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Old 02-05-2016
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Default Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

I started a new shop about a month ago and got 50 listings up and got two emails from etsy with the title "Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement". Apparently these guys were searching for titles containing the infringing trademarks and two were filed and the listings were removed - I noticed putting the words "inspired" in the title did not help one iota. The actual person doing the filing wasn't listed in the notices, and I'm assuming they were filed by the same person/program as both notices came into my email box at the exact same time, despite the trademarks belonging to two separate companies.

Reading online and finding that etsy has an unofficial "Three strikes and you're out!" policy, I essentially deactivated the shop as I can't risk my other longstanding accounts on there that have, so far, been unscathed.

So, couple of questions.

How do you find out if you're actually using a licensed trademark? Is there a trademark database I can programmatically check my titles against? I know some people are going to say "Use common sense", but there are common single words that I'm pretty sure aren't trademarked (Like "peanuts"), but could be useful in helping the searcher find what they're looking for, and it'd be nice to determine if my titles are 'safe'. Apparently one of the trademarks was licensed just this year, while it would've been safe to use 3 years ago, so someway to check an upto date trademark database to keep my titles 'safe' yet 'useful' would be pretty awesome.

Also, is there a scalable way to go etsy stealth? It seems that etsy requires SSN's from every user (And I doubt EINs would work), so it'd seem that you'd be limited by how many SSNs you had on hand. And, using other people's SSNs seems like it'd be illegal. (Assuming they pressed charges.)

I know that it seems like you can have upto 3 shops for one person, but any beyond that would seem to trigger manual review, which one would probably minimize if trying to escape etsy's radar.

Last edited by swbluto; 02-05-2016 at 02:37 AM.
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Old 02-05-2016
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

Quote:
Originally Posted by swbluto View Post
I started a new shop about a month ago and got 50 listings up and got two emails from etsy with the title "Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement". Apparently these guys were searching for titles containing the infringing trademarks and two were filed and the listings were removed - I noticed putting the words "inspired" in the title did not help one iota. The actual person doing the filing wasn't listed in the notices, and I'm assuming they were filed by the same person/program as both notices came into my email box at the exact same time, despite the trademarks belonging to two separate companies.

Reading online and finding that etsy has an unofficial "Three strikes and you're out!" policy, I essentially deactivated the shop as I can't risk my other longstanding accounts on there that have, so far, been unscathed.

So, couple of questions.

How do you find out if you're actually using a licensed trademark? Is there a trademark database I can programmatically check my titles against? I know some people are going to say "Use common sense", but there are common single words that I'm pretty sure aren't trademarked (Like "peanuts"), but could be useful in helping the searcher find what they're looking for, and it'd be nice to determine if my titles are 'safe'. Apparently one of the trademarks was licensed just this year, while it would've been safe to use 3 years ago, so someway to check an upto date trademark database to keep my titles 'safe' yet 'useful' would be pretty awesome.

Also, is there a scalable way to go etsy stealth? It seems that etsy requires SSN's from every user (And I doubt EINs would work), so it'd seem that you'd be limited by how many SSNs you had on hand. And, using other people's SSNs seems like it'd be illegal.

I know that it seems like you can have upto 3 shops for one person, but any beyond that would seem to trigger manual review, which one would probably minimize if trying to escape etsy's radar.
In my humble opinions ( I have had 3 shops down from similar situation but I got back up), stay away from what you are selling right now. Since it's much harder to get back on now. The simplest way is to not use those trademark words in the listing titles becuase they will get back and haunt you until you vanish. Only use trademark for tags, not for title and use Ad, that will get your listing appear in search without using trademark in titles.
But be careful, some evils will get you no matter what. I have 2 evil companies that accused me of using TM even though I did not have them in my titles at all. And e-ictchy did not even care to look. They took my listings off and after a few strikes, my shops got shut down.
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

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Originally Posted by etsyrefugive View Post
In my humble opinions ( I have had 3 shops down from similar situation but I got back up), stay away from what you are selling right now. Since it's much harder to get back on now. The simplest way is to not use those trademark words in the listing titles becuase they will get back and haunt you until you vanish. Only use trademark for tags, not for title and use Ad, that will get your listing appear in search without using trademark in titles.
But be careful, some evils will get you no matter what. I have 2 evil companies that accused me of using TM even though I did not have them in my titles at all. And e-ictchy did not even care to look. They took my listings off and after a few strikes, my shops got shut down.
I'm assuming they're using a program to do the filings, given how they were all filed in the same minute by (purportedly) different companies (Btw, if you're curious, Fox Networks and Zenimax Inc.), and if that's true, I doubt that using tags only is going to save your ass, as I'm assuming that all listings that show in the search get filed against. The words that got me targeted were highly specific (i.e., "Nuka Cola"), not something that joe scmoe tablecloths would show up for.

