Witchvox last night, only to discover that a company called "Keeper of the Cauldron" had not only stolen our "Call to Artisans" Notice word for word, but had the audacity to post it on the same page. The only thing that was changed was the commission percentage, from 10% to 15%. Yup, that's right. Not only steal someone else's work, but charge more for doing it.
Digging into the website a little deeper, I noticed that she had also stolen our format, and the basic outline of our company. There was nothing on the site; it was all vapor-ware. No product, only theft. Lie number 2: The shop profile claimed it as a brick-and-mortar store.
After a little detective work, I found the owners Myspace page, her personal Witchvox account, education and work history.
The owner of "Keeper of the Cauldron" is a high school dropout and former Walmart employee, currently working on the loading docks for Brooks Brothers in Denver. She lives in Byers, Colorado, and goes by various names in the magical community, including Kat Warsword, Ravensword, and L.K Penn, and apparently has never had an original idea in her life.
Needless to say, I am furious. That someone claiming to be Wiccan, and claiming to follow the Wiccan Rede would turn around and stab a member of the community in the back, or attempt to, is appalling. Azzerac and I created The Craftsman's Corner to celebrate the talented members of our community, give them an inexpensive way to show and sell their wares, and provide some much needed relief from the plethora of Azure Green plastic Made-In-China crap that tends to plague metaphysical stores.
Thankfully, Witchvox deleted both the notice and her shop account after I contacted them. But the point is, why do people think that this behavior is okay? That changing two lines in a poem is enough to call it their own? That altering the color in a painting is enough to tag it with their creative license? And moreover, WHY IS PLAGIARISM SO RAMPANT IN THE OCCULT COMMUNITY?
I mean, Helena Blavatsky is well known for stealing whole chapters from other scholars for her work. I have encountered thousands of websites that quote Scott Cunningham's "Encyclopedia of Magical Herbs" word for word without the slightest citation, kudos, or mention of source material. What is even worse is that all of it is taken as holy writ. Most practitioners don't even bother to work with the oil/herb/stone or do personal experiments.
Jeananne Rose, a wonderful and groundbreaking herbalist and aromatherapist, has mentioned frequently that companies and authors have stolen her published recipies, again without citation of source, or even a thank you. I know, as she does, that spending years taking notes, doing experiments, and refining a formula only to have it stolen and reproduced in a half-assed manner is enough to make even the most mild-mannered alchemist throw her alembic. Preferably against someone's face.
I urge you to be so damn original that it hurts!
Column: What is Pagan Music?
5 hours ago