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Fotorama Studio in Gardena, CA

Website: http://www.myfotorama.com/
Website 2: http://fotoramastudio.virb.com/
Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/IFOTORAMA/timeline
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/hpfotorama
Yelp:  http://www.yelp.com/biz/fotorama-gardena

The photographers stolen from I’ve spoken to state they do not work for this company.  I’m highly amused by all of the celebrity clients, especially Grace Kelly.

Also I wanted to thank those of you that take the time to click on an ad before you leave (or turn off Ad Block) and/or send in donations.  It helps keep this site going and me motived to keep up with it.  This week I’ve been slammed with submissions and I’m trying to stay on top of them… bear with me!

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  • Here we go again…

    I would never have guessed that the pics of Bella and Hermoine were stolen. 😉 And Grace Kelly?

    • Marc W.

      Yeah, that’s ballsy!

  • Here we go again…
  • Here we go again…

    Also known as Studio Ella aka Yoon Jong Lee

    http://companies.findthebest.com/l/1702712/Studio-Estella-Inc-in-Gardena-CA

    (323) 587-6611

    • captain-confuzzled

      and Studio Estella same person (Yoon Jong Lee), same phone

    • Jessica Edwards

      I’m the one who reported them because they stole my image of the football player (and left the logo). I called Sharon Lee, the owner. She did not answer and has not returned my calls. I also called the studio, but the owner nor manager was in today.

      • I bet my left and right paint……ball nut they are ignoring calls.

      • Stop trying to contact them and contact your lawyer.
        A registered letter form a lawyers office usually gets things going much faster.

  • Guest

    what i do not understand is, they left the watermark from the originating photographer?

    http://i0.wp.com/stopstealingphotos.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/Fotorama_0004.jpg

    • Jessica Edwards

      Yep. This is my image. I discovered it after their client’s sister tracked me down to ask me questions about her brother’s appointment with me (so she thought).

      • Lindsay11

        I’m so sorry you were stolen from and what a way to find out! Thanks for posting – I am always curious to know how these thieves were discovered. Is the client in your area? I hope they asked you to take their photos since they obviously liked your work!

    • It was a mistake on their part

  • captain-confuzzled

    I’m betting on the “intern did it” excuse on this one

  • Site must have been hacked

    • Photo Stealers

      They’re being catfished!

  • Jessica Edwards

    I’m the one who reported them because they stole my image of the football player (and left the logo). I called Sharon Lee, the owner. She did not answer and has not returned my calls. I also called the studio, but the owner nor manager was in today.

    • captain-confuzzled

      So sorry that you were victimized by these folks. If they are smart, they will return your calls and take down all the stolen work. Unfortunately, photo stealers are usually not very smart (leaving watermark on stolen photos, sheesh)

      • Here we go again…

        Wondering who the 30 staff photographers are…

    • Take them to court. I’m sure you could do with an extra 150000$ in the bank.

  • captain-confuzzled

    Not surprisingly they have an F on BBB due to not replying to complaints http://www.bbb.org/sanjose/business-reviews/photographers-commercial/fotorama-in-gardena-ca-13195263

  • U Really That Dumb?

    Let’s just nip this one in the bud, shall we? I know, it won’t work, but let’s pretend it will.

    To Fotorama Studio in Gardena, CA, please do NOT do the following:

    1. Flag comments on this listing. We mods will just put them back, so don’t waste your time.

    2. Lie. We have heard every excuse in the book, and you will not come up with something we haven’t heard before. You are not a special snowflake. Nothing you can say will justify what you did, so don’t bother.

    3. Accuse us of slander (because nobody ever figures out it has to be verbal to be slander). We stick to the facts, and if something is publicly available, it’s fair game.

    Please DO the following:

    1. Remove any and all stolen images.

    2. Apologize DIRECTLY to those from whom you have stolen. You owe them that much.

    3. Hope they don’t sue you. Copyright infringement is illegal under the law, and you can be sued for thousands of dollars for EACH stolen image. Yes, seriously.

