Is Urban Outfitters Stealing Work From Independent Designers AGAIN?

urbanoutfittersrip.jpg
Tumblr/Glam-Trash
Oh, hi! Welcome to Urban Outfitters! We sell clothes made by people with twice our talent at four times the price!

Yet another independent designer is claiming Urban Outfitters has ripped off her work. A Tumblr user with the handle Glam-Trash posted screencaps of an Urban Outfitters shirt and a T-shirt design posted to Fresh Tops carrying a design she claims lifted from a book cover she created. (We are working on finding the original cover.) Urban Outfitters should know better than to rip off people with social media presences: The post has been reblogged nearly 50,000 times.

See also: Are Brooklyn Fashion Designers Being Ripped Off by Urban Outfitters?

It's hard not to be galled by a multimillion-dollar corporation whose business model is digesting others' work to sell cheap, neutered versions when you become the victim. Glam-Trash made her displeasure known with a salty Tumblr jag.

MY IDENTITY IS BEING RAPED...BEING RAPED BEING RAPED FOR $79

I HATE YOU.

this isnt the first time, another place is selling it for $27

I DONT GET A DIME FOR THIS, NOT EVEN FUCKING CREDIT

FUCK YOU ALL, its a little doodle, but it has actual meaning. you aren't fucking weird, you are trendy. I'm fucking weird, that is a part of a book cover that i did for school....it was based on a story about me!!! HOW I WAS TOO WEIRD for someone i had feelings for, how i wasnt pretty or skinny like the rest and you are trying to be so "ironic" just stop. fucking stop.

After some upset over equating the theft of a T-shirt design to rape, Glam-Trash re-edited the original post to remove the first line.

The Urban Outfitters version has since sold out, and the Fresh Tops listing has also been taken down. The Village Voice is awaiting comment from Fresh Tops regarding why the design was taken down. We will update as soon as they get back to us.

See also: Urban Outfitters, Still Stealing Designs From Local Artists

According to her Tumblr, Glam-Trash has been inundated with messages from followers and has decided to shut down her inbox, but she has posted that she "[doesn't] have much comment on what's going to happen."

It's not news that Urban Outfitters rips off smaller designers. It's been happening for a long time -- the Village Voice remembers reading posts on MySpace about UO stealing work . Glam-Trash is by no means the first designer to have her work lifted by Urban Outfitters wholesale. She's not even the first one to harness social media to expose it.

Back in 2011, blogger and jewelry designer Stevie Koerner blew up the blogosphere with the revelation that Urban Outfitters had ripped off an entire line of her jewelry. According to her blog, it was that line that allowed to her pursue design full-time. Though Urban Outfitters eventually pulled the line, it wasn't before the retailer's reputation as thieving fashion hacks was cemented.

Send your story tips to the author, Raillan Brooks.




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11 comments
savethecows_moo
savethecows_moo

Funny thing though... um.. Urban buys shirts from other brands.. so blame the brand, not the store that carries it. for real. 


savethecows_moo
savethecows_moo

Funny thing though... um.. Urban buys shirts from other brands.. so blame the brand, not the store that carries it. for real. 

verainnepaige
verainnepaige

Now here's my question: If they like the artists design so much, then why not just hire the artist? Obviously their artists are incompetent.

glam-trash
glam-trash

I am "glam-trash" on tumblr, i was asked to respond to this via phone but i didnt see that until today. I already apologized for using the word rape publicly and privately to individuals who felt they had to personally message me about it and changed my wording. The original image is on my blog i uploaded a 500px transparent image but i have the original scan and vector files. They ripped me off in that they never once tried to alter the design other than to clean the line its basically copy pasted with the same colors. Fresh Tops literally just re-vectorized it to resize it so thats a straight copy paste. I hand drew it in a doodle style and uploaded it to tumblr without a watermark slapped in front of it for people to enjoy and reblog or for other personal use not for people to steal and profit from. This has happened to me in the past with another doodle i did for school but it was never this big of a problem. To be honest, all i wanted was for these companies to stop. And it seems they have. That's all i wanted. I'm not used to having a lot of attention, i don't want it. I just wanted them to stop. 

They need to stop taking from the little people, thats why they pay their designers, if their designers are so incompetent that they can't simply make their own then maybe they need to hirer new ones. I'm actually a graphic design student and I loved urban and wanted to work with urban someday, so I saw it as a slap in the face. I don't really feel like stepping foot in there anymore. And as for Fresh Tops? I've heard of them before and I liked it, until i found out what happened and turns out I wasnt the first person they stole from either. 

So anyways, this is my side of the story. All I wanted was for them to stop, and they did. So I'm happy. 

Nichole875
Nichole875

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iamme
iamme

Urban is a horrible company. They are also anti civil rights and huge republican supporters so it's not surprising.

Jusssayin
Jusssayin

The thing is, the designers that claim to be "ripped off," case in point: Koerner, aren't the first people to create the design anyway. She ripped off someone else long before that, and got pissed when a corporation did the same.

And equating all this to rape? What a disgusting excuse for a human. All empathy I had was thrown out the window after that. You guys can't even source the original design. These claims are total crap.

verainnepaige
verainnepaige

Completely discrediting someone just because they used a choice of words you didn't agree with is the truly disgusting thing. It's one thing to draw your inspiration from someone else's piece of work, which is what I'm sure you mean when you say that she stole someone else's idea, and it's the same thing to have a similar idea, but that's not the case. These people copied her design straight to the finest detail and claimed it as their own and gave her no credit for it. That is much different than simply designing something that happens to be similar to a different work that she'd probably never even seen, or if she was she was inspired from and made it her own, her own style, with her own pen.

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