A sad day in the Final Cut Pro X ecosystem as a row has broken out over the copying, publishing and selling of a copyrighted product. We won't go into the exact details here, but we will comment on the growing problem of copyright violation.
Everything is a remix right? In some sectors maybe, but video and television are obviously very visual businesses and copies, clones and 'me toos' are easy to spot. You might say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, maybe. The content of this site gets used (and translated) illegally on a whole host of competing websites. We see it as lazy journalism on their side and log all similar articles to build up a case against them, hard to prove though.
But what if a product is a direct copy from another company that has just been flipped, slowed down, scaled and then packaged up for resale?
As we mentioned, we won't go into company specifics, you'll have to do the exceptonally easy task of looking on Twitter or Facebook for the spreading story. We have been getting notifications from various parties over the last week of this impending problem and it looks like today will see the story explode on the internet.
Is the FCPX ecosystem becoming a victim of its success? The majority of plugins for Final Cut Pro X are written in Motion and are therefore easily copied by anybody who wants to. So what is stopping somebody from downloading as many free plugins from the web as they can, packaging them up into a product and then selling them online?
Unlikely? This is exactly what one unscrupulous character did with iMovie products before Apple ruined his wheeze by changing the app so it wouldn't accept third party products. We have had more than one conversation with FCPX plugin writers who at their chagrin think their products have been used as a base for a competing product.
Do free plugin makers publish T&Cs? We don't think so, maybe they should.
So what can be done? We are sure that legal action is going to be taken by the party whose copyright has been violated. A DCMA to the site owner and hosting company (who have to act on it by law) will ensure that the product and maybe even the whole site gets taken down. A public confession, customers refunded, a smack on the wrists and then back to work would be another solution.
We think everybody has a role to play in keeping an eye out for the copying of products. The plugin market is becoming a race to the bottom with prices tumblng and sizeable discounts being advertised all the time. If we are not careful it will become difficult to differentiate between the good and the bad, the original and the copy.
And that will be bad for us all.