    4. DON’T STEAL. It’s not complicated — if you didn’t take a photo and don’t have permission to use it from the actual copyright holder, then don’t use it. It’s that simple. Yes, seriously. You claim to be a photographer, so why on earth would you want to use others’ images, anyway? How does that make sense?

    And remember:

    1. If you do it again, you will be caught. Don’t forget — Google knows. Any time someone searched for your business, this listing will come up.

    2. Think about the actual victims here (no, not you) — those whose images you stole. You screwed them over. And frankly, that’s a pretty damned crappy thing to do.

    • peaceetc

      My, but I do like this post. 😉

      • U Really That Dumb?

        It would be really sad if you didn’t!

        • peaceetc

          Who said I have to like everything I write, huh? WHO?! 😉

  • U Really That Dumb?

    In my best Bill voice!

    New Rule!
    Whenever you use the term Catfished, you MUST include the attached image. Failure to do so will result in getting Paint Balled by @josephphilbert:disqus!

  • I was having some fun :p

    • U Really That Dumb?

      Well, let’s see… Close your doors. Quit. Get out of the business.
      Why? Because you: LIED, committed FRAUD, STOLE…
      But Joseph said I was hacked!

      Than go see a doctor because you have CRI!

      SMDH!

    • Now they want to thank me

      • U Really That Dumb?

        ROFLMAO!
        When are you going to tell them?

      • U Really That Dumb?

        I’m glad you found a charger! You were looking a little drained! 🙂

      • captain-confuzzled

        Joseph, what a guy! Their new paint,,ball pal!

    • peaceetc

      Holy fudge pops. I can’t believe those responses. Sharon Lee, if you’re out there — you weren’t hacked. Joseph knows that, I know that… even you know that. You knew those stolen images were on your stuff, because you put them there.

      If you think people’s comments and reviews on your page are the “hacked” part… again, no. Your page is publicly accessible, so people commented when they learned you had stolen images. No hacking involved.

      So catch a clue, scroll down a bit (http://stopstealingphotos.com/fotorama-studio-gardena-ca/#comment-1535435214 ), and stop stealing photos.

    • Wes Jones

      Catfished again? Any talk of discarded underwear? Does that make me sound pervy? 🙂

    • Christopher C.

      Please don’t do this. Why would you GIVE someone a false excuse to run with?

      Aside from that, direct contact is unnecessary and can easily constitute harassment. Let’s leave the discussion HERE. Don’t bring it to them.

      • I was simply gauging their comments. We all know they were not hacked.

        • Christopher C.

          That’s really not the point. The point is that now they have ammunition to formulate an excuse as to why this happened. “See? A fellow photographer contacted me to alert me to the issue!”

          That aside, unless you are one of the photographers that has had their images stolen nobody from here should be directly contacting anyone with a profiled post here, *especially* with “joke” emails. It’s harassment, and opens the door for others to start sending “joke” emails and potentially getting PS in hot water. Sure PS is not responsible for the actions of their users, but it gives an opportunity for the complaint to be made and PS to be dragged into the nastiness – especially when this stuff is done by a Moderator. Plus, it sure does reflect badly on our community when people do stuff like this.

          Again, let’s keep the discussion here. Don’t bring it to them. If the people stealing the photos want to join in the discussion here then by all means, rip them apart. But do it HERE, and do it solely based on the information we have HERE.

          Emailing them directly isn’t cool. 🙁

          • doncalifornia

            It’s not harassment.

          • Pete

            I wouldn’t risk it. Even though, by law, a website owner can’t be held responsible for the comments users make on that site. Joseph is a comment moderator and would be held to a higher regard, especially since that position implies that his actions are endorsed by PS.

          • You are correct won’t happen again.

          • Pete

            I know dude 🙂 You’re here to kick arse and take names!

  • Justin Case

    Stolen galleries are gone.

    As a studio that seems to do the majority of their business with public schools, Fotorama Studio Estella Inc of Gardena CA should be VERY careful in the future not to steal from other photographers or lie to their clients.

