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My Magical Moments in Palm Springs, California and/or St. Louis, Missouri

Website: http://www.my-magical-moments.com/index.html
Yelp:  http://www.yelp.com/biz/my-magical-moments-photography-st-louis
Backpage: http://visalia.backpage.com/CreativeServices/photographer-available-for-any-occasion-602-465-6580/7933288
Craigslist 1:  http://palmsprings.es.craigslist.org/crs/4815718176.html
Craigslist 2: http://stlouis.es.craigslist.org/crs/4776679885.html

I thought that the submissions to Photo Stealers were slow due to the holidays aka the busiest time of the year for photographers.  I was wrong.  Turns out that Google has been marking most of my submissions from this website as spam.  Sigh.  I went through some of the backlog and this submission was in there.  It’s a doozy.  I guess it is a good thing it was filed in the spam folder because in December I wouldn’t have had the time to worry about this one.  At least now I can source while weddings are importing and exporting so there’s that hidden blessing.

Nicole Rios runs My Magical Moments and it’s so magical I can’t quite even figure out if she’s in Bakersfield, California or St. Louis, Missouri.  She’s got running ads for both areas so I’m putting both locations in.  I’m guessing there was a recent move or maybe she’s got family in one location and visits frequently?  Who knows.

This PS’er is quite prolific, quite possibly one of the most I’ve every featured on this site.  Imagine my surprise when I stumbled across one of my own images on her Craigslist ad.  Of course it’s one of the first professional sessions I ever had and the circumstances were beyond what I was anticipating (message me for the laughable details). Why is it that people steal the images that suck the most?  Anyway, there’s a lot here so let’s get to it.  This one took a lot of time!!!  I didn’t get through all the galleries because screen capping them was difficult and very time consuming.  Note that many of the images she’s not only removed the watermark but also edited the images from their original state.

Warning:  there are some NSFW images below the cut!

Website:

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Part of an ad campaign for Harrods

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Yelp:

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Craigslist 1:

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Craigslist 2:

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  • 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 MY MAGICAL MOMENTS IN PALM SPRINGS, CALIFORNIA AND/OR ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI,

    Welcome to the world of being outed by Photo Stealers (Stop Stealing Photos). It is our goal to root out and put a stop to photography copyright infringement. Your outing is one step towards that goal. You used photos you were not authorized to use, which is illegal. You’re probably confused and angry, so let us try to help you get a handle on things by giving you a checklist of things you should be doing and not doing.

    Please do NOT do the following:

    1. React with anger, go into denial, or start in with the threats. We already have the evidence against you. The best thing you can do for you is to be honest and to deal with this head on.

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

    3. Lie or offer excuses. We have heard every excuse in the book (really, we have. One guy even blamed Obama.), 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.

    4. 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.

    5. Create fake accounts to defend yourself. We will see through it, and it’s just a waste of time.

    Please DO the following:

    1. Remove any and all stolen images immediately. That means now. Right now. And no, simply hiding them from public view doesn’t count. They need to be completely deleted.

    2. Apologize DIRECTLY to those from whom you have stolen (and tell the truth!), and offer monetary compensation. You used their images in a professional setting to try to make money, so 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, if not hundreds of thousands of dollars, for EACH stolen image. Yes, seriously.

    4. Apologize publicly, on all the sites and social media accounts where the stolen work appeared. Again, you owe it to your clients, fans, friends, etc., to be honest.

    5. Learn about how copyright works. Look up the Digital Millenium Copyright Act. What you may think you know and what is actually the truth are probably two different things (as in: no, posting someone else’s photo as “inspiration” is not a valid reason, nor is it good enough to provide credit. If you don’t have express permission to post someone else’s image, then you don’t post it. That’s it, the end).

    6. 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. We go back and check old listings to make sure they haven’t started stealing again. And don’t forget — Google knows. Anytime 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. And think about the clients you’ve mislead by presenting a false front. They’re victims, too.

  • CrackerJacker

    The additional vignetting REALLY makes it shine. You could learn something, there!

    😉 So very 😉

  • V323

    Epic amount of theivery. #golfclap

    • GlennMcQuaig

      That’s putting it mildly! Lol!

  • Conch Creative

    Thank you so much for bringing this to our attention. You do a great job! She’s stolen our photos from Belize. I wonder if she has ever taken a photograph herself. Unbelievable. We encounter one of these every few months or so. It’s amazing how many ‘photographers’ out there do this. Thank you for helping to expose them!

    • Photo Stealers

      There is a few images that I THINK she took herself, but they are buried pretty deeply.

  • MPR1776

    Whois Record for My-Magical-Moments.com

    http://whois.domaintools.com/my-magical-moments.com

  • Christopher C.

    The domain registration lists a “Nicole Rios” out of Sunnyvale CA as the owner, and the photo gallery is copyrighted by a “Nicole Smith.” (Hilariously enough, the gallery is ©2023.)