However... I just noticed that the one seller that had an identical item didn't get filed against, making me think he was involved in the filings considering he just came back from vacation today. I'm not sure how, exactly, he could have been involved but... the timing is impeccable.

Now, looking at all the other offenders on there for the exact same keyword that apparently didn't get affected, I guess I must've just "got lucky" somehow.

Last edited by swbluto; 02-05-2016 at 03:21 AM.
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

I found out that Vault Network, the maker of Fallout, was previously owned by Fox Network so I have a feeling that the lawyer who works for Fox still protects Vault Network's assets, which is just under Bethesda/Zenimax ownership now. So, both notices probably essentially came from Fox's lawyers.

It'd be nice if there was an easy way to figure out if a certain property ever belonged to Fox Networks, past or present. Might do a lot in the way of prevention.

Now I'm wondering if "Moulin Rouge", which affected that other etsy jewelry shop online, is owned by Fox? Seems like Fox might be the common wellspring of misery. I drove by Fox's little headquarters in Atlanta once, and I must've admit, there was something peculiar about the property. It was a mansion sitting oh so properly on the hill in the middle of the city in the distance, and something about it just looked too perfect, like in an evil kind of way. That, and my CDC visit there, was pretty evil. I swear parts of the city has an underlying evil hidden by a veneer of superficial perfection.

Hey, what do you know (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moulin_Rouge!):

"Distributed by 20th Century Fox"

Lesson learned, watch out for what might be Fox's intellectual property (Or once was).

Last edited by swbluto; 02-05-2016 at 04:52 AM.
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Old 02-05-2016
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

playing with trad.emark.s like hot fire. bang bang
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

Actually, what does Fox Networks have to do with Fallout (i.e., Zenimax / Bethesda works)? I'm trying to find a hard connection, and I can't seem to find any. It looks like Fox used to own the "Vault Network", but according to the wikipedia for it,

Quote:
The Vault Network began with the creation of the Ultima Online Vault in 1995. When EverQuest and Asheron's Call were announced to be released in 1999, Vaults were created for them as well. Around this time, the existing Vaults were merged with the Snowball Network, better known by its later moniker, IGN.

As new online games and MMORPGs are created or announced, respective vaults and message boards are created if the game is popular enough to warrant the resources. As of December 2007, there are over 20 Vaults and forums exist for over 70 games. Vaults include those for games such as World of Warcraft, Warhammer Online: Age of Reckoning, Final Fantasy XI, EverQuest II, Lineage and Lineage II, Guild Wars, Star Wars Galaxies, Dark Age of Camelot and many more
It doesn't appear to have anything to do with Fallout. What does Fox Networks have to do with Zenimax, exactly? Is the same lawyer representing all these different companies' interests?

I doubt that the infringement was filed by a disinterested third party, as the Fox networks brand did the proper legal research (Cited trademark numbers and the such). However, Zenimax didn't file any particular numbers, instead citing a general DMCA 'copyright issue' without citing a trademark or other identifying numbers. (Even though, purportedly, they filed for a trademark on "nuka cola" this year.)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ZeniMax_Media

Still don't see a connection to Fox Networks, even after looking through the corporate affiliations with the "Board of Directors" and "Business advisory board". I guess I'm to conclude there's a single unknown lawyer/group out there whose (Probably auto-)filing all these infringement notices on the behalf of these various, unrelated companies. In essence, it's a minefield.

Last edited by swbluto; 02-05-2016 at 11:34 AM.
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

Wait, I'm starting to think I've found the perpetrator.

Ernest Del - Wikiwand

Quote:
Ernest Del or Ernie Del is an American entertainment attorney. Currently Del is the president of ZeniMax Media and has held that position since 1999.[1] Del also serves as a director of Delivery Agent[2] and Silver Eagle Acquisition Corporation.[3]
Legacy

Del has been regarded as one of the most influential and respected figures in entertainment law. He has been called a power lawyer by The Hollywood Reporter in 2009 and 2010 lists. He is best known for helping top executive talent climb the ladder. His clients include top talent and executives at major television networks, studios and emerging media companies worldwide.[4]

Examples of his clients include Fox's former executive and current CEO of Tribune Company, Peter Liguori, Kevin Reilly(Chairman of Entertainment for the Fox Broadcasting Company), Former CW executive Dawn Ostroff, 20th TV's Dana Walden, Lionsgate CEO Jon Feltheimer, former Sony TV and Artists Television Group executive Eric Tannenbaum (Two and a Half Men), former The WB Television Network network president David Janollari, Leslie Moonves[5] (president and CEO, CBS Corporation), actor-producer Paul Reiser, Stuart Bloomberg the former chairman of ABC Entertainment, Sarah Timberman, Stu Bloomberg, Bob Greenblatt (chairman of NBC Entertainment). Other clients include people on the ZeniMax Media directors and advisory board as well as many others.

