Interesting ethical question - Ferrari Life
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post #1 of 22 Old 08-19-2009, 09:45 PM Thread Starter
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Interesting ethical question

Hello everyone,

I have an ethical question for you -- would like to hear your opinions:

I recently stumbled on a web site for a company that offers products and services for certain cars, and on this web site they are promoting a product of theirs and using a photo of one of MY cars to advertise their product.

I don't know them, never did, and my car never received any product or service from them (not in my ownership, and not with any previous owner). On their web site, they have a heading for the product, and below it is the photo of my car, implying that my car has received this product/service, when in reality this particular part of my car is factory original.

The photograph is not mine. It was taken by the previous owner of my car and posted on a web forum back when he owned it.


Question 1: If you were in my shoes, would you say anything? If so, what?

Question 2: Does this make you question the vendor's integrity or honesty with regard to the rest of their products/services?


Now, to throw a bit of a curve ball . . .

I'm interested in that particular product, because I would like to do something about it on my very car that is pictured on their site! (ironic, no? ) There isn't much market for a solution to this issue with the car; it's not something that a bunch of vendors have or carry; there are a few scattered solutions for this, none of which are ideal or as good as the original. This one looks like it might be promising...


Question 3: They are offering a solution for what I would like to correct on my car; can I trust them?

Question 4: Should I not by on principle alone (assuming the product is worthy)?


What do you think?

Thanks,

Tony

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post #2 of 22 Old 08-20-2009, 12:37 AM
 
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Answer 1: Yes very much so. If only to make them aware that you know that what they're showing on their site is a fake. If I were you, I would tell them in the most neutral tones that it is my car that they're showing, and that I know that nothing has ever been done to the piece of the car you are referring to. If for no other reason, then at least just to get them on their toes.

Answer 2: Yes it makes me question them. There is obviously something wrong here but it might be something simple as a switch-up with pictures so I would let them have the benefit of the doubt. If they give me a probable and logical answer (a mistake is easily made, we are after all only human) as to why they use the picture of my car (I'm still in your skin here Tony) then I might reconsider. Especially if they rectify the situation on their website. But the explanation really does have to be a damn good one.

Answer 3: Depending on their answer to the first inquiry (see above), you might. But again... the explanation really does have to ring true.

Answer 4: You should not buy on principle, but NOT because of the principle that they used the wrong picture, but because they used YOUR car. You can proof that it's your car, you know that the car was never treated with this stuff, so I think you are entitled to some free samples (or whatever the product is) or they will suffer some economic difficulties because you can destroy their reputation. So it's not that you shouldn't buy because they misled you, but you should not buy because you should get it for free. After all... they're trying to make money over YOUR car without your permission. This all still hinges on their answer to the first neutral mail though. You might not want to threaten them to begin with, but rather keep it as an ace. If they're smart, they will understand that you have some power in this matter. Be sure to keep some screen shots of the website though. They might change it without you being anything the wiser or better off. (yes... I'm not above some blackmail ) Aw, f*ck it... I'd want a sample just for the hell of it.

I really want to know what it is they're selling !!! Tell me please !
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post #3 of 22 Old 08-20-2009, 03:15 AM
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Tony,
I tend to agree with Basosz. I'd be a bit put out if I saw my car being used as an advertisement for a product that I didn't even use. In fact even if I had used the product I'd be put out about it.

I would definitely contact the company and make a complaint about the use of the picture. Not sure of the legalities of what they are doing - suppose it is different for diffierent countries, but I think I would try to find out if there was any kind of a copyright infringement before I made the call (even if to just keep it as a trump card up the sleeve).

And I definitely agree with Bas that you should be receiving the product for free if it is something you actually want for your car. In fact there could be a reasonable compromise that can be reached between you all in the end.

And just like Bas - I'm interested in what kind of site it is and what they are selling!!!! Go on post the link....
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post #4 of 22 Old 08-20-2009, 06:54 AM
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Hard saying without more info or seeing the site. I think I would be disturbed if I saw one of my pictures that I took being used without my knowledge. Having said that, when I post a picture on the internet it pretty much becomes public domain and there is not much I can do about it other than asking them to remove it if it were offensive to me. In this case the photo wasn't even yours.

A few years back one of the local tire companies asked if they could use my car in one of their ads I said sure. Of course I know them over there. But they hadn't put tires on my car. They do sell tires that fit my car so the ad would show that they are capable of performing this service. If they indeed do sell the product that fits on your car and they just used an image they found on the web to dress up their site, I don't know if I'd have any issue with it.

As for the credibility issue, depends. If a company is selling wax and just show a picture of a shiney car that would be different than if they said, "This car was polished with our wax." when in fact it wasn't.

Post the link.

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post #5 of 22 Old 08-20-2009, 08:02 AM
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I am in agreement with all responses and would add that you have a bargaining chip with the company. I suggest you use it wisely and soon for what ever value you can get from it.

