Larry's Orchids on eBay

Discussion in 'Orchid Vendor Sales' started by SlipperFan, Oct 26, 2006.

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  1. Oct 26, 2006 #1

    SlipperFan

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    One of my slipper friends alerted me the other day that one of my photos was posted on an eBay site:
    http://cgi.ebay.com/Phragmipedium-W...ryZ42218QQssPageNameZWDVWQQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem
    When I saw it, I knew that someone from that company had taken it from the Porter's Orchids site, where I am the Webmaster and do nearly all the photography. I emailed Larry's Orchids, telling them that although I had given permission for that photo to be displayed on certain sites (e.g., slipperorchids.info), theirs was not one of them. I asked them to either take off the photo or pay me for it's commercial use.
    They wrote back saying that the photo would be taken off within 24 hours. Their webmaster wrote back at the same time saying it would be taken off within the hour.
    After 24 hours, and the photo was still up, I wrote to them again, stating that I was not pleased. I also mentioned that I'm now on our orchid society's Board of Directors, and that maybe the Board would like to know this about one of their proposed vendors for our February show. I also mentioned that people on the slipper forums have expressed displeasure with such antics on other eBay sites.
    Larry wrote back and accused me of blackmail, and said he wanted to be placed on the Board's agenda. I gave him the names and emails of all the board members and when our next meeting would be. I also told him that he could call it blackmail if he liked, but wondered what he would call taking a photo from another's website and using it as his own? I would call it theft.
    It has now been 53 hours since I was told the photo would be taken down within 24 hours, and it is still there. In fact, it appears 3 times on that page.
    I also want everyone to be aware that he changed the name of the file, and put his own watermark on the lower right corner -- as if it were his own photo.
    I contacted eBay support and told them of this infraction. Just got a letter back from them saying, basically, if I want to do anything about it, I have to download a form, fill it out and fax it to them. They noted that time was very important as items come and go quickly on eBay. In other words, although I gave them all the particulars in my email to them, they really don't want to do anything about it.
    Yes, I've asked to place this issue on our Board's agenda.
    Incidentally, until this happened, I had high regard for Larry and his business. I've purchased at least one plant and some supplies from them, and supported their inclusion on our vendor list.
    Just thought you'd all like to know about all this.
     
  2. Oct 26, 2006 #2

    silence882

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    Damn that sucks. eBay's not making it easy on you and the listing should've been taken down by the seller immediately.

    One thing about the watermark, though. Ebay adds it automatically to any pics which eBay is hosting.

    --Stephen
     
  3. Oct 26, 2006 #3

    littlefrog

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    You go girl... I've never even heard of this guy, though. Sounds like one of those types that buy cheap plants and resell them as cheaply as possible without actually growing the things. I guess there is a place for that, although I prefer to do business with people who actually know what they are doing.

    Anyway, I'm not on the board anymore, but I would certainly think this is appropriate to bring up in the meeting. Getting a spot at our show is hard enough, we shouldn't be giving them out to people with this kind of attitude. Heck, I'm not even sure if I'll have a spot at the show, and I'm a life member. *grin*

    As an aside, these cheap fly by night places really piss off the growers who actually spend some time with their plants. It is hard to sell plants at a show when the guy next to you has just unpacked his box from Hawaii (sometimes the packing 'fluff' is still on the blossoms) and doesn't have even a fraction of the overhead cost that you have to tack onto a plant. Unfortunately this is probably the way the orchid business is going to evolve, so I guess everybody is going to have to figure out how to make it work.
     
  4. Oct 26, 2006 #4

    kentuckiense

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    Whoever responds to emails at Larry's Orchids sounds like quite the little brat.
     
  5. Oct 26, 2006 #5

    TADD

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    I won't buy from them or other vendors that use peoples pictures without permission. Thanks for the headsup!!!!!
     
  6. Oct 26, 2006 #6
    Isn't it great how the playing field can be so level? The same internet that allowed Larry to steal your photo has allowed you to alert us, resulting in his being placed on my blacklist.
     
