The often-imitated Jess Fink

jess fink cookie comparison

From left to right: Jess Fink's original design, the Forever 21 t-shirt design, the Goldman work

If imitation truly is flattery, Troy artist Jess Fink should be getting a lot of compliments.

Somehow we're guessing that's not the way it feels.

Fink tweeted last night that she's come across yet another piece inspired-by/ripped-off-from her work. This time she says it's Todd Goldman, an artist with a huge merchandising operation. She posted a screenshot of a Goldman work that bears a strong resemblance to her "Cookie loves Milk" design.

She tweeted yesterday that she sent a cease and desist letter to the site selling the work -- when we checked today, we didn't see it listed in the collection (update: here's a screenshot).

As Jessica Pasko told us last year, this has happened to Fink before, by stores such as Forever 21 and Hot Topic. And in a tweet last night, she alleged that Goldman's David and Goliath t-shirt line had engaged in similar borrowing of her work before (she wrote in 2008 that Goldman had actually offered her a job at one point).

Other artists have alleged that Goldman's operation has also borrowed their work. In 2007, Goldman apologized to an artist for essentially copying his work -- and then said of the firestorm of online criticism: "This is just a bunch of hater artists trying to take me down. I'm not an online Web guy. I'm not trying to rip people off. I work with a team of artists at David & Goliath. We create thousands of designs." Attorneys for Goldman's company have since pressured news sites to take down stories about Goldman's alleged copying. [Cartoon Brew] [Wikipedia] [Las Vegas Sun] [Wired]

Fink has a bunch of designs available on Threadless. And she has her own Etsy store, too.

[via Metafilter, which has a long discussion about these situations]

Goldman image from BillionDollarBabies.com via Jess Fink

Comments

Yeah... t-shirt design can be competitive. And evil.

If you do a quick search on CafePress, you'll find that there are many more designs that are similar to Jess Fink's work: http://shop.cafepress.com/cookie-love-milk

CP does have an Intellectual Property Rights Policy. They sometime yoink a design within a few minutes of it being uploaded. But they often rely on others to report problems before pulling items off the shelf.

The striking thing is just how much better Jessica's design is than either of the rip off's. Can't steal talent even if you can steal ideas.

I worked at an Intellectual Property Law firm - and one of the hardest things to do is to police the market for infringing (copied) work. Almost all websites have Intellectual Property Rights Policies that direct an individual to report copied material. The websites are generally very welcoming of such complaints and act quickly to take down items which should not be there. Jess should police such websites each week and identify specific items for the websites should take down - which would protect her work and also put out a message that she is actively watching out for copiers. No need to hire a law firm for such work!

Say Something!

We'd really like you to take part in the conversation here at All Over Albany. But we do have a few rules here. Don't worry, they're easy. The first: be kind. The second: treat everyone else with the same respect you'd like to see in return. Cool? Great, post away. Comments are moderated so it might take a little while for your comment to show up. Thanks for being patient.

What's All Over Albany?

All Over Albany is for interested and interesting people in New York's Capital Region. In other words, it's for you. It's kind of like having a smart, savvy friend who can help you find out what's up. Oh, and our friends call us AOA.

Search

Recently on All Over Albany

The week ahead

Here are a few things to keep in mind, look forward to, or keep busy with this week, from the weather (WTF), from Presidents Day,... (more)

Gawking at the ceiling of the Smith Building

As we've noted before, the Smith Building stands across from the Capitol all buttoned up and dressed for work its quietly tasteful way for work.... (more)

Big downtown residential project approved (again), street ownership intrigue, and other exciting tales of the Albany Planning Board

Exciting Tales of the Albany Planning Board is a program recorded before a live studio audience once a month in which the fates of multi-million... (more)

Moose spotting

The state Department of Environmental Conservation is doing another aerial survey of the moose population in the Adirondack Park. And, of course, there are... (more)

Morning Blend

Jay Street fire inspection trial Thursday included testimony from former residents of the 104 Jay St apartment building, one who told the court upkeep of... (more)

Recent Comments

The current property has been for sale for nearly 15 years. The owners are getting out of the Bowling business, it's happened all over the region. There's a buyer, and the city must evaluate the opportunity cost doing nothing. ...

Big downtown residential project approved (again), street ownership intrigue, and other exciting tales of the Albany Planning Board

...has 3 comments, most recently from Ian Benjamin

No one asked, but...

...has 10 comments, most recently from Taylor

Gawking at the ceiling of the Smith Building

...has 2 comments, most recently from Dave

Moose spotting

...has 1 comment, most recently from mg

The Al Tech Steel factory

...has 11 comments, most recently from john gernon