Welcome back folks, here's a live blog of what happened when billion-dollar fashion company stole my artwork - Nigel the frog.
Day 4 (part 2) - Shein says no
To their credit, Shein were very quick to respond to my Cease and Desist.
Unfortunately, their response was worse than garbage (Side note - I love the phrase worse than garbage, a kind soul on Social Media once used it to describe my art, and I've decided to lean into it).
Shein basically was like, no, we don't accept your Cease and Desist letter FROM AN ACTUAL SOLICTOR. We need more info.
Here is their reply, and my reply.
Day 5 - Nigel, the early years.
Well, day 5 was just radio silence, there might have been another copy and pasted email from Shein saying there wasn't enough evidence, honestly, they have all blurred into one now.
Just for the record, here's pic of Nigel timestamped 2019 (he had more hair then):
Sooooo, the next step is go public on social media and hope the Bestie Army wanna get involved!
GOING PUBLIC eeeee!
Ok, so copyright issues actually happen a lot. Usually, it's a small company (often just a one-man band on eBay), someone who thinks that because "they found the image on the internet, it's free to use".
Honestly, I kid you not.
But these are normally pretty easy to stop. I don't like to talk about them all the time because I prefer to focus on the many, many positives of running Sugar & Sloth (mainly you guys!).
But after 6 days of being ignored or fobbed off, Shein clearly has no intention of removing Nigel or acknowledging their wrongdoing, so this has to be my next step. I post about the whole thing on social media, along with a sexy Nigel pic.
And all my goodness, you guys are amazing! I am blown away by your support, thank you so so much, it really means so so much!
You besties have been sharing and commenting on Shein's own feeds too, DMing them and raising awareness for the cause!
Note the large mass of threatening red text saying not to share their emails, FUCK YOU SHEIN, you made me this way.
Stay tuned for the next exciting episode of Nigel the Frog vs the Art Theft Billionaires.
Day 7 -A (sort of) victory, but also what the hell?
Ok, so thank YOU for all of your comments, sharing my posts, and DMing Shein. They have finally removed Nigel from their website HURRAH!
I received this email from them:
This email is problematic because:
1. Nigel wasn't removed "a few days ago", he was conveniently removed a few hours after when YOU besties started making noise on social media and leaving tons of comments on their posts (I am eternally grateful).
2. Is that supposed to be an apology?
3. It sounds like Shein just plans on keeping the profit they have made from Nigel (he was labeled one of the "top sellers" on their website, and already had hundreds of reviews). This means zero consequences for Shein, they are free to just search the Internet for more designs they don't own to put on their products.
Unfortunately, I know I'm far from the only artist Shein have stolen designs from, since taking this to social media I've spoken to so many!
Here is my latest response to Shein, it also addresses that they have been automatically hiding comments that hit certain trigger words related to art theft.
This means the writer of the comment still sees the original comment, but anyone else looking at the post cannot see it. It's super eye-opening the trigger words they choose to hide.
Day number - Eurgh, I lost count, this email arrived on August 30th
To Shein's credit, I was VERY surprised to see this email from them with product sales data attached (Nigel was sold on two Shein products).
Unfortunately, the sales data seems to have no basis in reality.
Before Nigel was removed from Shein's website, I took screenshots of the products, which showed the number of reviews the products had received. As anyone working in online retail knows, only a small proportion of those purchasing will leave a review. However, the number of product reviews was larger than the total product sales Shein claims.
Something doesn't add up...
They have, of course, ignored the rest of my last email.
Stay tuned for the next episode of "Anita is very stubborn and refuses to normalise Art Theft (or some catchier title if you can think of one please)."