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Job interview cheeky f*ery

(121 Posts)
theultimatehousekeeper Fri 22-Feb-19 20:21:00

About three months ago I interviewed for a very basic admin job at a start-up company.

I had to prepare an interview task beforehand and it was a newsletter pertaining to the start-up. The interview instructions said that the newsletter of the successful candidate would be used IRL once they were in post.

So, I prepared my newsletter, talked them through what I'd done. They seemed very happy with it and asked to keep it, which I said was fine.

I didn't get offered the job but got offered a much better one paying one third more for another company, so no hard feelings at all.

But along the line of applying and researching this company before interview I liked their facebook page. Today a new post has popped up with their first newsletter.

They've used my design. I don't mean it's a bit similar - they have wholesale copied every single party of my design - the colours, the layout, the articles...it's my piece of work!

Can anyone top that for CFery? I'm not saying it's illegal or anything and I'm sure it's my own fault for letting them keep my newsletter. But how rude?!

theultimatehousekeeper Fri 22-Feb-19 20:35:48

That's actually really p*ssd me of if it was a way of getting work for free.

I used to have quite a highly skilled marketing job and I'm just doing basic admin work now that fits around random hours while I retrain at Uni to be a paramedic.

I was more than capable of producing a very professional piece of work for them (and did so in good faith).

EatToTheBeet Fri 22-Feb-19 20:35:51

You said they could keep it to look at in order to see if you were the best candidate. Possibly to compare with other candidates. Not to have and use.

I’m on team invoice them!

HollowTalk Fri 22-Feb-19 20:36:51

That is terrible. You should definitely take this further.

highheelsandbobblehats Fri 22-Feb-19 20:36:59

Its plagiarism. Unless they've credited you as the original source, they're passing it off as their own. That is actually illegal.

(Source, currently working on my degree and have had it hammered into us, even taking something from informal discussions with other students is classed as plagiarism)

Justaboy Fri 22-Feb-19 20:38:24

Well look it it that there may be a better job come up them one day why piss them off over what really is a small matter and be proud that they did use it, could ask them for a credit on the work perhaps?.

ChasedByBees Fri 22-Feb-19 20:39:07

I would send a letter pointing out that you own the copyright and you did not give permission for this to be used by them. How long did it take to design? I’m on team invoice too.

theultimatehousekeeper Fri 22-Feb-19 20:39:49

"Justaboy Fri 22-Feb-19 20:38:24
Well look it it that there may be a better job come up them one day why piss them off over what really is a small matter"

I totally see your point here, but I;m not looking to be employed by them in the future, it's just a fill in job while I'm training for something else.

melissasummerfield Fri 22-Feb-19 20:39:58

I thought the same as @eggys straight away!
CF!!!

theultimatehousekeeper Fri 22-Feb-19 20:41:41

For those asking how long it took. To be honest, it's not like it was days - it was only a two sided newsletter - but I did put in about maybe 5 or 6 hours getting it just right.

It wasn't just the layout or design it was about thinking about who the audience was, what kind of articles should feature so there was quite a lot of creative thinking involved in terms of content.

TheInvestigator Fri 22-Feb-19 20:42:26

Comment underneath the post querying why they have published a piece of your work without permission, given that they had it in their possession for comparison with other applicants. They did not have it to use as marketing material.

highheelsandbobblehats Fri 22-Feb-19 20:42:40

Do you still have your original copy of the newsletter on your PC. If you invoice them, I'd attach a note explaining the consequences of plagiarism and that you will take it further should they not choose to settle this with you.
I was plagiarised many years ago. On a wedding forum, other brides to be anxious would chat about all manner of things. The magazine lifted many of our comments and placed them in the magazine under fictional names to create an article. Then they completely deleted the forum so that we couldn't prove it. All they had to do was put our real names under it. We'd have been chuffed.
I've been married 10 years. Still irks me.
Don't let them get away with it.

spatchcock Fri 22-Feb-19 20:42:40

I’m a content writer and never credited - it’s not plagiarism.

