyway with that out for the way here are some points i'd like to make.

1: Before this whole IMVU\Fa thing was announced the art theft was going on on IMVU and not just there but Second life as well. so all this rage at FA and Imvu is sort of redundant in my opinion.

1) Bob & Sue
Bob is married to Sue, he’s loving the exclusive relationship and his wife.
Bob and Sue have a friend named Steve.
Steve has been getting with Sue every other Tuesday for the last few years.
Bob just found out about it and is understandably irate, so he confronts Sue.
So Sue snaps, “Oh, now you care but I’ve doing fucking Steve for years!”

See, Bob is upset because Bob didn’t know for years; Bob just found out. That’s the situation here, almost no one had ever heard of IMVU, much less was aware of all the theft and fraud. The problem may not be new, but people are just now confronting it; that’s kind of a vital note.


2: So many artist are either thinking about moving to another site, be it sofurry, weasly, etc but come on be realistic here, do you think because you moved to a different site no one will try to steal art form that site and use it on IMVU, Second life or some other place. I mean hell look at e621 site, tons of art from various artists up for grabs and no one has complained about that site.

2) IMVU vs e621
The key difference here is that e621 isn’t profiting from it, to the best of my knowledge. (Full disclosure: I use e621 all the time, it enjoys the benefit of a tagging system people are forced to use; I’ve found many an artist there. To me there is a very, very clear difference between profitless copyright violation and profiting from stolen goods, but that’s another matter altogether. I have no doubt that plenty of artists aren’t thrilled with e621, though, which why there is a Do Not Post list that is followed rather closely.)

The fact that IMVU is profiting directly from mass theft, and rather nakedly at that, makes the crime seem a great deal more organized and wrong than anything e621 has ever done. (I could be wrong on that, though; I appreciate correction if I am, but I don't think the ads on e621 actually turn a profit.)

3: For artist that many many follow on here and leave to another site or just leave the fandom do you think about those who follow you and commission from you? sometimes i wonder because some have moved to another site and traffic is low and some change there name so some users do not know who they are anymore and I'm sure some just stop because they do not want to have to go to multiple sites, for all they follow, and yes i am referring to inkbunny, sofurry, tumblr, weasly, DA and here. I mean that is a lot to follow.. Also some artist who do go to another site never tell anyone they left leaving many wondering where they are. no journal or pic to say " Hey i am no longer posting here"

I guess in short, if you don't want your art stolen, don't post it online at all. If you want to leave Fa let you fans know where and if your changing your name. don't just leave and expect everyone to know where you went. we are not mind readers here. Lastly if you for once think any site is safe out there even a pay site then you really do not know much about the internet, no place is safe as long as 1 person posts to another site without your knowledge.

3) Abandonment vs Branching Out
I don’t think too many artists are outright fleeing FA at this point, and many of the ones that are afford to do so are the big names where enough people will follow that it won’t wreck their finances. Fishermen are going to cast their nets where they know the fish to be, not where they’re going to be when some future event happens; right now FA is leading the pack and that isn’t going to change in 2015 unless IMVU does something drastic.
However, artists and users alike should be encouraged to branch out and spread their existence so that all their eggs aren’t in the same proverbial basket. This should act as a wake up call to some and a reminder to others than we shouldn’t be invested in FA to such a degree that we all ignore the cousin sites. To that end, people should be saving art that they like and syncing their watch lists as best they can manage between the other sites. In short, it is about being prepared to survive on the off chance FA goes to hell without warning.

Still, I’m not faulting people for ditching if they do; it’s better to worry before it’s too late to act, but I prefer to stay and try to influence things as best I can. That’s the entire reason I gave up complete anonymity and stopped biting my tongue.

Lastly, I agree. Nowhere is safe and I oughtn’t have been so complacent that I came to believe FA would always be FA; I regret that, it was a stupid mistake on my part. Semper vigilans, right? And always be prepared.
 
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quote_icon.png
Originally Posted by Vaelarsa The next time one of them tries it, just use the gayest accent you can muster, and say "Chh. Honey, unless you got a penis under that skirt, I am sooo not even listening right now" and walk away.


ROFLMAO
 

FYIAD

Member
http://copyright.gov:8081/help/faq/faq-general.html#automatic



This implies to me that's the only way you're getting money to me. But that's just the way I interpret it. Could be wrong *shrug*

Huh.

Okay, here's how I'm reading that: you can file and retroactively be granted recognized status from the date of proven creation. So you don't have to file when the work is created, but you do have to file along the way to filing a lawsuit. Right?

Step 1: Find stolen content
Step 2: Talk to lawyer
Step 3: File for recognized copyright
Step 4: Sue

..I think. >.>

[Edit/Addition]
I mean, if it isn't that way, then there would be minimal advantage to the fact that copyright automatically attaches upon creation.
Or am I utterly missing something here?
 
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Don't forget to mention that sueing is expensive and you may not get much after all the lawyer fees. So its really not worth it in the long run, Sueing sounds like a great way to go but when you really think about it lawyers are going to Take a huge Chunk of your winnings leaving you with maybe 50 bucks.
 

FYIAD

Member
Don't forget to mention that sueing is expensive and you may not get much after all the lawyer fees. So its really not worth it in the long run, Sueing sounds like a great way to go but when you really think about it lawyers are going to Take a huge Chunk of your winnings leaving you with maybe 50 bucks.

Exactly what I was saying above. :p I mean, it’s one of those things that if you hit that $500Million Mega Millions Jackpot and want to have some fun, then it’s viable.

