New York Times threatens tech startup over web design tool

Screen shot 2013-05-22 at 4.01.52 PM

A small tech startup is being threatened with legal action by the New York Times after it created an easy-to-build imitation of the paper of record’s Pulitzer-winning interactive feature “Snow Fall.

The labor-intensive multimedia project, which interwove text, video, photos and maps into a seamless narrative, was widely hailed as the future of online journalism and reportedly took months to code and create. But entrepreneur Cody Brown had been working on a simpler way to create a similar effect. He decided to build a replica of Snow Fall to demonstrate what his web design tool, Scroll Kit, was capable of.

“I was thrilled when I first saw ‘Snow Fall,’” Brown wrote on his blog. “For the past few years I’ve been working to help publishers break from their templates and craft powerful digital stories. So, instead of tweeting about how awesome “Snow Fall” was, I wanted to do something that would show its admirers that they can do it too.”

Brown posted a video demonstration of the entire process along with a statement saying, “The NYT spent hundreads of hours hand-coding ‘Snow Fall.’ We made a replica in an hour.”

A month later, Brown received a cease-and-desist letter from the Times’s legal team. He took the video down but left the text, and another letter was quick to follow, this one objecting to the use of the New York Times’s name at all. As of Wednesday, the text was still there.

“I emailed Deborah and asked why our claim is considered a copyright infringement, and am waiting to hear back,” Brown posted.

 



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Sister of accused Boston Marathon bombers arrested for…

The sister of the accused Boston Marathon bombers was arrested in New York City for threatening a woman over the phone, saying she could "put a bomb on you," police…

Local

Mayor announces public housing improvements

Mayor Bill de Blasio spoke at the Lincoln Houses in East Harlem on Wednesday, calling for the scaffolding to come down at NYCHA complexes across…

National

Peter Theo Curtis: American released by Syrian militants…

An American writer freed this week from two years in the captivity of insurgents in Syria spoke briefly outside his family's Cambridge home Wednesday of…

Local

Bratton defends 'broken windows' work as NYPD support…

Sixty percent of those polled said they support the "broken windows" theory approach popularized by Commissioner Bratton since his first term in the 1990s.

Television

'So You Think You Can Dance' recap: Season…

Season 11’s top four dancers gave their final performances before America’s Favorite Dancers are announced next week.

Going Out

Labor Day in NYC: Make the last weekend…

Soon, it’ll be time for wool accessories and knee-high boots. Even the Pumpkin Spice Latte has already arrived — but we still have one last…

Going Out

Things to do this week in NYC, Aug.…

MUSIC The Electric Zoo Festival Aug. 29-31, 1 p.m. Randall’s Island Park $99-$369, www.electriczoofestival.com The electronic music celebration returns for a fifth year, with 150,000 attendees…

Going Out

5 things to do this weekend in NYC

The Electric Zoo Festival Aug. 29-31, 1 p.m. Randall’s Island Park $99-$369, www.electriczoofestival.com The electronic music celebration returns for a fifth year, with 150,000 attendees expected. David Guetta,…

NFL

Mario Manningham on the bubble as Giants play…

Former Super Bowl hero Mario Manningham hopes his second go-around with Big Blue doesn’t end with Saturday’s final cut day.

NFL

Source: Stephen Hill 'faces a battle' to make…

A team source says Stephen Hill, who has battled injuries and poor performances during his first two years, is no lock to make the Jets’ final roster.

Sports

Serena Williams leaving legacy of talented American women…

It seems only a matter of when, not if, Serena Williams will win her 18th career grand slam championship.

College

When are 2014 college football playoffs? (Schedule, date,…

When and where are 2014 college football playoffs? A look at the schedule, date, TV, time for the semi-finals at championship game.

Style

Trend: White hot on the 2014 Emmy's red…

White was one of the big trends on the Emmy's red carpet.

Food

Recipe: Samuel Adams beer-marinated grilled shrimp

Summer calls for two things: a cold beer and light food. Sam Adams' Latitude 48 IPA fairly bursts with citrus notes, making it an ideal marinade…

Wellbeing

4 healthy ingredient swaps to make your meals…

When it comes to eating well, everyone knows they could be doing better. But cooking in an apartment on a busy schedule is a recipe…

Wellbeing

Heart trumps brain when it comes to movies…

When you need a good cry, do you reach for the movie that’s “based on a true story”? Science says you’re giving your brain far…