Inktober Book Plagerism Accusations

  • SVS Instructor Pro

    @NessIllustration True that it is perhaps too bad to miss Inktober this year, but this feels like the kind of book that will have a long sales tail. I actually don't think it will be a significant issue. In fact a year from now, when the drama has died down (and ideally when the plagiarism issue has been put to rest) I would see that being better for the book.

  • @davidhohn Especially now that Inktober52 is around, too 🙂 Gives us a year to read the book in preparation for October 2021.

  • @jthomas Whaaaaat?.... It is still marked as "currently unavailable" on Amazon Canada... 😢

  • Moderator

    @pixel-dsp @jthomas
    Me too!! Arriving 10/20/20

  • @pixel-dsp Amazon Canada cancelled my order, but it's now once (as of today I suppose?) again available for preorder.

  • Mine says now expected Oct 20th, but it hasn't been shipped yet and when you get on the page of the book, it still shows as Currently Unavailable. I'm hoping it arrives as a nice well-done present for finishing Inktober - something to read while I get ready for 2021!

  • Can Anyone Explain ??


  • @Shyam-Sailus Just feels like vultures circling trying to capitalize on a weakened animal. Scavenging.

  • @charitymunoz inktober book.png

    inktober b1ook.png

    Its not available in India..

  • Not much to add about the controversy, but I just want to learn art so i'm looking forward to my pre-order of the inktober book 😃 thanks @Jake-Parker

  • @George-Broussard

    Why? If someone wants to promote their brand, there is nothing wrong with that. If Inktober can't be used commercially than there is little choice than to do something new. As for using both hashtags, why promote a competitors brand?

    Just like Jake trademarking Inktober, it's not personal it's just business. Anything successful will spawn copy cats.

  • @Shyam-Sailus Well, Inktober is just one of the inking challenges, and if other group of artists want to launch their own inking challenge, they should be allowed to, and why wait until November? October is coming up. Inktober has never claimed monopoly on this. Jeff Watts seems to be a very level-headed person and extremely experienced fine art artist, and most likely has no interest in this controversy. Just my guess though...
    Just adding one more thing: the prompt from Watts' atelier has a very different flavor then Inktober, some artists might find it more suitable for them. Or maybe some will combine the two challenges and do ink drawing that work with both prompts. This will be very interesting!

  • Moderator

    Meh. I had to think about this for a while. Watts Atelier's strength isn't in inking. It's in the charcoal portraiture and figurative renderings in the old-school Russian realist style they're known for. It is indeed a great list that focuses on methods instead of word inspiration and feels really academic if you're looking for that, but at this point the whole thing seems kinda bandwagon-ish to me. It's hard to separate the angry anti-Inktober hashtags from the legit alternative-things-to-be-inspired-by lists.

    I don't know why they wouldn't want to make commercial arrangements to pair with Inktober if they were going to do something specifically ink-based to promote their brand/school--they could have reached hundreds of thousands of potential new students. Seems like a missed opportunity. I think they'll just get lost in the literal sea of alternative prompt hashtags in October, personally. I'm sure it will appeal to their own current following and students looking for the flavor of instructional development rather than singular word prompts (if those people ever actually find it). I don't think they're purposefully creating something to spite Inktober--there are too many of those out there already. I'm just not sure it will do them any good to create an ink-based challenge in October though...

  • @Coreyartus said in Inktober Book Plagerism Accusations:

    I don't think they're purposefully creating something to spite Inktober--there are too many of those out there already. I'm just not sure it will do them any good to create an ink-based challenge in October though...

    I think they are clearly trying to capitalize on Inktober drama. They clearly understand and know what's going on and they chose to launch an ink even in October, with essentially the same rules and directions as Inktober. I mean, it is what it is...

    Only reason it's noteworthy is it isn't some random person on the internet doing WitchTober or whatever else. Watts has a higher profile and should basically reject doing an ink even in October because of the optics alone! Unless of course they take the angle that they are against Jake and pro Alphonso and this is as much of an attack and condemnation as anything else.

    So is what it is, but it's clear as day.

  • SVS OG

    @jimsz fair enough. But I think it's common courtesy to tag Inktober. Their challenge is clearly a variation of Inktober. it's only fair to acknowledge their source of inspiration otherwise they're committing a copyright/trademark (?) infringement.

