Sam Brown

No, you can't have some or any of my design!

Interestingly I was just about to start writing this here little rant, when a new item popped up in my feed reader from Wolfgang Bartelme titled Design Theft. Not exactly what I was about to write but its pretty similar. Why do people think its ok to steal someone else’s design?

What is really irking me lately is the amount of emails I have been getting ‘asking’ me if I can give them part or all of my design. “If you could just zip up the html, css & images that would be great”. Uhm.. what? Hello? No!

It’s not cool. I spend time and effort making all of my work specific for my sites and I’m not in a hurry to just package it up and give it away, those are templates and there are plenty of them out there. Is it just me, or are the design thief’s getting lazy, I can’t believe they have the tenacity to ask for my work! Harsh words, I know. But it needs to be said.

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Ross C Brown 27 January 2008, 06:07 #1

Well seeing you bring it up Sam. A WordPress port of this sites design would be nice – you know, some PHP and CSS and just ZIP it up. Oh and see this Sam Brown thing, well for the port I think Ross Brown would be better. And how about a ‘C’ between the Ross and Brown? Just when you have time. But I don’t want to be calling you up tomorrow about this so tonight will be fine!

Joking aside, just think what the would will be like when all of China is online, intellectual property infringement x 1 billion.

You’ll be aware of Engadget, will in Asia there are retail stores that have stolen the Engadget branding completely. It is insane!

James Osborn 27 January 2008, 06:21 #2

Even worse is when designs are stolen or templates used for Clients. I know someone who ‘designs’ websites for local customers and simply rips them off OSWD… i mean where are the ethics in that!

Creative talent is being abused and it’s just wrong!

Tim Van Damme 27 January 2008, 14:24 #3

hello i am a webdesigner from belgium and would like to use your design for my personal website is it ok for me to send you login information for ftp so you can upload all files to there and tell me how to use it please so i can have pretty website i will thank you with all my heart and lots of camels kthnxbai

Sam Brown 27 January 2008, 16:47 #4

@Ross: I’ll get right onto a WordPress port for you! The Engadget store is crazy, hadn’t seen that.

@James: Absolutely, there is inspiration from other sites and there is plain stealing.

@Tim: There are camels in Belgium?

Doug 18 February 2008, 18:35 #5

Hey Sam. This is actually kind of off topic but I’m seeing two groups of comments and two comment forms in your page, maybe you need to turn off the adding of comments in TXP’s admin?

Anyway, awesome design, I really love how you style the different content types.


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Sam Brown co-founded Iterate, and was previously VP of Design at Foursquare. Based in NYC.