On September 4, artist @shikinaminn tweeted a post featuring her fan artwork of a character of the anime “Uma Musume Pretty Derby” from a page of Amazon claiming she doesn’t remember providing the permission to sell her art there. Amazon took notice of the issue and apologized, however did not give any concrete solution to solve the matter.
Instead, Amazon asked her to request for intellectual property infringement by contacting them using a dedicated form. Even so, the problem did not go away immediately until a few tries and requests.
“We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused. We will respond to requests for intellectual property infringement by contacting us[Copyright] owners can report IP concerns directly to us via our Public Notice form and we will respond to the requests.”
The issue of stolen artwork on Amazon is widespread and well-known, but the company hasn’t addressed the infringement in a meaningful way. Fighting unauthorized use of artists’ original work on the site remains a constant battle. Works of art are considered copyrighted goods and are not trademarks, like a brand name or logo, so artists don’t qualify for the “proactive brand protection” Amazon’s Brand Registry provides.
And even when the company does remove infringing listings after several pleads, the same stolen artwork often crops up again elsewhere on the site. On top of that, while the law requires Amazon to remove infringement, it does not hold the company responsible when artists sue the e-commerce giant for hosting stolen artwork and providing logistics for sellers who offer it.
A few days ago another Uma Musume artwork popped up on Amazon, where the artist requested their followers to not buy the product and report it if possible claiming it as a matter of infringement of her work.