  • @Nyrryl-Cadiz

    Trademark does not allow you to cash in on someones registered mark. By hashtagging Inktober the argument could be made that 1. Inktober is a generic name for common actvity which could void the trademark. Or 2. the " business" hashtagging Inktober could receive a C&D since they are seen as capitalizing or infringing on someone elses mark.

    If you don't think that is factual start selling or pushing something on social media from which you will make a profit and use a media conglomerates hashtag (like Disney).

    I received a rather blunt and forceful C&D letter years ago filled with all sorts of threats - not on a drawing but on my style of drawing with the demand I cease doing any work totally. Mind you at that point I had done 150+ different pieces for multiple publications and publishers and my work was published long before this other person/company picked up a pencil. They were casting a wide net to protect a brand.

    People here are using emotion in these discussions and it has nothing to do with emotion. Jake (with legitimate right and reason) made the decision to go all in on Inktober and this end result is simply the end game of that. There will be blowback, there will be negative comments and there will be copycats (legally).

  • SVS Instructor Pro

    @Nyrryl-Cadiz said in Inktober Book Plagerism Accusations:

    it's only fair to acknowledge their source of inspiration otherwise they're committing a copyright/trademark (?) infringement.

    Because you added the "?" I thought I'd clarify this a bit based on my understanding.

    Citing your source(s) is an academic standard to avoid a plagiarism accusation. Plagiarism isn't illegal whereas copyright infringement is. For more on this concept:

    In the event of an actual copyright infringement citing your source provides no legal protection. The same is true for a trademark infringement. It's useful to get a handle on the difference between trademark and copyright (and just for fun -- patents)

    So my understanding is that Watts Atelier is not doing anything legally wrong in creating this event, and promoting it in this way.

    After reviewing the Inktober trademark info page:
    I have to conclude that the choice by Watts Atelier not to include the #inktober hashtag is likely intentional and specifically designed not to infringe on Jake's Inktober trademark.

    All that said, would it have been just a decent thing for Watts Atelier to do and get permission from Jake to officially use #inktober in their social media posts? Yeah, probably. But they don't have too.

  • @George-Broussard I don't know...... it is not clear. Saying Watts Atelier is capitalizing on the Inktober drama being "as clear as day" is similar to Alphonso Dunn's mob fan stating it is "as clear as day" that Jake undeniably and blatantly plagiarized. I think this is the same situation where it's better to give Watts the benefit of the doubt first since they have been a trustworthy business with integrity, just like Jake. Despite this whole controversy, the world is not out there to get Jake and not everything involving inking in October is about Inktober. So this brings to my next point:

    @Nyrryl-Cadiz Jake only copyrighted the logo of Inktober. He did not copyright "ink art challenge in the month of October". So there is no copyright infringement. Jeff Watts participated in Inktober in 2019 and made tutorial videos for his students. So it's likely that he might have realized the Inktober prompts is not well suited for his atelier and teaching methodology and has been thinking about coming up with his own prompt that is better for his students for 2020. Is the timing awkward? Yes, but he shouldn't have to stop his plans just because the Inktober drama.

    I'm really happy Watts came up with this prompt because it pairs so well with Inktober. My challenge with random word generator is that no only I have to be creative with the subject to draw, I have to decide on the style and technique. Now, Watts gives me ideas about how to narrow down the boundaries of this process, and my mental bandwidth for creativity is not exceeded.
    We need to get out of this mindset of scarcity and not behave like Dunn. Dunn thought of Jake's book as a threat, while the reality is artsy people tend to buy many books of the same topic. Similarly, Watts' prompt for October is not a competition or threat towards Inktober. At least he didn't come up with a cheap spin-off of the name "Inktober" or any month ending with "er". "Ink with Watts" is very catchy and I like it!

  • SVS Instructor Pro

    @pixel-dsp You literally posted just after I did so you might have missed this link:

    I confess that I thought Jake only trademarked the Inktober logotype too. But that does not appear to be the case. It reads like he trademarked the word "Inktober" and the logotype.

    Not trying to nit-pick your post (which bring up a bunch of important points!) but when discussing copyright vs trademark the distinction is important.

Log in to reply