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This morning I received an e-mail from one of our customers who was looking through the 'New In' section of the ASOS website when a Russian Doll ring caught her attention which looked VERY similar to our design. My heart sunk as I clicked on the link to discover it really is a blatant horrendous cheap rip off of our original artwork! The design and even the wording are copied, we have been selling "I'm Cute" Russian Doll necklaces on the Hannah Zakari website since September 2008. We originally designed the Russian Doll jewellery in August 2008 for a Viktor & Rolf "Dolls Night Out" party held at the Barbican. We took inspiration from trips to a Russian Tearooms in Primrose Hill and a houseboat community in Victoria Park. We then spent a long time lovingly drawing our own Russian Doll design. I feel so angry about this! Surely a *huge* company like ASOS have a large in-house design team earning big bucks to create their own brand products - why copy designs by small independent designers? It's so, so lazy. ASOS you suck! You've left us with no option but to name and shame you but do you actually care?
I hope there is a way to make them care, this is atrocious.
If anything it has reminded me that I really wanted to buy one of your necklaces. A new order is coming your way! Take that asos.
Apparently big companies actually pay people to surf the net finding designs that they can copy. It saves them time and money..... I'm so sorry it has happened to you. I know someone who has had a similar problem with another company.
Surely you can sue them?? That's so shitty. I'm going to email them and boycott until they answer you. That's just not on.
That's awful, they haven't even tried to be subtle about it, it's bare-faced thievery! The only difference is their version looks cheap and tacky. Typical ASOS.
We're definitely going to contact ASOS, we really don't want them to get away with it! It's so infuriating... will let you all know what happens!
I am so sorry to hear this has happened. I've always feared that bigger companies would reproduce smaller designers' stuff like this - as a jewellery maker and seller myself I haven't had it happen to me yet. I'm a HUGE LLROK fan and the fact that not everyone has your pieces is the appeal - quirk ROCKS! Keep your sparkly chin up xxx
Your work is so awesome and this ASOS rip off just looks so cheap. It's horrible when big companies do this to small businesses and expect to get away with it...I hope you manage to get some response out of ASOS. Cease and desist!
topshop does it too! http://www.madebywhite.com/blog/2010/01/topshop-ripoff-they-have-copied-our-brooch/
You must be able to sue them, how shameful. It's one thing to make cheaper versions of couture/designer (i.e. unaffordable) items, but this is quite another, the fiends.
I just had a look on ASOS to see for myself and they've also ripped off a ring design from another independent jewellery store that I use and love. I'm so surprised that not only that they can do this but that, as such a large and well regarded company they don't mind being seen to be shamelessly ripping off a small independent companies designs.
I hope you get a good result when you contact them, good luck!
Go kick their butts! They definitely deserve it!! Good luck with it (even though it shouldn't even be something you have to do!!)
Oh my goodness. This is absolutely terrible and must infringe on your rights as designers. I sincerely hope that ASOS apologise for their blatant thieving and stop selling these wares immediately until permission/payment is agreed. Shame on them, I'm disgusted.
It is shocking. I hope you can take legal action or create a big stinky press splash. . . (what about the guardian?)
It's good news... just one hour after publishing this blog post and tweeting about it, ASOS have removed the ring from their website! We're still going to pursue the fact that it happened in the first place. Luckily, Sam took a screenshot of their cheap copy before it mysteriously disappeared. I've uploaded a snap of it here if you so wish to check it out - http://www.twitpic.com/y72va
This, unfortunately, is a very common occurrence not only among independent designers but also jewellery component wholesalers with people taking designs and copying them with cheaper material. Unfortunately, with the internet this is more widespread than let's say 15 years ago, and unless you have a great legal team to battle the corporate baddies, there is not much that can be done. Having said that, I think you should definitely try and do your best. Topshop, Forever21 and all of these cheap mass retailers copy not only small but big time designers. Yes they get in trouble, but the amount of $ they make off these copies more than covers their legal fees, IF and when they caught. It's shameful and your design is definitely WAY better. It's very sad that these big companies need to step on the talented in order to make a buck - but I feel thats how the world turns nowadays - dog eat dog.
Good luck with it though, no one should get away with this!
I couldn't believe it when I discovered it earlier. It's just so blatantly a copy its ridiculous! I'm glad they have removed it but I will still send them an email to say I noticed and how angry I was as a loving customer of LLROK. Topshop copied a brooch from Made by White too. Evil companies. They make enough money as it is without ripping off designs from independent businesses.
Thanks for bringing it to our attention Lucy, without your e-mail to us this morning they'd still be profiting from their cheapola rip off! Hurrah! x
Glad to hear they have removed it, hope you get somewhere when you contact them.
This is horrible and the fact they have removed it just says it all.
That's great news that they acted so quickly although as I said before, I'd be very surprised if they weren't aware of your design before adding that awful copy to their website yet still decided to go ahead and sell it = not cool.
I'm composing an email to them but this changes things a little so I'll be starting from scratch again!
They are so cheeky! I hope something comes of it xo
This is an outrage!!! I'm am going to do what I do best and send an angry email!
I saw this necklace before i read this when my friend told me she'd found a ring that looked just like my necklace apart from tackier. It's really wrong that the big name brands steal designs from small companies anyway at least they have got rid of it now .
Absolutely shocking, this is the second instance of this type of thing I've read about in 2 days. Makes me wonder about the people who produce the artwork for these big companies, who know they are copying someones original design!
This kind of thing makes me so angry. It has happened to me with a T-shirt design before, it's really frustrating.
The designers at ASOS are probably art school dropouts with no imagination who trawl the net looking for designs to steal. Really hope you can get it sorted out, you've all worked hard for a long time, you don't deserve this.
How disgusting that they would do this, definitely contact them, you would definitely have a claim. I'm so sorry this has happened to you :(
I always wonder whether this is somebody in the inhouse design team doing it without letting anybody know or whether the company actually encourages this. :-/
I can not beleive it and I have to say I've not ever used ASOS but I did notice a few in common retail shops like topshop. Its such as shame! I'd only buy from the artists themselves.
Arseholes! Glad they have taken it off sale!
Just tweeted about this, I think people deserve to know about large companies stealing your lovely work! Good on you for naming and shaming, can't believe they have taken it down!
I definitely won't be shopping at ASOS again. I own some of your personalised necklaces and it would be a shame to see someone else with a cheap rip off of your unique (or so I thought) jewellery.
Good luck with pursuing this...
What makes me so angry about this is the lack of any real culpability that you are able to pin on them. If a writer plagiarizes another writer's work, they can be taken to court and made to sign over the rights and any profits they may have made from the stolen work. Stealing from the imagination of a designer is just as bad as stealing from a writer!
To the creators of that lovely original - please don't think for a second you don't have (C) on that design. It varies by country, but largely, where creative input and originality can be demonstrated (e.g. you can't (C) a heart shape) you *automatically* own the IP and copyright for that design (some places I think you have to register it, but it's still your intelectual property). This seems to happen a lot. Speak up! Don't get trodden on. Inform ASOS of their (C) breach and keep chasing up. Do you have a 'citizen's advice beuraeu' or equivalent?
What a shame, it is such a poor quality copy too, TOPSHOP/DCK concessions did something very similar to my work: http://jewelsinthewoods.blogspot.com/2010/02/i-dont-work-for-topshop.html
it is all rather depressing, since they get away with it so easily.
you can stop them selling the copies but that is about it...