Media Novak

This isn’t quite a photographer but since the company is run by a photographer FOR photographers I’m going to let it slide because in my world, it’s close enough.  For those that don’t know Media Novak, it’s a marketing company that sells websites, branding and the like to photographers.  However, many, if not all of those examples were actually stolen from other designers and photographers online. 

This all came to me because they were stupid enough to steal from The Law Tog.  When she contacted them to tell them to take her branding photos down, they told her they were promoting her business (mind you, no credit was given on the photos) and took the image down.  A couple weeks later and it’s back up again and Rachel went public with it.  When she went public with it other photographers saw their own work on their site and some even recognized their words.

This blog isn’t going to have the usual crazy extent of show and tell because by the time I was notified they had already taken down their blog and many images weren’t working.  However I am showing what I have, if you have screen captures or anything you’d like to add to the story let me know.  They’ve also taken down their Facebook page as well as their entire portfolio on their website (their website makes me motion sick so I’m trying not to spend too much time on it).

This is the original post showing Rachel’s own branding.  The image was taken by Rachel, the design was by On the Spot Studio.  Neither are affiliated with Media Novak.

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The branding on Media Novak’s blog.

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The branding on Media Novak’s Twitter (this has been posted dozens of times there).

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It’s also on their other “Photo Websites” twitter as well.

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Just for giggles, here’s what shows up when you search the image on Google.  Normally I use the cache but they’ve disabled quite a lot so the cache isn’t showing images, just text at this point but the image is still searchable meaning it’s on their server still somewhere. 

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The original emails.

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Not only are they stealing images and examples of their design work but they are also plagiarizing content. 

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While it doesn’t include Rachel’s logo, their Pinterest was full of the stolen images and content but they are quickly deleting the evidence.

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What their Facebook looked like before taking it down.

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The original cover photo which has a few images that do not appear to have started with them, no credit given (as they are all over Pinterest finding the source is difficult).

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Apparently there is a blog they stole but I didn’t get to it before they deleted everything. 

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  • Tara Eveland

    Great story! I am thankful you are getting this out there for Rachel! I do have copies and screenshots of their facebook before it was unpublished. I am guessing they did not delete it with their nearly 10k fans, but merely took it down after the onslaught of Rachel Brenkes supporters started calling them out. Such a shame as the lawtog does SO MUCH for our community of photographers that she doesn’t have to do, she should only be respected and thanked, not stolen from. Such a shame.

  • Annemarie W.

    Here is a link to the LOVE sign in their cover image. http://www.shanty-2-chic.com/2012/06/diy-wall-art-love.html

  • mk

    Interesting. I went back and looked through their newsletter to which they had auto-subscribed me and, doing some Googling, it looks like a lot of the text from their blog posts was lifted from other people’s articles as well.

  • Bethany O’Connor

    I have often wondered how photographers find out that their work has been stolen. You mentioned it’s possible to search an image on Google. Do you just search the original title of the image? Or is there a better way to do it? Thanks! 🙂

    • peaceetc

      Go here: http://www.google.com/imghp and then click on the little camera icon. You will then be given the option of uploading an image for which you want to search, or to provide a URL. Then Google will try to match that image, or bring up similar images.

      • Bethany O’Connor

        Wow! That’s incredible. Thanks for taking the time to reply! 🙂

        • peaceetc

          You’re welcome. There’s also Tineye (http://tineye.com/). I’m not sure how their results compare to Google’s, but it might be worth using both.

  • Mandie Haberman

    WHOA, this company sent me an email, too, promoting their business. YUCK. Rachel B, hope you gave them hell.

  • Anthony Sadpanda

    Curious as to why you exposed one thief? But erased screengrabs of another? Not going to mention it again, just curious?

    • peaceetc

      I’m not Photo Stealers, but those screencaps you posted could have been easily doctored to try to make someone look bad. Being able to verify something like that as being real before putting it out there into the world is important. That’s not the same as what happens on Photo Stealers, and in my opinion, it doesn’t belong here.

  • Stacie Kurt Jensen

    The story is a bit crazy. I am friends with Rachel. When I saw that they had Rachel’s logo all over their site I felt safe using them for our new logo design. I contacted them, was excited to get started, almost sent the deposit but felt this rather strong urge to ask Rachel before I sent the money how her experience was. The reason I was determined to do this is because it felt “off” when they asked me to send a paypal payment with the paypal fee. This wouldn’t be common practice, normally a business will send a paypal invoice rather than us have to do it. Anyhow, thankfully I knew the common practice and couldn’t understand why they were sending me “paypal fees”.

  • Alexandra
  • Melinda Potter

    This is so messed up! I clicked on their site and read their information knowing what I know, and it was difficult to get through without getting ill. Their website also doesn’t work on my phone or iPad, only text appears, I had to wait until I could get on my computer to check it out. I find that really funny considering. I sure hope not too many people are hurt by this business before they finally give up and go away. So sad

  • Christina Cericola

    Wow, just wow. Stealing from a lawyer? Do they punch cops as well? They are either the most brazen people in the world or the stupidest.

  • They are still on facebook, https://www.facebook.com/MediaNovakWebsiteDesign. They sent me an email via 500px complimenting me and thanking me for complimenting them when I never had, then tried to sell me stuff. Always thought they were a bit off.

  • Jeffrey Lee

    I get flooded by emails from this company promoting their goods and it always seems so sales pitch oriented, very much a turn-off. I’m not actually surprised they are ripping off other people’s work.

  • Theresa

    I just got an email from this company that they checked out my site and thanking me for the Twitter follow (which I don’t follow). Now I need to watch out for them and stealing from me, ugh.

  • Dean

    These guys have been spamming me for a while now. I “unsubscribe” each time but nothing seems to matter – the spam still comes. I’m now going to be forced to contact their hosting company and registrar to try to get some relief from the constant spamming. I googled their name and found your site. Sad to hear that not only are they spammers, they are also thieves!

    • Joseph Philbert

      O really …hmmmm

  • T Eastman

    Just got an email from them about my portfolio which is not on the web currently. My email address is basically unpublished so I’m curious how they got that one. Any ways… I figured I’d Google them first. Glad I did.
    t eastman

  • I was just getting ready to pay their deposit for their premium package and then decided to Google reviews. Has anyone actually used them for logo/branding design?

    • Photo Stealers

      I haven’t had any contact with anyone who has used them recently. I know around a year ago people were not happy with their service but it may be better now.

      • My business partner and I ordered logo design through them and they have most recently delivered the final product (after we did the majority of the work) and we may have a problem, but I am really hoping they follow through and fix it before we have a major problem. Darren, if you’d like, feel free to message me/email and I will let you know or anyone else who wants an update.

        If I don’t forget I will post an update.

  • barque

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/126275540@N05/ can’t tell if there is anything plagiarized or stolen because it’s all private

  • barque

    https://flipboard.com/@markstokesm6v58/medianovak-week-review-nk8178ojy lots of articles, again, no idea if the images and text are theirs or not, just posting the site here.