Sending My First Takedown Notice

Occasionally I use the Google image search function to see if any of my photos are being used on other websites. Yes… It is something to do when insomnia strikes.

Earlier this month I found quite a few of my photos being used on an very obnoxious site. The same page also contained numerous images from the West Hawai’i Astronomy Club website. I will forgo including the URL or link here, no need providing them one more incoming referral. Suffice it to say that the entire website was constructed of stolen or scraped material, the sole purpose of which is to serve as search engine bait. Once on the website clicking on anything generated pop-ups, pop-unders, a slew of ads. This was not innocent infringement, this is a business built on theft of intellectual property.

A little sleuthing revealed that the site was located on a hosting service out of the Netherlands, As this site is not within the US a DMCA takedown notice is not legally enforceable. However, European law is pretty good with respect to copyright, the hosting provider should take a notice of infringement seriously. Thus I sent an email off to the listed customer service address…

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