  7. Oct 26, 2006 #7

    SlipperFan

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    Thanks for your support, everyone. That is very gratifying!
    Rob, I am pretty sure you are in...
     
  8. Oct 26, 2006 #8

    littlefrog

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    I hope I'm in...

    I just figured out who this guy is. He is nice enough in person, but doesn't really know much about orchids. Or at least doesn't seem to. Now that I've placed face with name, I'm surprized that he is stealing pictures. But I'm surprized when congressmen show interest in teenage boys too, I should know better than to blindly trust people.
     
  9. Oct 26, 2006 #9

    gonewild

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    There is no excuse or defense for stealing pictures. There is also no excuse for his defensive attitude. But sometimes it is not easy to change a picture on ebay. Even when a seller makes a change the change may not take effect in a timely manor, ebay's listing system does not always work well.

    Nice photo by the way.
     
  10. Oct 26, 2006 #10

    Carol

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    All that being said, the Phrag is lovely and I wouldn't mind owning one.;)
     
  11. Oct 26, 2006 #11

    SlipperFan

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    I think Porter's Orchids still have some. Remember, the photo was stolen from our site. If you go to our page, you'll see two photos. Not all the plants have bloomed this dark. In fact, a lighter form seems more the norm.
     
  12. Oct 26, 2006 #12

    Heather

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    Perhaps someone should send Larry a link to this thread....
    not cool...
     
  13. Oct 26, 2006 #13

    paphreek

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    I encourage you to download the EBay form and fax it to them. It may not help in this instance, but will have repercussions for the vendor. I informed a person who was using one of my photos that I was filing a formal complaint with EBay and he pulled the auction and relisted without my picture. He was not going to pull the pic, either until I threatened to file the complaint.
     
  14. Oct 26, 2006 #14

    paphreek

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    Just checked the auction for Phrag. Wossen and it has been closed!
     
  15. Oct 27, 2006 #15

    kentuckiense

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  16. Oct 27, 2006 #16
    The ebay form and process is annoying, but it streamlines the process (although not for you this time) and they are fairly responsive. (Just imagine how many requests they get from all the major fashion brands, not to mention all the trademark and copyright owners....)
     
  17. Oct 27, 2006 #17

    gore42

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    I know another vendor that is selling those too :)

    It must be tempting to use other people's pictures for Ebay listings... I hear about it all the time, and I know from experience that it makes a big difference in how the auction ends... better pictures mean more money. Still, it's theft... it's amazing how many unscrupulous people there are out there.

    I suppose that people are caught infrequently enough that it must be worth it. I don't suppose that it costs people anything if they are caught, so there isn't much of a deterent, economically speaking, unless word gets out like this and people stop buying their orchids.

    - Matt
     
  18. Oct 27, 2006 #18
    The nice thing about online sales spaces like ebay is that there can be repercussions for sellers, and you don't have to go to court to get a photo removed.

    From their listings policy:
    Listings that violate eBay's policies may result in disciplinary action. This action may include a formal warning, the ending of all violating listings, or even temporary or indefinite suspension of a user's account.​

    And from their User Ag:
    Without limiting other remedies, we may limit, suspend, or terminate our service and user accounts, prohibit access to our website, remove hosted content, and take technical and legal steps to keep users off the Sites if we think that they are creating problems, possible legal liabilities, or acting inconsistently with the letter or spirit of our policies. ​
     
  19. Oct 27, 2006 #19

    Jmoney

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    larry's orchids in the past has taken a few of my pictures. the first time I asked that it be removed and it was; the second time I demanded that it be removed, and got a real snippy answer from the morons over there. something to the effect that they would never pay for photo usage but that I was free to allow them to use them. I told them to get lost and that I would file a complaint with ebay (which is probably quite useless anyway). this is also the vendor that sold countless maudiae 'the queen', seedlings in 2.5 inch pots. you can roll the eyes and do the math on that one. this post has not been embellished; this is the simple truth.
     
  20. Oct 27, 2006 #20

    SlipperFan

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    May I quote you, Jason? One of my OS Board members is questioning whether Larry's intentions are bad.
     

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