Kimono from the new Bat Norton collection with a stolen Ooqza print / Source: @batnorton
The famous St. Petersburg brand of youth clothing Bat Norton illegally used the print of the Moscow tattoo artist Valeria Volokhova (aka Ooqza) in its new collection, thereby violating her copyright.
Valeria posted an image on her instagram, which shows which tattoo Bat Norton's designers took a copy of. The tattoo artist made this tattoo back in 2018, and of course, she was incredibly offended by such a shameless, and most importantly, illegal act of a big company. In addition, Valeria has been preparing her own clothing collection, which is about to go on sale.
The tattoo artist said that she is going to sue Bat Norton brand for theft of intellectual property. At the moment, the company reacted rather predictably to a giant flurry of indignation from colleagues and fans of Valeria's work: comments on brand profiles are closed, and company representatives contacted the tattoo artist and offered as compensation only 30 000 Russian rubles (about €350) of a deposit for the purchase of their clothes. “So they offer me to wear their kimono with my own print? It turns out like this! ”, - the artist shared with subscribers.
«No one from the company has ever written to me asking for permission to use my intellectual property, and I found out about the use quite by accident. Unfortunately, business in Russia is often conducted without respect for the work of the artist. This is a shame for the company! They cash in on other people's art, making a profit from the sale of my original sketch. I will do my best for as many people as possible to know about this, and I want this case to be an example for unscrupulous companies that do not respect the artist's work,», — said the artist.
Just a few weeks before this news, we published an interview with Valeria, in which we, among other things, talked about the tattoo artist's attitude to copying works by other artists and copyright.
«I just found it on the Internet, you posted it yourself, so you allowed everyone to use the sketch ”is the most common excuse. Alas, no, it doesn't work that way. I always say that the picture appeared on the Internet for a reason, and everything that is posted there has an author, and at the same time copyrights, » - said Valeria in the interview.
This, in turn, stops the financial development of the art industry - because not the authors have benefit from the work, but individuals or legal entities that have nothing to do with the fine arts.
At the same time, it is important to understand that the author (the person who created the work) has the opportunity to make money on his art, including through the transfer of copyright to the company, which, as in this case, will use it to create clothing, advertising, interior etc.
This can be done by alienating copyright in favor of another person, for example, on the basis of an agreement on the alienation of exclusive rights, a license agreement, etc. It is with such requests that proposals should come to artists about the use of their works, and the author decides whether he is ready to do it or not. Let's hope that this story will serve as a lesson for other entrepreneurs and others even bigger brands.
Dear artists and tattoo artists, have you found yourself in similar situations when your prints and sketches were used commercially without your knowledge? We would be grateful if you share your story with us so that as many people as possible learn about copyright infringement and intellectual property theft. Tell your story by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org