Top wedding photographer Doug Gordon's IP theft outed
Nikon issued a statement detracting Gordon from his Nikon US ambassador title in light of plagiarism and other unsavoury activities…
It’s not the first time Doug Gordon has been called on plagiarism for facebook statuses, or even more bizarrely, bios on both his social media, and websites, but this time it may be harder to pass the buck onto the intern or SEO company who ‘wrote’ them. Earlier this week, Photostealers investigated after Gordon supposedly cleaned up his act, and found entire articles on his workshop page to have been plagiarised, as well the suspect bios still plaguing his sites. Those in the industry who prior jumped to Gordon’s defence have left him out in the cold facing the reality of what he has done, claiming he had multiple opportunities to clean up his act and can no longer cite ignorance as an excuse (as if it ever could be).
Gordon was prior banned from speaking at the WPPI conference after the first round of allegations surfaced, but still appeared in the Nikon booth. Today it has been confirmed by Nikon that he is no longer an ambassador for the company.
While image theft continues to afflict the industry, perhaps we should be more vigilant when it comes to intellectual property theft of all kind too, such as blogs, bios and even things as innocent as tweets. You may ask, why would someone steal a bio?
The below is just one example of the theft and was written by lawyer, Kevin A. Gliwa before being stolen by Gordon:
“Kevin, a shareholder practicing in Otten Johnson’s real estate group, was raised by penguins following a childhood boating accident.
He graduated magna cum laude from Colby College, where he learned that not all issues can be reduced to black or white. He received his law degree from Boston University, which he attended on a full football scholarship through an administrative error. Thereafter, he worked for four years as an associate at a large law firm in New York, where he once rode an elevator to the top of the Empire State Building. He lectures frequently to his children on a variety of subjects. He enjoys swimming and fishing, despite the painful memories.
In the years since the above bio was published on Otten Johnson’s predecessor website, Kevin has received many bemused inquiries, often pertaining to the state of his health. To limit future inquiry, here are answers to some of the more frequently asked questions:
(a) Emperor, not King.
(b) Yes it was cold, but I had a sweater.
Admissions and Affiliations
State of New York
State of Colorado
American Bar Association
Colorado Bar Association
Denver Bar Association
Writes free-verse, non-rhyming limericks.”
Witty, yes, but just because it’s on the internet and it’s quality writing, it does not mean it’s there for the taking, and credit should be due to the author, as with any images. You may think it’s a bit of harmless fun, but it is the same principle which applies to image theft and Gordon is saying this is okay. If you still think bios are small time and not a big deal, the fact that Gordon is taking credit for entire articles on his workshop site, claiming these are part of his brand when they are actually stolen should raise more than just eyebrows.
Perhaps even more shocking are the allegations which have surfaced since the initial investigation by Photostealers, in which a wedding client of Gordon’s claimed that a fifteen year old apprentice and student of one of Gordon’s workshops was sent in his place and effectively ruined the client’s wedding photography, and were powerless to protest because the contract stated the photographer could be changed at any moment. When the couple tried to fight back against such discourteous move and suspend their payment, Gordon called the police. The couple paid the balance and haven’t even received an album.
It seems Gordon is just a crude business man at heart, and not the great photographer so many had put on a platform in the past, and though he is clearly not welcome at many conferences and has been ousted by Nikon, Gordon continues to practice photography, and even teach workshops.
We’re curious to know what you think of the incident. Has it been blown out of proportion? Or should more action be taken? Let us know at @PhotoMonthly #DougGordon
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