This is sort of the reverse of those nuisance patent lawsuits that go around. They’ll say that you’re in violation of such-and-such because they own patent #Pi and they’re very upset about the violation. However, they’d be willing to sell you a license for, say, $3,500.

Why $3,500? Because they know it’s almost surely going to be $5,000 to start any sort of fight; and that’s if the patent it just absolutely absurd because invalidating a patent it just ridiculously expensive. The number is specifically designed so that it isn’t worth your time to fight it, but it also isn’t worth the liability to ignore it.

Simply said, the intellectual property laws in the United States may be flawed. :p
 

PheagleAdler

Well-Known Member
1) Bob & Sue
Bob is married to Sue, he’s loving the exclusive relationship and his wife.
Bob and Sue have a friend named Steve.
Steve has been getting with Sue every other Tuesday for the last few years.
Bob just found out about it and is understandably irate, so he confronts Sue.
So Sue snaps, “Oh, now you care but I’ve doing fucking Steve for years!”

See, Bob is upset because Bob didn’t know for years; Bob just found out. That’s the situation here, almost no one had ever heard of IMVU, much less was aware of all the theft and fraud. The problem may not be new, but people are just now confronting it; that’s kind of a vital note.

And Bob was showing off Sue very frequently to the local population. Some of these people may find Sue very attractive and try to steal her away, a fact which Bob may or may not be aware of. The only question remains, who ELSE has been getting with Sue for all these years?

Lemme use a half-hammered metaphor.

Not everyone is anti-government. But we all do disagree with, say, China's politics. And the way they undermine our economy through forced labor. ( I know we willingly outsource to them anyways, but this is just a fucking metaphore)

So say one day the US join Russia and says, "We are now part of Russia! We still are the same, and nothing will change, and we will benefit greatly for it!"


Would you be okay with this?

Not really, no, but I don't know IMVU nearly as much as I know Russia. I'd compare it to another random country I know little about, maybe Myanmar or something?
 
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Emil

Roll Fizzlebeef
"If you didn't own this and leave it lying around, I wouldn't have taken it! And stop dressing like a harlot while you're at it!"

*edit* This is called victim blaming. Its bad.
 
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FYIAD

Member
And Bob was showing off Sue very frequently to the local population. Some of these people may find Sue very attractive and try to steal her away, a fact which Bob may or may not be aware of. The only question remains, who ELSE has been getting with Sue for all these years?

A fine question! :p I just know if there's pictures anywhere on 'net, they're bound to be on IMVU by now! Available in poster format for a reasonable price, even!

Quick, someone run a search!
 

Runefox

Kitsune of the PC Master Race
This whole lawsuit thing seems to be pointing in the wrong direction; IMVU specifically declines to provide any damages for sold works, and I suppose the fact that they're purchased with funbux insulates them from that responsibility despite being compelled to respond to DMCA claims. Whether or not that's legal is a decision for the courts, but it seems to me that it could go either way and isn't a battle worth fighting since no one stands to gain anything.

The big sticking point that seems like it's ripe for legal picking is the fact that AP content is hidden from view and there is no obvious, legitimate method for discovering what is behind it without first paying for the privilege. It implies specific intent to prevent copyright holders from discovering abuse in order to continue to profit both from VIP passes and from sales of the stolen content. In effect, they're using stolen content as incentives to drive sales both to their VIP section and credits to purchase these items. This obviously spreads further than the furry subset, as there's plenty of copyrighted works in anime and other categories of artwork as well being sold. The VIP section itself contains as many or more pieces of adult furry content as the GA store does clean, and virtually all of it (at least the vast majority) is stolen. The problem, then, becomes one of gathering enough copyright holders with enough at collective stake to make a lawsuit worthwhile, since the cost of combating IMVU would be great.

With that in mind, I'm not sure that legal action is the best decision. We can however agree that the business practices are despicable at best, and a middle finger to the artists whose main source of distribution these people now own. No amount of damage control will save them from this beyond a complete restructuring of their store, and frankly, I don't think they have the motivation to do it.

Anyway, Dragoneer bending over for popular artists, surprising no one. More at 11.

EDIT: lol @ the art thief being all salty about losing his stolen art business
 
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I am compelled to agree with you here, I mean its costly to form a lawsuit and you may get nothing back from it in the end. THey will simply say the Pay wall is to deter minors and thus can beat your claim. Really it seems the only course is the GO the Long drawn out BS DMCA file system way. unfortunately with the sheer amount of stolen art its beyond ridiculous the number of claims that are going to have to be filed. Besides that What Moonriver said the people selling can edit change the image at will and even the description. so what was furry stolen art is no longer and when you file your DMCA they get it look at the piece and say nope not a legal claim and deny you only to later have the seller change it back and earn money on it again
 

krystalfox77

Offcial Krystal
And here I was thinking that this conversation wasn't going anywhere lol. One shouldn't have to file a claim to get their art back, to go through a convoluted process. All the argumentum ad hominem against 'Neer, talks of lawsuits and damages, and people say drama is boring :rolleyes:
 
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Emil

Roll Fizzlebeef
IMVU is a for profit business. The only way you could influence them to do anything is by hitting them where it hurts: their wallet.

I think we've established that lawsuits won't work.

I think we've established that filing DMCAs is their current policy, and it isn't nearly adequate.

So as far as I can see, the only options anyone would have to attempt to actually change IMVUs policy and hurt their wallet would be boycott and direct action.

But I doubt anyone here would actually do that or even take the idea seriously *shrug*
 
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