Lane

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post #6 of 22 Old 08-20-2009, 09:26 AM
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Tony, I would start off only with #1. In a neutral manner I would point out that they are using a picture of your car without permission and it has never been treated etc with the product they are advertising. See what the response is and then go from there. It could be a harmless mistake or it could be intentional.
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post #7 of 22 Old 08-20-2009, 09:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony K View Post
..........

The photograph is not mine. It was taken by the previous owner of my car and posted on a web forum back when he owned it.


Question 1: If you were in my shoes, would you say anything? If so, what?
Nothing to say, as the pic was authorized at a time you have no copyright, nor authorization to give/deny such. The copyright was given by the person who had authority: Sorry you have no rights on how that pic is used, only copyright persons does, and he about gave up those rights when posting on WWW, UNLESS he stated so otherwise on the posting or TOU stated such.

As for contacting them, sure if you want, but if I were them, I'd thank you and state I would do what I feel under copyright.

Quote:
Question 2: Does this make you question the vendor's integrity or honesty with regard to the rest of their products/services?
Unless he violated the copyright's terms, there is no integrity missing. People shoot pics of mountains and hotels and whatever in their ads and it can be considered editing/construction, but not necessarily an integral issue. Don't believe it's a bad thing. Maybe I don't believe most ads I read in general construction unless some guy, like Mother's etc. have a guy polishing a 250GT [seen in Cavallino] etc.

Quote:
Question 3: They are offering a solution for what I would like to correct on my car; can I trust them?
None of the above would qualify as discounting trust or quality. I'd try the product and see what it's worth.

Quote:
Question 4: Should I not by on principle alone (assuming the product is worthy)?
shuks, should have read this first, see my above response

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post #8 of 22 Old 08-21-2009, 12:15 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pete04222 View Post
As for the credibility issue, depends. If a company is selling wax and just show a picture of a shiney car that would be different than if they said, "This car was polished with our wax." when in fact it wasn't.
The problem with this is that it could look misleading. When someone sells wax and they have a website saying "We sell wax, look at this car" they are not actually saying that they waxed the car, but they certainly suggest it. While all of it may still be 100% true, it's still misleading. But then again... that's the whole point of advertising I suppose
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post #9 of 22 Old 08-21-2009, 03:29 AM Thread Starter
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I think the form of misleading that Basosz describes above is unethical.


The web address is www [dot] porschepalace [dot] net


If you scroll down to Interior/Upholstery and look at "The Original Re-Dash", the photo he is showing is of the interior of my 944. If you click on the photo, it takes you to a page just about the "re-dash". Scroll down -- you come to the heading "1985.5 and on 944 Re-Dash" -- and right under it is a big photo of my interior again. And it's quite obvious to me that on the red with black interior early 944 a few cars above mine that it has no "re-dash" -- you can see the cracks!

To me, it's starting to look like something he tried that was not successful. I'm getting the impression that he did this a number of years ago, sold a handful, and it didn't work out or just fizzled. Read this link:

http://www.lotusbuzz.com/forums/show...1317#post21317

Quite frankly, he is a horrible communicator, as he replied to assumptions he made, and not to my questions.


I'm reaching my own conclusion that it isn't that good after all. I'll eventually find some solution to the cracks on my 944 dashboard.

But honestly, to put those photos of other people's cars is deceptive. It implies that he has actually done/sold that many at the very least; it also implies that those cars in the photos are displaying the "Re-Dash," and it looks to me that at most 2 or 3 of them are. In a situation like this, any honest vendor would display his own work of actual cars receiving the service, not swiping photos from the internet.


Rik -- I couldn't care less about copyright and such stuff -- this was not about using images without permission -- that's something that FerrariChat douchebags get up in arms about!


Well, I wonder if it's worth my time to say anything to him . . . I think his own merits will on their own take him as far as he will go. . . .

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post #10 of 22 Old 08-21-2009, 08:49 AM
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Tony: Thought the pic copyright was where you were going...see it's a much deeper issue.


rik

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post #11 of 22 Old 08-21-2009, 09:44 AM Thread Starter
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lah!

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post #12 of 22 Old 08-21-2009, 10:42 AM
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Is it just me or is the main car on that (Porsche) site's home page a BMW Z coupe?????
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post #13 of 22 Old 08-21-2009, 06:32 PM
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Well, as far as the picture goes…it would depend on the web site, what they sell and how reputable they are.

Since im looking into a Porsche 911 for a daily summer driver, I though I would look over the web site….

What did I find? Not much unfortunately.

Here we go…first off…

A 2000 BMW Z3 wagon as a Porsche home page picture claiming excellence.
Second, an Abarth logo, you click on it and get to a welfare page of a junk Porsche 944 with wannabe Testarossa parts on the rear window also claiming V12 performance where it looks like Sanford and Son’s junk yard. To make it even better and the bottom a cheap java script scrolling saying “The MMC SCORPION II........Built for Speed........ Built for YOU !........ Rock You Like a Hurricane” and lets not forget, the Scorpion song Rock you like a Hurricane…..playing in the background…..really…im not kidding…..HAHAHAHA!!!!!!!