Del has helped Harry E. Sloan to rebuild MGM, when Sloan was still chairman and CEO there. He also repped Providence Equity Partners in the creation of Hulu, as well as advising Bethesda Softworks.


So he represents interests like...

Zenimax
Bethesda Softworks
Fox Networks
WB Television Network
ABC Entertainment
NBC Entertainment
MGM

I'm assuming that this guy is on the look out for Zenimax IP on ebay and etsy, and files on the behalf of the interests of these other guys once he finds a target. It also seems like someone is actively looking for Fox Network violations (Probably this guy), given that casual use of 'Moulin Rouge' in the title got a jewelry store kicked off.

So..........

Known High risk brands
----------------
Zenimax/Bethesda works (Fallout, Elder Scrolls, Doom, Quake, etc.)
Fox Networks (A bunch of different movies and shows)

All the others in the list are of unknown practical risk.

Last edited by swbluto; 02-05-2016 at 12:07 PM.
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Old 02-05-2016
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

Make you life easy, don't make counterfeit products using trademarked brands? If you know the brand you best be damn sure they have trademarks and copyrights. Only way you steer clear is obvious parody, and even that isn't a clear cut issue.
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

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Originally Posted by Gladiator View Post
Make you life easy, don't make counterfeit products using trademarked brands?
It'd be counterfeit if you're trying to pass it off like it came from the company. Using the words "inspired" and "I make it at home" seems like it's pretty clear it's not coming from the company, so this is a simple "It looks like a character/logo/icon from my brand, hey, back off." kind of issue, which was the case with Zenimax's nuka cola.

The trademark is simply using words from the brand that have been trademarked and, yep, you can't really avoid those issues unless you simply don't use the trademarked words/phrases. I'm thinking more careful wording of the titles with more generic words and less brand specific words would probably help mitigate identification risk, in addition to simply avoiding Zenimax/Fox brands. That particular listing came from a product I made at the custom request for someone else, so I should have been more careful in making it publicly available but I didn't know who the adversaries were, exactly. Now I know (At least some of them).

Last edited by swbluto; 02-05-2016 at 03:16 PM.
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

I scoured the internets, and compiled this list of known past pursuers on etsy. Seems like this issue was more extensive than I first imagined.

Copyright Infringement-Why Etsy will Shut your Shop Down « Beth Picard
https://www.reddit.com/r/Etsy/commen...ice_copyright/
https://rusetsy.wordpress.com/2013/1...-infringement/
Etsy: The Fuzzy Line of Creativity and Trademark/Copyright Infringement | Twilight Lexicon

Known infringement pursuers
----------(bethipcard)-------------
Chanel
Tiffany (Using phrases like "Tiffany blue")
Talyor Swift (Used "Country girly" in the title, and also "Country boy")
Collegiate Licensing Company (words like “Roll Tide” and even “Go Tigers”)
John Deere
Mattel (Barbie)
(Disney, purportedly in the past? Anecdotal.)
Warner Bros (Lord of the rings)
Hershey
(Didn't name names, but possibly Frozen and Spiderman? Read between the lines.)
NCAA collegiate trademark management company
AMC (Someone sent their "Team Daryl" product to AMC. Also, another person got pinged for "Dixon Crossbow Academy")
Gerber (Used 'onesie' in the title)
Sanrio ("Hello Kitty")
----(reddit)-------
Lionsgate (Hunger games)
Valve (Portal)
Namco (Pacman and Pacman Ghost)
(Recommended places to sell art, Storenvy or DeviantArt)
------rusetsy.wordpress.com-----
Fox Entertainment (Title used "Moulin Rouge")
------twilightlexicon.com--------
Summit ("twilight" in the title)

(Other recommended places, Cafepress. Artfire.)
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

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Originally Posted by swbluto View Post
It'd be counterfeit if you're trying to pass it off like it came from the company. Using the words "inspired" and "I make it at home" seems like it's pretty clear it's not coming from the company, so this is a simple "It looks like a character/logo/icon from my brand, hey, back off." kind of issue, which was the case with Zenimax's nuka cola.

