Wednesday, December 17, 2008

An unplesant topic... by Vanessa

This is a post from a designer I know on her blog and I'd like to post it on my blog as it is exactly how all designers feel about pirating.


As much as I hate to address this topic on my blog, the time has come that it just can't be avoided. The topic is PIRATING. If you are a digital pirate, please read on. If you are not, then please read on because I would like to address this subject from both sides of the fence.

Before I became a designer, I did not understand what the big deal was about people sharing pirated kits, scripts, elements, etc. It was no big deal because what is one kit, one overlay, one script? Now that I am a designer, I realize what the big deal is.

First of all, there are only a handful of designers that actually make what could be called "big bucks" as far as scrapping goes. Most of us are just trying to earn a few extra dollars here and there to help support our families. A lot of us are stay-at-home moms or disabled people who are just trying to supplement our meager incomes. It can take anywhere from a day to a week to complete a full scrap kit. It depends on the time we have to work on them and how our creativity is working at that particular time. We don't have tubes and templates to make our kits from. Most of us create at least 75% of our items from scratch. It takes a lot of imagination and there is a lot of trashing and starting over. We literally put our heart and soul into these designs.

So, a pirate comes along and they purchase a kit for say $4.00. They think "well, this is only a 4.00 kit, how much harm could that do?" So they upload the kit to RapidShare or MediaFire or 4shared. You get the idea. Then they share this link through every Yahoo and Google group they belong to. The members in those groups turn around and share the same link to all of the groups they belong to. Within a 24 hour period, those links to that $4.00 kit are probably shared with well over 1000 people.

I realize that every person that downloads a private kit would not necessarily purchase the kit if they had to, but even if you break it down to 100 people that would have purchased the kit had they not obtained it illegally, that is STILL $400.00 that you have literally STOLEN from that designer.

If you created something unique to you and sold it at a flea market and the next week you went back to sell your wares again and found out that a person down the aisle from you had copied your design and made duplicates and was giving them away, how would you feel? I'd say that you would be pretty upset that all of your personal taste, creativity and hard work was for nothing. That is exactly how designers feel when their work is pirated and shared all over the digital arts world.

The majority of designers are losing money more each month. As pirating grows more rampant, I have watched my own sales drop a LOT. It seems funny to me that while my sales dropped, instances of finding my kits used in sig tags and such have appeared more and more. I don't have permission from a very well known designer to use hr name in my blog, but I know for a fact that this designers kits are shared through share groups within 4 hours of them going up for sale. I can't even imagine how much money she has lost.

For me, I create kits and freebies because I love creating. If someone sees a kit of mine that they would like to use for a tutorial and give me credit for the kit, I would be open to giving them the kit.. But please....before you pirate and before you download another pirated kit, put yourself in the place of the designer for a moment.

Thank you!

Cancer Moon Creations

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