Back to the main page…on the right, Vertical doors. Second one got my attention, gullwing doors, I clicked on it….you get the vertical door page…ummm LOSER….

Decals…you can only buy “Porsche” and “Boxster” and he used Photoshop over the pictures.

Select any model on the home page and you get another list to the left….more cheap flea market top quality stuff there too.

So the re-buckets…no page
Supercharger…no page but brings you to the gauge page.
Electronics page…welfare alarm systems… (I have had Viper Alarms on all my cars since 1990 and I have NEVER had an issue or a false alarm under any conditions).

Second electronics page OMG…garbage…junk stuff…HAHAHA even silicone hose kits for sale on that page..
Under electronics get ready… CB radio….really? I can’t count how many Porsches I have seen with K40 on the rear spoiler and twin truckers on a Cayenne….hahahaha!!!!!!

Speakers…..no much to talk about
Wuffers HAHAHAHAHA can’t even spell that right….checked the list and it’s ALL garbage. When you sell Pyramid equipment…..sad. Dont let the fake listing of watts fool you...That's like using duct tape to make racing stripes on a Porsche and say it was a custom paint job.

On the wheels page….I saw a nice 8 lug set that would look great on my Truck. Never knew Porsche had 8 lug wheels….must be for the Turbo models.

Basically this tells me this guy is full of crap, his web site is extremely below standards, something you would have seen 10 years ago when web pages started to come out. The equipment he sells is seriously cheap and of poor quality. I have been in car audio and gadgets for 20 years and the stuff I saw on his page we used to laugh at then and it’s still around.

So my opinion…if my car was displayed on his web page I would have him remove it but that's just me.


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Mario

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“I build cars for young men that only old men can afford” - Enzo Ferrari

Last edited by Magnum6464; 08-21-2009 at 06:43 PM.
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post #14 of 22 Old 09-13-2009, 07:20 PM Thread Starter
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Quick little update:

I asked the business owner, via the web forum, to remove the photo of my car.

The forum moderator deleted my post and told me to handle it privately.

LOL.

I thought it was quite relevant to the other forum members since this guy is trying to sell them stuff . . .


- T

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post #15 of 22 Old 09-13-2009, 07:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony K View Post
Quick little update:

I asked the business owner, via the web forum, to remove the photo of my car.

The forum moderator deleted my post and told me to handle it privately.

LOL.

I thought it was quite relevant to the other forum members since this guy is trying to sell them stuff . . .


- T
What a tool! (Not you, Tony, the owner...)

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post #16 of 22 Old 09-14-2009, 07:43 AM
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Tony...

For clarity sake...is the photo of your car posted in the forum where you requested he take it down, or by a link to a differant location.

If the shot is on the forum I'm amazed your post was taken down but not the whole "offending" thread.

If your shot is not on the forum, I'd agree with the Moderator. Not sure that public discussion is warranted. Likely to turn in to a pissing contest making both parties look bad.

Lane

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post #17 of 22 Old 09-14-2009, 12:57 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Saint Bastage View Post
Tony...

For clarity sake...is the photo of your car posted in the forum where you requested he take it down, or by a link to a differant location.

If the shot is on the forum I'm amazed your post was taken down but not the whole "offending" thread.

If your shot is not on the forum, I'd agree with the Moderator. Not sure that public discussion is warranted. Likely to turn in to a pissing contest making both parties look bad.

Lane
To be clear, his website link is on the forum; you have to click the link to his site and scroll down to see my car.

Imagine someone came onto FerrariLife, not as a sponsor but just signing up, and posted a link to his business. You click on that link, and there you see a photo for 308 interior refinishing . . . and then you realize it is your 308 in the photo, being used as an example of interior refinishing . . . yet you never met or spoke to that business owner, your car was never serviced by him, and in fact your car is an excellent surviving original (i.e., people see a photo of your original interior on the site and it is implied that that is their re-do). Here it is, in a forum where you participate and people know you. Wouldn't you say something on here about that person?

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post #18 of 22 Old 09-14-2009, 12:59 PM Thread Starter
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By the way -- it's a moot point now; I doubt I'm going back to that forum . . . .

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post #19 of 22 Old 09-14-2009, 01:29 PM
 
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I'd set fire to the forum if it was me...
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post #20 of 22 Old 09-14-2009, 03:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tony K View Post
. . . and then you realize it is your 308 in the photo, being used as an example of interior refinishing . . . yet you never met or spoke to that business owner, your car was never serviced by him, and in fact your car is an excellent surviving original (i.e., people see a photo of your original interior on the site and it is implied that that is their re-do). Here it is, in a forum where you participate and people know you. Wouldn't you say something on here about that person?
I understand your point completely and I'm sure I would say something in the forum regarding the inaccurracy. I'm just not sure I would call the guy out in the forum. I might, I just don't know my reaction unless its happening to me. I do think the forum moderator should have locked or deleted the entire thread not just your post. That seems a bit unproffessional.

Tough situation.


Baz...I totally disagree...you would not be happy with a simple fire. Call in an Air Strike maybe, a fire, Nahhh.

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