Copyright All Access Today?

Many thanks for the email heads up, Shawn. When I designed this site (and particularly the graphics that make up the site) I did so striving to come up with something original. I had one instance a while back where someone was using my graphics and css which was obviously unpolished and unprofessional but this…this is impressive.

WadeBowen.com 1

WadeBowen.com 2

Click the images above for the life-size versions. I take screenshots of things like this for two reason.

  1. They usually don’t stay up long after they’re found out.
  2. After they’re taken down, there’s no better way to publicly humiliate the “designers”.

Apparently this is a site for a band/guy named Wade Bowen. Well Wade, I don’t know how much you paid these guys…but it was too much. Unfortunately I don’t have time right now to do any freelance work, but seeing as how you’re going to need a new design, and considering the shady nature of your current firm, perhaps I could direct you to some designers/firms that won’t rip off the latest CSSVault design.

Copyright All Access Today?

And to you, All Access Today, I hope you’ve noticed the traffic I’ve been directing your way. I’ve included your name and the name of your client in this post for a reason – Google Rank. You probably don’t want that kind of publicity, so if you would like me to remove this post you should: Change the look of, or take down http://www.wadebowen.com/ and contact me to explain your actions – particularly the reason you thought you could copyright this work.

Update: I just had a friendly IM conversation with a member of the Galleywinter forums where things are a apparently a little heated about this issue. He wanted to hear my side of the story and clear the air a bit. I’m glad he contacted me. The truth is that I have nothing against Wade Bowen, but I am still a little upset with his webdesign company. I have contacted All Access Today to request that the background be removed. They informed me that their “junior developer” got the image from a public forum for free background images. I responded with the following request:

I have posted details on my site of what I thought was a blatant ripoff of my work. If such a public forum for free background images exists, my issue is with that forum, not with your company and I would like to amend this post. If you or your junior developer cannot produce a direct link to the forum and string where my graphic is being disbursed, then I have no reason to believe this is the truth.

As of 3:30pm EST they have completely replaced the image, for which I am grateful, but All Access has yet to respond to my request for the source of their free background image.

17 Comments

  1. It took me a little bit to notice the straigh up copy, all that extra noise in the content area sort of threw me off.

    Then I just toggled back and forth from your site to his. Hmmm, the background image is the same (that is obvious), the shadow is exactly the same, the worn look down the sides…. shit everything in the content area is the same.

    How can people do that and honestly pass it off as their own work? It’s amazing!

  2. Ack! And it’s tables, euwwwwww.

  3. It’s just the background, and it’s not even the same color. Vertically repeating drop shadows are omnipresent. Left col right col is too.

  4. “It’s just the background”… There’s a monumental difference between using a site’s elements as inspiration and copying a site’s elements. (See Good Designers Copy, Great Designers Steal by Cameron Moll) The designer/s working on this project obviously took my background image, changed the hue and used it without any further manipulation. It wasn’t even the right width for their table based layout to begin with. If you look at their right menu, it doesn’t line up with the diagonal line texture at all. The bottom line is that as a graphic artist, my livelihood depends on my ability to claim authorship to the work that I produce. If my portfolio contains work that is not my own, I would not expect a client to be able to trust my ability to communicate their ideas and messages.

  5. At first glance I can see where goobski is coming from. But go ahead and take a look at those body background images, that’s not right.

    You cannot just outright copy such a key image and sell it to a client as your own work, not unless Jason gets a percentage of what this web designer charged for the website (since he saved them the entire cost of creating a layout, which I am sure took Jason a while to create).

  6. Oh by the way Jason, did you enter this over at Pirated Sites? I think you should.

  7. quit being a pussy. you site isnt that good and all he did was take the background. no css, no html. quit your crying. it looks like its changed now anyway.

  8. Well, they’ve run “their” background image through some filters now and used their default Photoshop texture brushes to further desecrate my original graphic. Great Job Guys! I could create a background image that would actually look good with their site in less than 30 minutes of my time if they’d be willing to pay my freelance rate. This is ridiculous.

  9. I wouldn’t have even known about this whole thing if it were not for a random kind person from Texas that emailed me to say my site was being “ripped pretty bad”. When I get up in the morning and go to work, website design is what I do. If you want to tell me you don’t like this site, that’s fine with me…but don’t try to convince me that the site in question is not a rippoff of my design. And no, it hasn’t “changed now anyway”.

    Justin, I haven’t entered it in at Pirated-Sites. I’m going to email AllAccessToday and give them a chance to change the site. Otherwise, I might.

  10. I don’t understand why people who charge for their work, think they can just copy soneone else’s work. That’s totally not acceptable, not in graphic design and not in programming. Even when I do my own web site, if I need a design, I don’t go looking at sites made by paid designers, I look through the listings of people willing to give their design away (b/c I can’t pay a graphic designer and don’t have the time to do the site myself).

    Why do people think you can just rip things from websites? If the site doesn’t say they are giving away the design, then you can’t rip it. It’s still very obvious where the offending site acquired their background and if you look at the other links on their site you will find the original with the hue changed. That is not acceptable, the change is not significantly different.

  11. Wow. Real scumbags… Sorry to hear about your stuff getting ripped off like that Jason. And then for them to spit in your face by only slightly changing your graphics after you’ve made their misdeeds public. Is there nothing else you can do besides link them here on your site or even Pirated Sites?

    If it makes you feel better, I wish I were half as good as you so people considered stealing MY stuff!

  12. Things seem to be cleared up, at least from an outside perspective. It was nice to see all the positive support you gained over at the Wade Bowen discussion forums.

    As to getting the image of a free gallery of images, come on. If that’s not a cop-out, I don’t know what is. First, blame it on a Junior Developer, then say they got the image from a free image forum…yeah right.

    How is Wade going to feel about paying good money for a site that was designed by a junior developer? Hmmm, I wouldn’t be too happy.

  13. Things definitely have calmed down quite a bit. I went over and made an appearence in the “Copied Website?” thread of the Galley Winter forums, and all I got was positive feedback. One of the admins there even offered to mail me one of Wade’s CDs. Before Danny (from the forum) contacted me, I figured everybody over there felt the same way as the first few commenters here. It’s good to know that EVERYBODY doesn’t think I’m being jerk about this.

  14. I think you are right in the actions you are taking… possibly being a little to kind to the folks who stole your design. The reason I say this is that it’s not the first time we have seen them use either templates or stolen work and passed it off as their own. Even using the same templates/stolen work for several of their clients at the same time. I mean… you have to wonder how legit or even talented a “web designer” can be when his buttons on his own site seem to never work… niiiiice check out http://www.guggenheimweb.com/# it’s the same guy. Chris Guggenheim…

  15. Yea, Chris is the one who I’ve been emailing…the guy whose “Junior Developer” found this mysterious public forum for free backgrounds. First off, real web-design companies don’t use “free background sources”. Those are for personal projects and more specifically those that aren’t making a profit off the design work. Perhaps I am being a little too kind, but I’m not looking for any kind of gain from this. …although, I have gained a few friends and a CD from this whole thing. 🙂 I just want him to know that he can’t pass something that isn’t his off as his own. The web design community isn’t all that large. If you do that kind of crap, you’re going to get caught red handed.

  16. Well, if one believes it was a free background service, where is it explained why all of these images fit into a design that nearly mirrors your site?

  17. Sorry you got ripped dude…Wade is cool. Too bad his ‘designers’ arn’t…

    B

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