• Report: #706444
Complaint Review:

Getty Images Inc.

  • Submitted: Tue, March 15, 2011
  • Updated: Tue, March 15, 2011

  • Reported By: Deb — Northampton Pennsylvania United States of America
Getty Images Inc.
601 North Street Seattle, Washington United States of America

Getty Images Inc. SCAM ARTISTS who are sending PHONEY Demand Letters to Legitimate Businesses - Seattle, Washington

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I have taken an image from wallpaperden.com This website company offers FREE images on their website. Getty Images sent us a VERY long and official letter, by mail demanding $895.00 for use of that image that is listed on the wallpaperden.com website as a free image with unknown author.

We actually thought that we had to comply and removed the free image that we added our company logo to for our website. I am the web desinger and I removed the image within 10 minutes of reading their SCAM Letter. When I called to apologize for using the image they said that it did not matter, we still owed them $895.00. The second day we followed up with another phone call after talking to our lawyers, who assured us that this was probably a scam. I spoke to a Simon, after explaining that we called our lawyers, he still insisted that our lawyers did not know what they were talking about and that we were still responsible. I spoke to 2 women and 1 man at this company. They were all equally very convincing with their language, which made this sound so official. Simon insisted, " So you believe that just because it says free it is? After getting off the phone the first time, I checked out the company with the BBB. I came upon this Rip-off website with the Report that Getty Images sends 1000s of demand letters to unsuspecting consumers. Simon also stated, "So you believe this because it's online? He also slipped and said that the image cost is $500.00/year, I asked him why then were they demanding $895.00? With a very quick comeback he said for costs!!!

I as an honest person have no idea how you bunch of losers live with yourself!?! What your doing is WRONG ... what a way to make a living!!! Why don't all of you just go into robbery...yeah just break into people's homes and take their belongings...better yet take the food out of babies mouths!!! WHAT A BUNCH OF BOTTOM FEEDING A--HOLES!!!

We reported this to the Seattle Washington Police Department at their online website and got a Thank You reply from Chief John Diaz...we are also going to report this company to the Attorney Generals Office and the FBI (Fraudulent Internet Companies). I truly hope that all who are working for this SCAMMING Company get fined, arrested and the company gets shut down for good. It looks like they have been pulling this SCAM since 2008...My question is HOW IS THIS LEGAL and HOW ARE THEY ALLOWED to get away with this garbage!?!

As this website says DO NOT RESPOND to any Demand letters you receive from Getty Images. 

From: David Wojtczak David.Wojtczak@gettyimages.com
Date: Mar 15, 2011 4:07 PM

You are welcome to report this issue to any agency that you see fit.  We will respond accordingly.  Since you appear to be basing your position on random internet searches, I would suggest that you first review the matter with someone who is familiar with copyright law.  If an image is displayed on a commercial website without permission from the copyright owner, that use constitutes copyright infringement.  Whether or not the end user is aware is not relevant.  Whether or not the designer assumed sourcing content via Yahoo searches was appropriate is also not relevant.  
If BLOCKED obtained this photo via a “free” photo search on Yahoo, it is worth pointing out that there is a warning on Yahoo that informs the user that this image “may be subject to copyright”.  This is copied below for your reference:  
It is also worth pointing out that the use that was identified was not a personal/non-commercial wallpaper use, rather, it was a design element use on a commercial website.  My suggestion at this point is to reach out to the party where this image was sourced from since Getty Images intends to continue pursuit of this matter.  We are researching the wallpaper website, however, this is separate from our infringement claim with BLOCKED.  Further, if any other images have been obtained via Google or Yahoo search engine results, you may want to consider proactively removing such content since there may be exposure to additional infringing uses. 
Please contact me directly if you have any further questions.  Thank you for your time.
Best Regards,
Dave Wojtczak
Supervisor, Copyright Compliance
Getty Images
Getty Images Headquarters
601 North 34th Street
Seattle, WA 98103 USA
Phone: 1.206.925.6796
Fax: 1.206.925.5001He does not even address the fact that the subject line VERY INTERESTING SITE is because we found them on RIP-OFF Report.com


This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 03/15/2011 04:54 PM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/getty-images-inc/seattle-washington-98103/getty-images-inc-scam-artists-who-are-sending-phoney-demand-letters-to-legitimate-busine-706444. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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