    As one ex-employee says in the review posted below: “No, I would not recommend this company to a friend – I’m not optimistic about the outlook for this company”

    • Here we go again…

      140 schools still to contact?

      • You can’t fix stupid

        We can divide and conquer –

  • karla

    It is very disturbing the comments and harassment to the company. Web designers tend to use sample photos with no regards to copyright and to have a school company be bombarded by insults and their credibility over something that may or may not be of their knowledge is horrifying. Deal with the problem at the root. Many people out there go the wrong way about things that end up hurting innocent people. Ask before you judge.

    It is also amusing how they received a supposed review from an ex employee. Not only are you as a person attacking this company but making up false statements.

    • Helena

      “Web designer did it” is not an excuse. You’re telling me a PHOTOGRAPHY company allowed a web designer to populate their website with images, that 1) the company did not provide and 2) that no one at the company subsequently checked? What absolute rubbish. If it is true they don’t deserve to be in business anyway. Sloppy.

    • captain-confuzzled

      It is very disturbing to me that you don’t believe that a company in business supposedly for over 20 years isn’t willing to take responsibility for what goes up on their website. We heard from one of the photographers that was stolen from, that they could not get a response from the company when they let them know that there was stolen work on the site. A photography company should be VERY on the ball about such a thing and respond immediately. It should not take a public posting on the photo stealers site to get them to take down the work. I bet that if the work of Fotorama suddenty showed up on some other website, with some other photographer claiming it was their work, then Fotorama would be hopping mad.

      Also, that review from an ex-employee was posted over 6 months ago. Long before the story here. It is extremely unlikely that there is any link between the two.

      • Marc W.

        Yes, the domain was registered December 2006. Almost 8 years ago. The
        Way Back Machine shows that they’ve had a website since at least March
        2, 2009. So, if they’ve had work for the past 5 years for their website,
        they (whoever they are) don’t need to steal and use other people’s photos.

    • Here we go again…

      The marketing director is Sharon LEE… the owner is Yoon Jong LEE… let’s just ASSume that they are related and that they probably have talked about site content.

    • peaceetc

      Karla, the vast majority of the time those outed on this site *have* been told privately to stop using stolen images. I seriously doubt this was news to them.

      And, no, a photography business does not allow their web designers to use random photos without authorizing everything that gets put on their site. A photography business pays attention to what photos are used to represent their company and work. A quality photography business does not allow photos they did not take to be used to represent their company. Fotorama has been in business for years, and they know what they are doing.

      So I would suggest *you* ask before you judge us, Karla. You obviously know nothing about what we do here.

    • MPR1776

      Dear Karla, please read this http://www.photoattorney.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Excuses-excuses.pdf Section 1 in particular covers the ‘My Web designer did it” excuse. And section 2 covers the excuse that the company is not liable because…

    • “My web designer did it” … wow, we’ve never heard that one before.

      In the end you (or whoever) is untimely responsible for what is posted on your site by your staff or contractors.

      1. I didn’t post the photo ˗ my website designer did.
      Ignorance isn’t an excuse to infringement, particularly when it’s your job to hire or otherwise supervise the infringer. If you hire a website builder who copies and displays a photo on your website without permission, then you’re “vicariously” liable for the infringement. The courts have held that “When a party has (1) the right and ability to supervise or control the infringing activity; and (2) a direct financial benefit from that activity, the party is vicariously liable for the infringement.” See Sony Corp. of America v. Universal City Studios, Inc., 464 U.S. 417, 418, 104 S.Ct. 774, 777 (1984).

      For example, in Corbis Corp. v. Nick Starr, the court awarded the plaintiff more than $100,000 for the copyright infringement and attorneys’ fees. In that case, a small local business hired a web designer to build the business’ website. Because the web designer used Corbis’ photos without a license, the Court held that both the web designer and the business owner were jointly liable for the infringement.

