25 August 2015

Warning to all Artists... Beware of the latest Scammer

Important SCAM ALERT re Wallpart

Please read and let us know if you have been involved with this.

scammyWallpart

As some of you have probably heard from various gossip a new website has sprung up named "Wallpart" that supposedly is stealing people's artwork and selling it within the site.

We have been notified by several people about pieces of artwork being stolen and supposedly "available for sale" through Wallpart.com,and in the past 24 hours have seen many other artists make journals/submissions talking about finding their own work on there.
Naturally, the inclination of any artist finding their work available for sale without their consent is to head to the "Report Violation" link attached to every listing and file a complaint to have it removed.
PLEASE, DO NOT DO THIS ON WALLPART.COM'S WEBSITE.
There's some very devious bait-and-switch going on. They are not actually selling any of the images that appear on their site. Their "search function" is nothing but scraper software, which essentially just loads up hits from Google Images and displays them within a pre-built "shop" template. This is why every single piece on there has a title that is lifted directly from whatever gallery site or general website was hosting it.

  •  The dependence on Google Images is why doing a search for your own name will turn up different results each time, or possibly no results at all. Their "search" function never actually searches their own listings, because they have none. Confusingly enough, performing the same search multiple times often returns different results at different times throughout the day.
  • Their "Report Violation" link is actually a 100% phishing form. If you fill it out, no matter what you put there, you will be sending them a LOT more than you anticipated. This is actually the main purpose for the site's existence -- they completely anticipate artists being upset about their work supposedly being sold, so they developed a system to exploit those who complain.
  • Various pieces of malware and other malicious code have been found embedded throughout their pages at different times. This site is just bad news all around.
  • The site itself is hosted in Russia, and has already swapped web hosts 4 times in the past few months. Other artists have already sent complaints and reports to their contact page, with little luck. It looks like it's already been branded and caught in the past and is trying to keep itself alive.

So please -- DO NOT EVEN VISIT THIS SITE Do not give it page views, and most absolutely DO NOT FILL OUT ANY VIOLATION FORMS, EVEN IF THE ARTWORK ON THE PAGE IS YOUR OWN.

Instead, there is a Change.org petition asking for the domain to be stripped and brought down.

Please share the word around as much as possible so other artists don't potentially fall into their trap by thinking that their "Report Violation" page is actually what it claims to be. These people are pure scam artists, plain and simple. Avoid them at all costs.

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