I am paid however. I would treat this as work and invoice accordingly. I charge £35/hour if that helps.

ChikiTIKI Fri 22-Feb-19 20:42:51

How long did it take you? If it was me and I had spent a few hours on something like that I would probably invoice them for about £200. It would be a decent amount while I would expect them to see it "worth it" in that if they pay it I wouldn't be taking it further or posting anything online about them stealing it.

I think I would send the invoice then follow up immediately with a phone call to make it clear I wasn't bluffing. I wouldn't post anything on Facebook unless they refused to pay.

highheelsandbobblehats Fri 22-Feb-19 20:43:48

But if you're paid, you're selling your content. This is theft of someone's intellectual property. The OP was not ask, informed, credited or paid. The company have simply passed the work off as their own.

ResistanceIsNecessary Fri 22-Feb-19 20:44:27

On the basis that you are training to be a paramedic then absolutely pull them up on it! Not like you'll want them for a job in the future.

I'd comment on the FB post and ask if they are planning to credit you and pay for the work that you did, seeing as they didn't bother to give you the job.

theultimatehousekeeper Fri 22-Feb-19 20:45:27

I'm not certain that they didn't appoint someone - I had a strong sense that they might have an internal candidate or someone they knew in mind because they were really keen on me at interview but seemed a bit torn and then didn't appoint me.

I'm wondering if they had someone who lacked skills in the newsletter area but was good otherwise and was who they wanted and they decided to fix the problem by stealing my work.

StealthPolarBear Fri 22-Feb-19 20:46:22

Yes chances were presumably low you'd ever find out

terfsandwich Fri 22-Feb-19 20:47:42

Intellectual property - if this meets the definition - only belongs to the company if they employ you.

ScrimshawTheSecond Fri 22-Feb-19 20:48:57

You own the copyright, and if you've not in writing sold them it, then it still belongs to you. But in practise I imagine this will be difficult to prove. Pretty shitty of them, though.

AuntMarch Fri 22-Feb-19 20:49:45

What absolute cheeky bastards!

whatsleep Fri 22-Feb-19 20:50:47

Contact them first, it’s more professional and you have the option to threaten to take it further if they don’t pay for your work. No point commenting on their page, they will be able to delete your comment!

BadAsMe Fri 22-Feb-19 20:51:51

Take screenshots before you invoice them in case they just delete the post. And join the Facebook group Stop Working For Free.

Tavannach Fri 22-Feb-19 20:53:16

Another saying invoice them. About £150.

JassyRadlett Fri 22-Feb-19 20:56:00

Cheeky fuckers. I’d drop them an email:

‘Hi X,

I wanted to follow up on the newsletter design I provided in my interview for Position on Date. As you know, I provided a copy for internal recruitment purposes only, with the agreement that it would only be used outside your organisation if I were successful in obtaining the post, as also specified in the job advertisement.

I was therefore surprised to see it being used with minimal amendment on your Facebook page, including my original design and copy.

I asssume this was used in error. However, if you would like to continue to use it, and to use the design for future newsletters, I am happy to enable this at my usual marketing freelance rate of £35/hour. The newsletter, being a first in a series, took six hours to produce.

If you’d prefer not to go forward with the newsletter design and copy I provided you with as part of the internal interview process, I will look forward to you removing it from all your public channels. To enable you to provide the alternative from your successful candidate, I am prepared to support a grace period of 48 hours, until close of business on Tuesday.

Kind regards
Ultimate

SilverBirchTree Fri 22-Feb-19 20:56:30

Screen shots.

And then absolutely send a letter and an invoice. How bloody dare they!

I've had a company do something similar to me. They advertised a position, mined people like myself for ideas during a long interview process and then didn't hire anyone...and I got to watch my ideas rolled out by them over the next six months.

It's a way to avoid paying consultant fees.

Send a letter saying you're glad they liked the newsletter, here is the invoice for it. You hope they use your services again in the future. Arseholes!

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