      Source: http://www.photoattorney.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/02/Excuses-excuses.pdf

      How can you, as a photography oriented business claim “placeholder images”. Did you not supply the designer with images to use?

      In the end it doesn’t even matter. Copyright was violated. It is your site. By law, your are responsible.

    • You can’t fix stupid

      OMG you are f’ing kidding right?? Blame the bloody designers. Hahaha like we haven’t heard that one before. You were caught stealing now man up and admit to it.

    • MPR1776

      Oh and as to your claim of ‘false statements’, please see the screen captured evidence above. Plus whoever was too dumb to remove the original photographer’s watermark before using the image.

    • Web designers use stock images SURE…but after a web Desinger will NEVER use your watermark on the images. FACT.
      Here is another point did you ever visit your site and say hmmm I don’t remember taking that image in my gallery … how did my watermark get there.

    • V323

      I”m going old school: Karla, liar liar pants on fire!

    • Christopher C.

      Considering caches of the site with its infringing photos go back to at least January, exactly how long were these watermarked “sample photos” going to be on the site?

      Translation: The “web designer” excuse is complete crap.

    • BullShite

      If a school, or business, or company cannot control what their “Web Designers” do they have NO BUSINESS OWNING A COMPANY. Suck it the hell up. If an “employee” makes a mistake that has the potential to do legal / financial / reputation damage to the business / company they are employed by, the BUCK STOPS WITH THE OWNER OF THE BUSINESS.

      If someone is going to sue, it is going to be THE OWNER….. not the “intern” not the “designer” not the “employee” not the “space aliens that came down and stole photos, put my water mark on them, and called them mine”.

    • Photo Stealers

      There’s a reason that excuse is part of the tagline for this site 🙂 However it has been a while since I’ve heard it so thank you for that.

    • FACT
      You have images on your site that don;t belong to you.

      THE END.

  • Justin Case

    Since some of you have missed this, Jessica Edwards posted this information on the PS facebook account. Since this is germane to the subject and facebook has a way of making things disappear, I think it belongs here.

    “If anyone is interested, the way this studio got busted is because a
    senior’s sister booked her brother’s appointment with this studio
    wanting their sports images. She used the logo from my image that was
    stolen to track me down and call me to discuss his upcoming session with me (so she thought).

    After much confusion, (s)he directed me to their website where I found my image
    and many other photographer’s images. I told her that they had stolen
    my image to use on their website. She immediately called and canceled
    his appointment. She claimed that she is going to contact her brother’s
    school (fotorama is their contract photographer) and tell them that the
    images on their website are stolen”

    Regardless of WHO may have put the images on the website, the owner and booker of Fotorama Studio had no problem exploiting the stolen image to book a session with someone who clearly thought that they were the studio who had originally produced the image. This is clear as day, since the client cancelled as soon as she found out that they hadn’t.

    And Karla, grow up. Pointing out the truth is not harassment. The ‘root’ cause here is a company that is behaving unethically in a profession that some of us actually care about. Using other people’s work to dupe your clients hardly makes one ‘innocent.’

    • Lindsay11
    • BullShite

      Also Karla, I HOPE you have this business actually registered with the state, with a EIN#, (I can’t find it at this point) because if you have employees like you claim you do, and you haven’t claimed them, the State takes that stuff seriously. You might want to be REALLY CAREFUL what excuses you use, especially when they are lies, because people pointing out you are a THIEF could be the least of your worries.

  • jbdisq

    On their Facebook page:

    Fotorama Studio
    50 minutes ago
    Hi everyone,
    Thanks for informing us about out 2 pages on our website.

    I was not aware that the two pages were incomplete & had a sample
    template that our web builder had set. He has been on medical leave for
    some time & I was not aware that the pages were incomplete.
    Totally my fault for not checking it in detail.
    We have temporarily put the pages down.

    My deepest apologies to those who’s pictures were part of the template. Thanks for your understanding!

    • V323

      Wow. That’s some big ball of lie there. So now templates come with stolen images? In a way, I SO hope that’s true, because damn, what a sizable case the orinial artists would have against the template seller.
      Alas, all a bunch of hogwash.

