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View Poll Results: Is this Ethical?

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  • Yes, absolutely.

    4 57.14%
  • Sorta', Maybe

    1 14.29%
  • Hell No.

    2 28.57%
  • You're Just Neurotic

    0 0%
Results 1 to 7 of 7
  1. #1
    SitePoint Zealot asterikx's Avatar
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    Exclamation Legal/Ethical Question

    My company will be developing template sites to sell to our ski-resort community. While the area's businesses are numerous, they have very few websites given the high tourist flow. Those websites are mostly text thrown together and last updated 5 years ago.

    My boss proposed taking these sites and placing them into the template format, redesigning them as necessary and place them on our promotional website to show what we can do with the templates.

    My question: Are we violating copyright laws by using someones website, however poorly designed, and using it for our sales purposes. While many of the businesses will most likely buy our templates, there's got to be a percentage that won't.

    We don't want to go and ask each individual owner for his/her permission. There's a fair bit of competition in the area and we'd rather be a few steps ahead of them.

    What is the chance that business owners will resent the fact that we used their identity and images to market our product?

    http://www.skithesky.com

    Example 1: http://www.skithesky.com/buckst4

    -- asterikx

  2. #2
    Ex-SitePointer silver trophy
    iFroggy's Avatar
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    Yes, I would say it is unethical.

    I definitely wouldn't do it. Why not create generic ski resort names? Or are you just trying to profit off being associated with a given resort?

    If you are, then that is bad. If you aren't, make up a resort name and use that.

  3. #3
    SitePoint Zealot asterikx's Avatar
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    Clarification

    Before each site is posted we are going to show them to the business owner.

    Are we still infringing by simply showing them a better product?

    If we give the business owner an opportunity to object and deny permission to use him for demonstration, all before they are place on our site, does it change?

  4. #4
    Bimbo With A Brain! silver trophy Saz's Avatar
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    I would say it's unethical too. If you want to show how well you can transform somebody's site, then ask them first and perhaps offer them a discounted rate for allowing you to use their site to promote your own business.

    [edit]
    Whoops...we posted at the same time.

    If you ask them before publishing their re-worked site, then yes, it's ok.
    Saz: Naturally Blonde, Naturally Dizzy!
    No longer Editor of the Community Crier.

    Don't mind me, I'm having a BLONDE moment!

  5. #5
    Ex-SitePointer silver trophy
    iFroggy's Avatar
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    Re: Clarification

    Originally posted by asterikx
    If we give the business owner an opportunity to object and deny permission to use him for demonstration, all before they are place on our site, does it change?
    Yes, permission is everything.

  6. #6
    SitePoint Wizard wdmny's Avatar
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    Yeah, what you're proposing would be like one of us taking a company's site which we think is less than perfect (our opinion) and doing it like we were hired to do the work.

    What if someone took Coke.com and redesigned it and used it on their portfolio. A lawsuit would most likely ensue.

  7. #7
    SitePoint Zealot asterikx's Avatar
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    One More Question

    Our company is working in cooperation with a local newspaper. As such we have access to local businesses' logos and corporate identity files.

    What are this forum's thoughts on using these files, and placing them in our templates to show the businesses. They will not be posted to a portfolio or used in sales until the design has been shown to the owner.

    Can we legally/ethically use the files that have not been given directly to our business, but to a co-owners separate business to produce mock-ups?

    My whole theory behind this discussion is to be able to create something on our own time that we can spontaneously show the business owner. Thereby we've gotten a jump on the competition.


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