In May 2012, I wrote a blog titled “Competitive Intelligence 201: Locating and Protecting your Web IP”…In the blog post, I gave a couple of examples of companies that appeared to ‘borrow’ from competitors. It appears as if one of the competitors was already on the case. I would have hoped the blog would have served as a warning. Clearly, by this default judgement against the company referenced, it did not.
As can be seen in the judgement, no only was a 5 figure award granted but the judge also found that:
“FURTHER ORDERED that Defendants, their officers, agents, servants, employees, attorneys, and those persons in active concert or participation with them who receive actual notice of the injunction are enjoined from directly or indirectly reproducing, preparing derivative works, distributing copies, performing, publicly displaying the copyrighted elements of the Triple Canopy website, including, but not limited to, using or distributing any material on the (COMPANYP website located at www.COMPANY.com that infringes Triple Canopy, Inc.’s copyrighted material. Within 15 days from receipt of this Order, Defendants shall deliver to Triple Canopy or certify under oath that all copies of infringing material have been taken down and destroyed;”
A quick review of the website shows that it was indeed taken down. Only a landing page currently exists.
What can be done? Potential legal action may be justified. According to Terry Church (Chairperson of the IP and licensing group): “Website content is protected under federal copyright laws. The law protects your exclusive right to reproduce or display copies of your written work, including your written work on the Internet. No one else may use it without your permission. Many people don’t know that you don’t have to register website content to claim copyright rights on it. Under federal law, copyright rights arise automatically when a piece of written work is created.”
In several previous posts, I have introduced basic concepts of competitive intelligence and vetting organizations. (you can read the posts here One, Two, Three, Four)