      • BullShite

        That’s ok, all it takes is a quick google’n to see that this is a lie. Nice try though, I’ve never seen an excuse like that before! 😉

      • That dam watermarking app strikes again.

        • Helena

          Still waiting for that to materialise.

    • peaceetc

      Those pesky web designers, always using stolen images on photography business sites, and then magically hiding the stolen content from the business owner. I hate it when they do that.

    • O medical leave …. Sure..

    • “had a sample template that our web builder had set.”
      So … the webmaster did it again eh … he used a “template” image he stole and you never replaced?

      FFS.

      As a minority representative of webmasters / web designers and communication people (my day job is all 3 for a Federal dept) here in the cult … I call bullshit!

    • Wonder if the web designer will sue them for Libel (assuming he had nothing to do with this).?

      Wonder if they realize that it doesn’t matter in the eye of the law that the designer did it and they are still potentially on the hook for over 1,000,000$ in fines and damages.

  • Guest

    How they got busted:

    • Jessica Edwards

      Not sure why that ^ says it was posted by “guest”?

      • U Really That Dumb?

        It doesn’t. It shows you.

        • Jessica Edwards

          Ah. To me, it shows as “guest”. Thanks for clarifying.

          • U Really That Dumb?

            Either way, we know it’s you!
            Thank you for posting!

      • U Really That Dumb?

        Oops, now it shows guest.

    • U Really That Dumb?

      We already know they are not the sharpest tools in the shed.

    • U Really That Dumb?

      I love how her friends are coming out of the woodwork and defending her on Facebook. They all have CRI!

      • Big Ron

        Where do you see that? I don’t see any friends responding on the FB page.

    • Marc W.

      Sounds like the local TV news organizations need a phone call.

      • U Really That Dumb?

        The schools will be up shit creek if they knew about this and failed to notify authorities.

        • Justin Case

          My guess is the schools are who the facebook post is really aimed at. If you are new to this nonsense, a vendor claiming ‘our web designer did it’ sure sounds plausible.

          Sadly, we all know how little water that one carries.

    • Justin Case

      ‘Their pictures are nothing like the ones they took from you. Your work is amazing’

      I think that says it all right there. Thanks again for posting Jessica.

  • Wes Jones

    It would be very satisfying to hear that at least one of the thieves outed by PS were sued.

  • doncalifornia

    Hey so I am curious, anyone contact any of the following schools yet?? : Lynwood, Northridge, Hollenbeck MS, Burbank MS, Marquez, Pacoima, Gardena, Civitas, Banning, Fremont, Bravo, Banning, Luskin, Manual Arts, Hawkins, South East, Roybal… I think the list goes on. I think these schools and districts would want their legal departments to take a look at the fact that Fotorama has been using images stolen from other photographers to represent their business. Just sayin’

  • Anyone know of any follow up on this? Seems like so much could have happened….

  • Stopstealingphotos
  • Stopstealingphotos

    Do not be racist , be like Mario. He’s an italian plumber, made by Japanese people, who speaks english, looks like a mexican, jumps like a black man, and grabs coins like a jew!

  • You can’t fix stupid

    She reported my review. She has been quiet and not commenting on any posts. Sent a troll out to tell us that using an image for “private use” is okay. _ dumb and dumber

    • captain-confuzzled

      what I find amazing is that most of the FB reviews and the most recent posts still have many comments that talk about the photo stealing that have not been removed. I’m glad they are still there, but geez, isn’t anyone paying attention? Why only have your review removed?

      • You can’t fix stupid

        I have no idea why mine was removed. Maybe they reported them all and mine just so happened to be the one they removed.

  • U Really That Dumb?

    ATTN: To those about to steal, those that have stolen, and those that say nothing ever gets done!

    In a different jurisdiction or a different judge, she would have received all of it. She may still on appeal.

    http://sassy-designs.net/blog/?p=443