Putting Code Together Since 1987

Posts Tagged ‘copyright’

Can You Trust Your Web Designer?

In Web Design on January 3, 2008 at 8:41 am

A little while ago I came across a story about a couple of firms who had been sued in 2006 by Getty Images for illegal use of images on their websites.  One of the companies was a small accountancy firm in Liverpool, and the other a taxi firm in Taunton.  Both small companies.

Fair enough – you steal a picture, you pay the penalty.  However, these images were placed there not by the companies, but by the web designers they’d hired.  The end result came to a loss of reputation for the two firms (but perhaps some nice collatoral marketing) and added costs and hassle.

EPUK’s commentary on the copyright story

Now, I don’t have much sympathy for companies that steal copyright – they can offset their costs against taxes so shouldn’t really feel a need.  And given that a website is a business benefit, they should be paying for all images anyway as it generates money for them.  But what does stink is that they’ve been made to look stupid by web designers.  These are people we share our profession with.  Yet we see it all the time – images stolen from other websites, reused again and again after downloads from libraries… and it stinks.  I’m getting fed up of amateur designers who apart from generally designing poorly performing, slow and unusable sites, are also potentially getting their clients into a lot of trouble.

So these amateurs are busy cheapening the work we do by undercutting the true professionals, they’re damaging our reputations (could we be thought of like many back street mechanics?) and they’re encouraging many clients to DIY instead – something that could still cost them dearly in lost business, hassle and time.

Rant over!  Next I want to find out who Britain’s best web designer could be.  I’d like to hope it’s us!