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Bartleby the Scrivener vegan27
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plagiarism or my trademark paranoia?
Early in the planning process of the home and garden tour earlier this month, my neighbor Blake (who chaired the home tour committee) found this great image representing Corktown made by a local artist named Meredith Miotke:

The group liked the image so much that we (with the artist's permission) had it incorporated into the posters advertising this year's event:

Then today on Facebook I happened to see _kissingchaos "like" this photo on Awesome Mitten's page:

Fiddle-dee-dee! This image is credited to local graphic designer John Kalmar, who presumably saw the home tour poster and said, "I just got a great new idea! How about I take the thing that I just saw and then copy it!" It's all there--the outline of the streets in the background, stylized representations of the facades of architectural landmarks, and noting the widely-quoted "founding" date of Corktown of 1834 (which I dispute, but that's a topic for another blog post.) The dude even uses the SAME FONT as the poster (Deming EP).

It's too bad, because I kind of like Kalmar's image, although I prefer Miotke's hand-drawn style. We put her name on our posters--all he had to do was Google her name and ask for permission or suggest a collaboration. How disappointing.

Oh wow. That's total crap.

Eh, that is what some "artistic" people do: They copy it, but make it slightly different and consider it their own because they put the work into it. That's called "graphic design", kinda like what I did with the map - I merely traced it so it could be blown up. No original nothing. Anyone who says that I am "artistic" will be immediately corrected: I am NOT an artist. I simply design or redesign something that's already been done and I make it look pretty and legible. That's it.

That guy really should have given credit to the actual artist. He's probably just a newbie. Oh well...

With things like the Woodward poster, even if it's just tracing a 200-year-old street plan, the job still took skill, work, software and equipment, and what you produced has a lot of value even and deserves credit even if you don't want to call it artistic.

But this guy is definitely copying a cool idea he simply saw somewhere else. The one little detail that really bothers me is that he went through the trouble of finding the exact font that was used on the home tour literature--it's definite proof that it was no innocent coincidence, but pretty blatant plagiarism.