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Just To Be Clear

The question naturally arises, what would be an acceptable resolution to the Jess Fink/Hot Topic situation? As I see it, some of the remedies proposed last year in the Shmorky/Goldman don’t quite apply (given that Hot Topic aren’t selling $5000 versions of lifted artwork, but rather a whole mess o’ t-shirts). Here’s what I came up with as model solutions — feel free to comment.

  1. Hot Topic enter into good-faith negotiations with Jess Fink and Threadless to determine an equitable compensation for the theft of the design; this should not be based on the number of shirts they sell, but the number that HT has stocked into their inventory.
  2. Hot Topic should feel free to seek compensation from the vendor whose designer felt the need to lift so blatantly.
  3. Hot Topic should let us know what they’re going to do to help prevent situations like this recurring regularly, as they have been.

Now, Hot Topic are of course a very large corporation that need not necessarily pay attention to what some artist somewhere is saying; then again, Todd Goldman was widely reputed to be a $90 million/year shirtmonger, and yet attention and behavior changes were forced in that case.

If you wanted to let Hot Topic know your feelings on this matter (and missed the alt text in yesterday’s post), note that Hot Topic has a contact page, complete with email, 800 number, and live chat with customer service reps. A polite inquiry along the lines of, Can you tell me how Hot Topic will be dealing fairly with artist Jess Fink, whose stolen work you are presently selling? that shows up in the call logs a hundred times or so could have a damn near immediate effect. Go make me proud.

I used to work in a call center, and remember y’all…. the people answering the phones probably don’t even work for Hot Topic. They’ve probably never even seen a Hot Topic. So be nice and polite…. you just want it to be entered in the computer or whatever.

[…] Following up on Ryan Estrada’s spot-on comment yesterday (short version: the people answering the Hot Topic 800 number have nothing to do with the […]

[…] Moen once got an indescribably awesome birthday gift from Vera Brosgol. Hot Topic, who have pulled this shit repeatedly, are selling a t-shirt with artwork blatantly stolen from Moen’s […]

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