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Copying, Copyrights, & You:
Is Copying a Crime?

Law Firm Claims Rival Sucked Up Business
By Copying And Hijacking Their Website

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We are taught not to copy a person’s work since it can get us in trouble. According to an article by Above The Law, a law firm is suiting another firm on the basis of copying and hijacking their website.

In Illinois, Motta & Motta is suing Dolci & Weiland over the alleged hijacking and plagiarism. The suit claims that Dolci capitalized on Motta’s reputation by using website hashtags and headers to mislead search engines into believing Motta’s website is Dolci’s website. According to the suit allegations, Dolci & Weiland’s website mirrored Motta’s copyrighted design and content and even copied (verbatim) articles and blogs on Motta’s website.

In school, we are taught many basic principles such as reading, writing, mathematics, but we also introduced into many ethical values as well, such as responsibility, quality, leadership, respect, and honesty. One way these ethical values are exercised is through integrity and not committing plagiarism. This article brings up some interesting points relating to privacy, defamation, and fraud and how Dolci’s law firm was acting unlawfully. Instead of Dolci taking the time to create their website and content, they are now facing a lengthy legal process that is going to cost them a lot of money!

 

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Questions:

1) In what situations is it against the law to impersonate someone online?

2) When would impersonating a person online be a form of fraud, or why would it not be a fraud? 

3) The law firm that claimed to be victimized specifically mentioned hashtags in their complaint.  Hashtags are basically hyperlinks: text that results in being connected to related information.  If the law firm sued only over the plagiarism of the hashtags on their website, why do you think they would or would not have a good chance of winning their case in court?  Be specific by using other lawsuits or trademark and copyright news articles as examples when creating your response.*  

*Hint #1: Are companies guaranteed websites with their names?

*Hint #2: What are some examples of trademarks, copyrights, and the differences between the two?


Be sure to provide full explanations for each of your answers. For more details, you can read the article this piece was sourced from here
:

https://abovethelaw.com/2018/08/law-firm-claims-rival-sucked-up-business-by-copying-and-hijacking-their-website/

Contributed by – J. Pennington




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