Photographer steals pictures for his “portfolio,” then brags about it

by Felix Esser

posted Monday, January 13, 2014 at 5:41 PM EDT

Sadly, stealing other people's work is all too commonplace these days -- especially on the internet -- where it's easy to just grab something and promote it as your own. As it so happened recently when a student was caught submitting stolen photographs to various contests all over the world (wide web). But it's not only individuals who steal. Sometimes, even media outlets -- who, one would assume, know the difference between 'mine' and 'yours' -- are infringing on other people's copyrights.

The latest story of intellectual property theft is even more concerning, as apperently the thief not only fails to acknowledge the fact that he has been stealing, he also justifies his actions as a means of "biz." A photographer that goes by the alias 'jwarstyle' has been caught stealing wedding photos from established professionals. His intention, apparently, was to establish himself as a wedding photographer.

So, for him, the reasonable approach apparently was to steal the work of others and show it off as his own, probably in order to attract potential customers for his business. As if that wasn't bad enough already, when exposed, he immediately switched into defensive mode, claiming his theft was a business act, and even going so far as to label the proprietor of the stolen work a "douchebag."

The galleries in question have been taken down in the meantime, but the whole timeline of attacks and counter-attacks on Twitter is still there (it began on January 7th.) As is a post on his blog where he brags about how all the negative publicity has actually helped him gain attraction to his website. Well, yes...when someone steals photos and posts them on their website, and the media reports about it, people will actually visit the site to confirm the story.
So, what's the moral of this story? We're not entirely sure there is one, to be honest. Jwarstyle doesn't seem to have learned much from this. If anything, it goes to show how easy it is to let all moral and ethics drop on the internet. But on the positive side, this also clearly demonstrates that blogs such as Photo Stealers on Tumblr are doing a great job to help expose intellectual property thieves.
We could now go on about jwarstyle's writing style on Twitter and on his blog, but what it gives away about his character and his socialization, and how this all fits into a certain picture, we'll leave the judging up to you. Make your own picture (pun intended)!

(via DIY Photography)