Times Of India features WebSide on their Front Page!
If the heading didn’t get your attention, this blog post probably should! In a shameless act, Times Of India ripped off our Independence Day Doodle that we created back in 2011, you check this, this and this to get an idea of what we did that fascinated TOI to use our Doodle without any proper credits or prior permission to use them.
Just incase you didn’t know much about The Times Of India, “The Times of India (TOI) is an Indian English-language daily newspaper. In 2008, the newspaper reported that it was certified by the Audit Bureau of Circulations (India) as the world’s largest selling English-language daily, ranking it as the 8th largest selling newspaper in any language in the world. According to the Indian Readership Survey (IRS) 2011, the Times of India is the most widely read English newspaper in India with a readership of 74.71 lakhs (7.471 million). This ranks the Times of India as the top English daily in India by readership.” (Source: Wikipedia).
TOI is part of the The Times Group empire which also owns: The Economic Times, Navbharat times, Mumbai Mirror, Radio Mirchi, Planet M, Zoom TV, Times NOW, Femina, Filmfare, TimesJobs.com, SimplyMarry.com and MagicBricks, making it a multi million (if not billion) dollar conglomerate! Now, the billion dollar question is: Why on earth would such a huge media faced company steal other people’s work and place on their commercial properties without crediting the creator or the source where the work was taken from? It could possibly the cheap stunt of the designer at TOI who just lives off his life by using other people’s work and TOI thinks it’s ok that way.
What’s the big deal you may ask? We do custom doodle (modifications to our logo for use on major events, such as the Independence Day) and share a version of it for public (personal) use (non-commercial) so they can share the joy and we often love seeing our creative work seen and shared at various places on social media & the internet. If people do use it for commercial purpose, all we ask is to take our prior permission or credit us back for the work we have done.
We were altered earlier today by one of our WebSider, Amit Yarashi that our work was
featured ripped off in front page of Times Of India. When we glanced we didn’t quite notice what he spotted as the front page was colored with tri-colors of Indian flag, but later when we did spot, we were shocked out of excitement as our work was featured and seen by millions of Indians and equally anguish due to the fact we couldn’t see any credits or source of the work featured.
We posted about mixed opinion about this TOI plagiarism at Facebook & Twitter and soon it was picked up Twitter stalwarts Amit Agarwal, Priyanka aka TwilightFairy, Nikhil Narayanan among others! What’s interesting about the conversations that is going on Twitter is some suggestions we’ve been provided:
— Rushikesh Khadtare (@Rushi_Khadtare) August 15, 2012
— Fahd Hussein (@FahdHussein) August 15, 2012
— eddie duggan (@eddieduggan) August 15, 2012
— anuradhagoyal (@anuradhagoyal) August 15, 2012
— Raju (@rajupp) August 15, 2012
While we try to contact TOI to get their clarification on this issue, we would appreciate if you can spread the word on the shameless rip off act by Times Of India via Twitter or on Facebook! We will keep you posted on how this issue progresses from our end. If you are from media and would like to get more details on this, feel free to get in touch with us.
Update 1 (16.08.2012 @ 6:30 PM): TOI Editor, Mr.Vikas called us today to apologise about the incident. He further added their designer’s last day at work was yesterday and they couldn’t reach out to him to find about this issue in detail. However, Vikas has promised us to sort this issue by tomorrow amicably and provide a solution on the same. Vikas also added that plagiarism and copyright infringement is taken seriously at TOI.
While we wait for their call tomorrow along with a solution, we would like to hear from you on what we should demand? Credits to our work and a public apologizes on their main page along with a compensation for using our creative design work on their commercial news daily sold to 75 lakhs readers? We’re also taking guidance from legal consultants who also happen to be our friends. We will share our update when we hear back from TOI. Thanks for your support on Twitter and Facebook for spreading this news to make us heard. We hope such plagiarism case is taken seriously by brands and respect the creation of an individual’s work by giving the credit they deserve. - Jai Hind!
Update 2 (23.08.2012 @ 10:30 AM): TOI published a note on their news daily today admitting a mistake of not crediting a work they used on their August 15th edition. The note read “In the edition dated August 15, TOI carried this logo on the front page but inadvertenly omitted to give credit to www.webside.co.in - WebSide, a digital media company specializing in creaitive marketing strategy for brands. The error is regretted.” We’ve taken a picture of the note that appeared in TOI today (check below), the same is available on their ePaper too. You can also check the note on ePaper version directly here.
Thanks to everyone who tweeted, shared, liked, commented, blogged and ignored about this on Facebook, Twitter, Blogsphere & the WWW – without your social expression, this would have not been possible!