Over the weekend, several soap makers found that their products pictures and descriptions had been posted on another website without permission. I'm not talking about "oh we posted it but we gave you proper credit." Nope, it was more of a "oh, we're totally stealing all of your hard work and pretending that it's ours and by the way, we're trying to sell these things as if they are our own."
To say the least.
I completely understand that once you put something on the internet, it more or less becomes fair game for those people with no scruples. However, the original person owns the idea and execution of that idea. So reporting these things as stolen intellectual property (IP) is the appropriate action.
This extends beyond just soap of course. Movie companies, sports teams, books quotes - those are all protected by copyright laws at a minimum. They may also have their own trademarks and/or patents. Using their IP, especially with the intent to profit from it, is a big no-no.
"But everyone does it." Actually no, everyone doesn't. And those that do, will get caught one day. Those movie companies, sports teams, and book publishers? I promise they have way better attorneys than the average person. I wouldn't want to risk it.
Current Status: waiting for my items to be removed from the website after a cease and desist letter