The trademark is simply using words from the brand that have been trademarked and, yep, you can't really avoid those issues unless you simply don't use the trademarked words/phrases. I'm thinking more careful wording of the titles with more generic words and less brand specific words would probably help mitigate identification risk, in addition to simply avoiding Zenimax/Fox brands. That particular listing came from a product I made at the custom request for someone else, so I should have been more careful in making it publicly available but I didn't know who the adversaries were, exactly. Now I know (At least some of them).
I seriously think you need to talk to an attorney if you even believe a tenth of what you just said because it's going to come back and bite you.
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

I admire your dedication and perseverance swbluto. I'm sorry I don't have anything to contribute to the thread, but I learned a lot reading your research!
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Old 02-05-2016
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

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Originally Posted by Gladiator View Post
I seriously think you need to talk to an attorney if you even believe a tenth of what you just said because it's going to come back and bite you.
I seriously doubt this guy will be bitten by anything. I don't understand your reasoning. OP seems intelligent
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

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I seriously doubt this guy will be bitten by anything. I don't understand your reasoning. OP seems intelligent
They honestly think using phrases and disclaimers protects them against claims and noticing that it was made at home makes it dandy. That's stupid and honestly partly why Etsy has made it so difficult to get back on. Looking at their forums these same stupid comments are made on a regular basis. "If I put a mickey mouse like image made using freezer paper on a shirt and put inspired by am I violating copyright?" ....
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

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Originally Posted by Gladiator View Post
I seriously think you need to talk to an attorney if you even believe a tenth of what you just said because it's going to come back and bite you.
I didn't say it wasn't a copyright issue... Copyrights are a civil issue(Read lawsuits) while counterfeits (Pretending the goods came from the designer/manufacturer, such as ⊗⊗⊗⊗ Chinese bags passed off as Gucci on eBay) are a federal crime. The major difference is one of fraud, that is, the intent to deceive. No one is deceiving anybody by saying "it's inspired by" and "I make it at home"; if one were to claim it's an authentic good from the IP owner, now that'd be a counterfeit/federal issue.

Last edited by swbluto; 02-05-2016 at 06:04 PM.
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

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Originally Posted by swbluto View Post
I didn't say it wasn't a copyright issue...
You're clearly making sells off someones brand and aren't paying them and are looking for ways around it. This isn't what this forum is for.
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

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You're clearly making sells off someones brand and aren't paying them and are looking for ways around it. This isn't what this forum is for.
No, that's completely wrong. I'm not making videogames.
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No, that's completely wrong. I'm not making videogames.
Yeah, cause video game companies don't make other products nowadays?

Good luck keeping stores with your inert thinking.
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Old 02-05-2016
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

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You're clearly making sells off someones brand and aren't paying them and are looking for ways around it. This isn't what this forum is for.
You are ignoring OP's problem and are attacking him/her instead. That's not what this forum is about.

What's the point of haggling people on the internet?
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

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You are ignoring OP's problem and are attacking him/her instead. That's not what this forum is about.

What's the point of haggling people on the internet?
I've been on here going on six years and it's disheartening to read posts asking how to use other peoples works or trademarks/copyrights to drive sales. This forum has never been about helping sell "bad" products.

As someone who regularly licenses their work reading these posts is getting tiresome. Make your own original stuff or become a reseller. I'm not the only one having issues with this as others have been messaging me privately about the matter and I felt it was time to speak up about this.

If you sell "bad" products, we aren't going to help you.
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

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I've been on here going on six years and it's disheartening to read posts asking how to use other peoples works or trademarks/copyrights to drive sales. This forum has never been about helping sell "bad" products.

As someone who regularly licenses their work reading these posts is getting tiresome. Make your own original stuff or become a reseller. I'm not the only one having issues with this as others have been messaging me privately about the matter and I felt it was time to speak up about this.

If you sell "bad" products, we aren't going to help you.
I make my own products, and in no way use any of the work created by the original owner. That's not the issue, the issue is using the names of related products in the title to draw buyers and getting some kind of trademark violation for it filed through Etsy. That's clearly different than what you're thinking and you 'speaking out about it' is only tilting at windmills. I obviously don't need your help as I'm clearly figuring this out through experience. Etsy's second chances allows smart guys like me to persist and succeed by learning to adapt to newly discovered challenges in the environment. That is unlike ebay, which will pull the rug out from underneath you without even a single warning. (Why I'm here to begin with and no way was that related to trademarks.)

Last edited by swbluto; 02-05-2016 at 06:47 PM.
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Default Re: Etsy's Notice of Intellectual Property Infringement

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I make my own products, and in no way use any of the work created by the original owner. That's not the issue, the issue is using the names of related products in the title to draw buyers and getting some kind of trademark violation for it filed through Etsy. That's clearly different than what you're thinking and you 'speaking out about it' is only tilting at windmills. I obviously don't need your help as I'm clearly figuring this out through experience. Etsy's second chances allows smart guys like me to persist and succeed by learning to adapt to newly discovered challenges in the environment. That is unlike ebay, which will pull the rug out from underneath you without even a single warning. (Why I'm here to begin with and no way was that related to trademarks.)
http://www.insidecounsel.com/2011/11...k-in-marketing

I seriously, again, advise you seek counsel.
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