There’s someone on eBay who has decided to sell downloadable PDFs containing compilations of knitting patterns: twenty patterns for the bargain price of 1.50 GBP.
Good thing it was so cheap, so it didn’t cost me much to verify that I was the victim of copyright infringement.
(Gotta use precedents for something, right? Edited to put the e-mail behind a cut)
From: rights @ girlfromauntie.com
Subject: Copyright infringement notice
To: [eBay wizard]
I am writing to you to demand that you cease infringing my copyright and withdraw your eBay listings containing copyright infringements immediately.
My name is Jenna Wilson, and I am the author of knitting patterns that have been both self-published and published by others on websites and in books. In particular, I have self-published knitting patterns on my website, girlfromauntie.com, and have had knitting articles and patterns published at Knitty.com. In particular, I am the author of a pattern and a photograph for a sleeveless knitted top, entitled “Summer funnel sleeveless top”, which is published on my website at:
By virtue of the Canadian Copyright Act, R.S.C. 1985, c. C-42, I am the copyright owner in both the pattern and the photograph. I am also entitled to copyright protection for my pattern and photograph in all WTO member countries, including the United Kingdom. I have the sole right to produce or reproduce my copyrighted works, and to authorize such activities by other people.
I discovered on May 29 that you have been offering for sale on eBay a number of PDF publications, including one entitled “20 Knitting Patterns for Summer Tops – Volume1″, under the userid goldskyuk. A list of eBay item numbers that I have identified, which may not be an exhaustive list, is provided at the end of this message. This publication is a compilation of twenty knitting patterns evidently collected from Internet sources. The pattern titled “Summer Top 3″ at pages 6 and 7 of this publication is a copy of my “Summer funnel sleeveless top” pattern and photograph, with only minor modifications. This is an infringement of my copyright.
The description accompanying these eBay items claims that you have “been granted resell or master resell rights.” In the case of my pattern, this is most definitely untrue. I have never granted you the right to sell or resell a copy of my pattern. You are therefore misleading the public with the assertion that you have been granted such permission. As your sales activities extend to Canada, your activities are also in violation of section 7(b) of the Canadian Trade-marks Act.
All of the works that I have published and have had published on my website and at Knitty.com are protected by copyright. Although I have made some works freely accessible to knitters, this does not give you the right or the privilege to include any of my works in anything that you have published or distributed, whether you earn a profit or not on its publication or distribution. You are infringing my copyright, and your infringing activities must cease immediately.
Therefore, I must insist that you immediately:
* withdraw all current eBay item listings for the PDF publication “20 Knitting Patterns for Summer Tops – Volume1″;
* refund me (eBay userid mighty_paladin) for the purchase of this PDF publication, which was necessary to ascertain your infringing activities;
* cease selling or distributing any publication, in downloadable PDF format, or in any other medium, that includes my “Summer funnel sleeveless top” pattern or photograph or any other work authored by me;
* remove any statement in your eBay listings that indicates that you have been granted permission to reproduce content, when you in fact did not receive permission to reproduce the content you have reproduced; and
* confirm that you have done each of the above by e-mail to me at this address.
By this e-mail, I am also warning you not to infringe my rights in any other work authored by me or published by me. You may identify such works as being authored by Jenna Wilson or “the girl from auntie”.
This message is sent without prejudice to my ability to pursue any other legal recourse that I deem necessary to enforce my rights, or to seek further remedies including, but not restricted to, monetary compensation or injunctive relief. If you do not comply with the above demands, I may take whatever legal action is required to protect my copyright without any further notice to you.
I have no knowledge as to whether you have secured permission from other copyright holders before republishing their works. If you have not, I strongly suggest that you remove from sale all patterns for which you do not have explicit permission.
The eBay item numbers that I have identified are the following:
8288296657, 8288393648, 8288579381, 8288672469, 8288760073, 8288933341, 8289010730, 8289177910, 8289265469, 8289368692, 8289471667, 8289571594
8289089817, 8288112175, 8287828084, 8287733680, 8288017300, 8288846388, 8287550937, 8287454546, 8287257578, 8287172354, 8286922468, 8286764052
8287015181, 8286676056, 8286500216, 8286405789, 8286230650, 8286133800, 8285826951, 8285688682, 8285505669, 8285417885, 8285236632, 8285161584, 8285016110, 8284940365, 210000134971, 8284756638, 210000034953, 8284675686, 8284518694, 8284353665
By the way, this isn’t a full-blown, nasty cease-and-desist letter.
I’ve managed to identify the other nineteen patterns in the PDF. I’m about to e-mail the two individuals that I know are copyright holders tonight; the rest I only know as companies, so I’ll e-mail them tomorrow.