Hope everyone and everypiggy enjoyed a safe and tasty Halloween.
When I first created this blog, my goal was not only to share cute photos and pig stories but also to share care tips, promote guinea pig welfare, and adoption.
Last week, I was surprised to discover that the photo of my little Peaches above was being widely circulated throughout the Facebook guinea pig community. While I was thrilled to see that people enjoyed the photo, I saw that the individual who posted it to their newly launched fan page did not link back to or give credit to the blog it originated from (first published here). This was also the case for several other photos from my previous posts that they took without permission. Since much of the time this oversight is easily remedied, I sent a quick message to the individual letting them know that while I was happy they liked my photos, they needed to source or give credit when republishing them.
In the meantime, the image went viral. To my dismay, the individual ignored me and refused to acknowledge that the photos were taken from my site. They proceeded to take an additional photo of Poof from Halloween 2011, continued taking credit, and acting as if the photos were their own. Like many in the creative industry, I am glad whenever people enjoy something enough to share it with others - but when someone uses stolen content for the sole purpose of gaining popularity, especially while doling out questionable care advice.. that I am not okay with.
In today's technologically saturated society many writers, artists, and musicians struggle with intellectual property issues. Photographers both professional and hobbyist maintain a tricky balance between sharing their work and marring the photo with an unsightly watermark. Debates about appropriate watermarking techniques, content, location and visibility can become quite heated. In the past I have stuck with a simple transparent title name so as not to detract from the lovely piggies themselves. Upon seeing how upset I was at the situation, my partner was so thoughtful as to buy and set up the domain name as a surprise gift. As a response to recent events all photos will be clearly marked with the new lengthy and unfortunately prominent moniker.
Moving on, the piggies now have their own domain name. That's the silver lining. Thank you to anyone who takes the time to read this, I am sorry to bring up such negativity to detract from the main focus. Now, back to our regularly scheduled programming of cavy-centric posts!