June 13, 2012

Bearlove Good, Cancer Bad

I've blogged a couple of times (namely here and here) about people stealing artist's work and taking it on as their own.  It happens and sometimes the offended party can do something about it an sometimes they can't.

Web cartoonist Matthew Inman, who does The Oatmeal website had been having problems with Funnyjunk, an aggregate site where members can upload "funny junk" they encounter online.  Matthew contends that Funnyjunk was stripping his identifying marks off his work and then posting it on their site without attributing Inman.  You can read Inman's blog post about the ordeal here.

There was some stupid back and forth between the two sites, although it looks like the stupid part was more on the Funnyjunk side of things.  Some stolen material was taken down, but a lot remained.

Fast-forward a year and Inman gets a letter from FunnyJunk's lawyer (and owner) asking for $20K because Inman defamed Funnyjunk by complaining about their stealing of his work and because when you do a google search for Funnyjunk, The Oatmeal comes up high in the search rankings.  A sad, disturbing, yet funny as hell commented-copy of the letter is on The Oatmeal.

Matthew is a total smart-ass....and his "formal" response to the whole ordeal is ....wait for it.....wait for it.....EPIC.
The Oatmeal response to Funnyjunk's letter

At last count the $20K goal has been exceeded by almost $100K!  That's over $50K to the National Wildlife Federation and the same to the American Cancer Society.

Evidently Funnyjunk isn't taking any of this in good sport.  According to MSNBC, Funnyjunk has reached out to IndieGoGo, the folks who are managing the donation aspect of Inman's drive, and asked them to disable the campaign.  Funnyjunk's lawyer thinks that the effort is against the Terms of Service.

Seriously?  Of all three parties mentioned, IndieGoGo, The Oatmeal, and Funnyjunk, the only one who hasn't had access to the specific agreement/Terms of service for this fundraiser is the only one complaining.

Check it all out for yourself....and donate if you feel so inclined.

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