Fast fashion retailer Forever 21 is often accused of knocking off other designers’ work, but the company’s latest infringement could land the company in hot water with one of the world’s biggest software companies. The Verge, citing Law360, reported that Adobe is suing the retailer for pirating software that includes Photoshop, Acrobat, and Illustrator. Autodesk and Corel have also joined Adobe in the lawsuit.
The complaint charges that Forever 21 pirated Adobe software 63 different times. It’s not known if the company is willfully doing this, or it’s one or more employees who are breaking company policy, but Adobe says Forever 21 “continued their infringing activities even after being contacted by Adobe regarding the infringement,” and that its actions were “willful, intentional, and malicious copyright infringement.” Adobe provided registration numbers and dates as part of the complaint
Adobe’s software doesn’t come cheap, and its design programs are often pirated, although a successful global company like Forever 21 should be able to afford them. Despite the move to a cloud-based subscription platform, users have found ways to get the software illegally by using pirated registration numbers. According to the Verge, Adobe has asked employees to rat on companies that are pirating Adobe software.
Despite being sued before, Forever 21 has never been found guilty of copyright infringement, and it’s possible that Forever 21 will settle with Adobe out of court. However, Adobe is seeking serious fines from this. Maybe now would be a good time to let Forever 21 know about Adobe’s $19.99 a month “single program” plan.