    The phone number and address for the domain registrant is connected to a LOT of shady business dealings, but I suspect that’s due to the registrar’s “private registration” against the whois record. The number of scammy operations that come up on a search for the address is amazing.

    I’ve come up with an additional Wedding Wire URL: http://www.weddingwire.com/biz/my-magical-moments-apple-valley/5fbaca6606510a43.html

    Interestingly enough, that page lists a third operations city: Apple Valley, CA. Further digging yields a full address, per the Yellow Pages:

    22838 Sitting Bull Rd.,
    Apple Valley, CA 92308

    • Christopher C.

      And another CraigsList URL for St. Louis:

      http://stlouis.craigslist.org/crs/4783361919.html

    • Photo Stealers

      I’m glad I’m not the only one finding multiple locations for this photographer.

    • Conch Creative

      It all looks highly dodgy.

  • Penmar
    • Penmar

      That phone number is a mobile number out of Phoenix, Az

  • GlennMcQuaig

    This could be a huge one. Funny though, considering the sheer amount of theft, there’s no cheesy FB site for her. You’d think they’d be all over that, too.

    • xma1e

      It’s not uncommon for people not to know how to work Facebook. They probably don’t know how to use a camera either hence the thieving.

    • Trust me i looked really hard for one could not even find a personal page.
      Sent from a iPhone, please excuse the brevity and typos.

  • Martie Botes

    I gave her a piece of my mind on the contact sheet, on her website.

    Do you notify these photographers?

    • Photo Stealers

      I notified all of the ones I could – many make it damn near impossible to find contact info so there is a few I didn’t notify.

  • Peter Kelly

    Looks like the pictures have been removed, as they just show up as blanks for me, unless they appear as pop-ups to my browser and are blocked.

    Anyway, keep up the good work PS!

    • Photo Stealers

      Main slideshow still is intact. The only galleries down are Newborn and Wedding. The other two are full of stolen images, I just didn’t have time to source them yesterday.

  • Conch Creative

    I contacted Wix, who were hosting the site and it looks like the photos are being removed. Best we can hope for I guess.

  • xma1e

    I also contacted Wix via their abuse form and referred them to this site too as “evidence”, they said they’d investigate. Looks like I wasn’t the only one to report them. 🙂

  • Conch Creative

    Thanks so much!

  • Patrick Mitchell

    The WIX site is still up full of Stolen photos. Or returned to what it was.

    • Justin Case

      Yup, you’re right. What a scumbag.

  • Justin Case

    I’m sure your father would be proud of you Nicole.

    (from one of her fraudulent advertisements)

    “Q. How did you decide to get in your line of work?

    A. My father was a photographer for the Sears catalog (when it stll existed). Yes, I am a product of the Sears Tower (when it was called that). I went to college to design architecture and quickly realized my talent was on the computer, not in the field.”

    Obviously, it’s a lot easier to steal the hard work of others with a computer rather than out ‘in the field’

  • I got an email from another photographer in from another country this morning alerting me to one of my portraits showing up on this persons site. Checked it out and sure enough thats my portrait! Want to here the best part??? I took that portrait I am also in that portrait along with my husband and six children!!! My portrait is the family on the red couch. I have just recently gone through a copyright issue with a client I had, law is so shady here and not helpful at all.

    Anyhow I sent the little señorita bitch a contact info went like this :

    Name: your worst nightmare
    email: your worst nightmare.com
    Number: your worst nightmare
    info: Hello Bitch. Not only did you steal my portrait , I am in the portrait. I have sent all the information from my sites and stopstealingphotos.com to WIX to shut your ass down. Have a nice day. Sincerely Your Worst Nightmare.

    I also reported her to WIX. If anyone finds out who this fraud is bring it to my attention Im want to go after her for advertising my work, and me and my children on the web without permissions and copyrights.

    freaking losers no morals and no class

    Thank you to this site I never knew existed until today brought to my attention by another photographer across the seas.

    http://cassandrasassephotography.com

  • Just an update! I was emailed by WIX from my letter yesterday I sent them all specifics on this person from this site and mine. I told them that it was in the best interest to investigate this person with the links provided within 5 minutes I got another email telling me they removed my image from their servers. I went and checked and they yanked her whole site down , hope it stays that way. Again thank you for reporting all this on your site here!

  • Muppets UnitedUK

    They changed providers: http://www.whois.com/whois/my-magical-moments.com

    they are still around. New set of images are up and now they are using a javascript to slowly fade in and out the images.

    • Me, Myself and I

      Not Javascript … it’s a god damned animated GIF!!! The thing is HUGE! The image is 82MB!!! HOLY SHIT!!!

      They are f’ing insane!!!

      • Who the hell uses animated gif files to show photographs?? Geez

        Sent from a iPhone, please excuse the brevity and typos.

    • captain-confuzzled

      yeah, new set of stolen images up *smh*

    • Marc W.
  • Susan

    Most of what I looked at on her website is posted above. She didn’t even re brand, just put all the stuff back up again? This idiot thief needs to be put on blast.