More on the copyright story

Since posting our story about the Sunshine Coast Creative Alliance using our image without permission and removing our watermark, there has been some media attention generated, mainly due to the large amount of public interest and support shown in social media. Scene Magazine have published the story as has ABC Local Radio and the Fight For Copyright group has also published the story. To be honest, I was overwhelmed and am not sure just how far this story has spread. I am deeply humbled by the amount of support shown, including offers of financial assistance (even from overseas) should we need to take this to the Supreme Court.

With such a level of interest generated, the SCCA President, Mr Phil Smith, finally contacted me to request a “without prejudice” meeting to discuss the issue. Not bad I guess when we first contacted them to resolve this matter back in June of this year! As I reported in our earlier post, they chose to ignore us completely until a solicitors letter landed on their desk, at which point they finally responded SCCA_Response_to_Law_Let, claiming technical difficulties prevented both the SCCA and their President (at the time of the copyright infringement), Ms Angie Dunbavan, from receiving our emails over a six week period. They further claimed they thought the issue had been resolved.

Now that Scene Magazine and the ABC Local have run stories, and with an overwhelming show of support from other artists, photographers and the general public, the SCCA have taken to the blogosphere with their own, somewhat skewed, version of events.

They are claiming we have supported personal attacks on members of the SCCA. I’m not sure how they have managed to base this allegation but at no point have we made, nor have we supported “personal attacks” against member os the SCCA. Indeed, we have NAMED members of the SCCA Board but as office bearers of a public body, they can hardly expect to hide behind the SCCA name.

I do not want to play tit-for-tat in this blog but I do need to assure our supporters that the information published in the SCCA blog is far from accurate. Our blog post was factual, accurate and backed up by documentation to prove our position. No “he said – she said” stories.

They claim the first correspondence received from me was the registered letter I sent some six weeks (and three emails) in to the saga. Those emails were sent to multiple recipients, both the official SCCA email address as well as the business email address of the then President. We even cc’d a Sunshine Coast Regional Councillor who managed to respond.

They further claim that I was contacted by phone and the matter had been resolved. No such contact had taken place. NONE!

Then they claim that sometime after July 22 they attempted to contact me. They certainly did not. As you will have read in my previous post, SCCA President, Ms Dunbavan, tried to call my partner, Kristen, who was unable to take a call at the time. I returned that call the following day but was faced with her message system. I identified myself, left my number and asked that Ms Dunbavan call me back. She never did. No SCCA member called us back until some two weeks later when Ms Dunbavan again called Kristens phone, not our work phone and certainly not my phone. This time she left a message stating ‘you do know we had copyright permission’. By this time we had already engaged a solicitor so we didn’t return her call.

Now the SCCA also are suggesting they have spent the week trying to communicate with us and they we only responded on Wednesday, 24 September. Again, this is an interesting interpretation of events. On Monday, after the weekend of social media attention, the new SCCA President, Mr Phil Smith, phoned me and we spoke about the matter. Mr Smith suggested a meeting to further discuss this matter and that he would email me some details. He did. We immediately sought legal advice and therefore did not respond to Mr Smiths email until Wednesday. I now await his further response.

But in the meantime, the SCCA have chosen to also go on the attack, alleging that I have supported personal attacks on SCCA members. I wonder if the SCCA Board needs to meet again to discuss the content of their own blog?

Stay tuned…

2 comments to “More on the copyright story”

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  1. Having just read the SCCA’s blog it now seems that the only thing the Creative Alliance is actually creative with is the truth!

    Furthermore, they now seek to ruin another amazingly creative artist by naming and blaming her, when there was no apparent need to do so.

    My feelings go out to you Marc & Kristen and also to your client. You have every reason to pursue this issue until it is resolved positively for you!

  2. From their blog, it seems they have a good grasp of copywriting ….. Now they need a good grasp of copyright! Hang in there Marc x

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