Friday, April 8, 2011

Shoe challenge 11

I'm a bit like the March Hare from Alice in Wonderland this week – once again late, late for a very important date! We all have to be talented at something and it would seem my talent is taking a deadline to the max. Yay for me. Bad for poor Shoeperwoman.

Without further ado, as this is going to be a short one, let's get on with the shoes.

Pink/nude patent Mary Janes from Dunnes Stores
Self portrait with the iPhone this time around. Taken in the fitting rooms in New Look (the biggest one in the world fact fans) in Dublin's Jervis Street Centre in the city centre. My dress is from Forever 21 and the handbag on the floor is Linea. I had just made another purchase in Forever 21, which is next door to New Look. I love that shop! I believe Ireland has the first store in Europe, though more may have opened elsewhere since. There we loads of shoes I could have taken home in New Look but for whatever reason they just never fit me correctly, perhaps a blessing in disguise?

Anyway, back to the shoes - decidedly unfancy following the Louboutins and Choos – but I love the colour and have tried and failed to find it in a suitable real leather shoe. So, while these are cheap and nasty (€12 and pleather) they are still cute. However, if I can get a good pair I'll jettison these. 

Close up

They are pretty aren't they? 

Shoeperwoman under attack

Today Shoeperwoman, the creator of the shoe challenge announced that her site was under thread thanks to another blogger who, despite being aware of the existing Shoeperwoman site, decided to hijack the name and reputation of Amber's blog by using the same name and attempting to trademark it. 

I've cut and paste the blog entry in below. If you also abhor such behaviour on the Internet please repost this on your blog. Thank you. 

Important announcement regarding

(First of all, the Shoeper Shoe Challenge roundup will not be appearing today as my time has been totally taken up with the issue below. My apologies to everyone who’s sent me photos – I promise I will publish them on Monday. In the meantime, I would really appreciate your comments and re-tweets on this post…)
I had really hoped not to have to write this post, but having exhausted my other options I’ve taken legal advice (from the wonderful Caveat Calcei, who you all know from the Shoe Challenge), and feel I have no option but to go public about an issue regarding the “Shoeperwoman” name and this site.
As most of my regular readers will know, I set up Shoeperwoman two years ago this month, having registered the domain in May of 2008 and spent a year planning the site. At the time there were no other sites using the name. Earlier this year, however, a UK-based company launched a shoe blog called “Shoeperwoman” and an associated retail website of the same name.
logo Important announcement regarding
(Not my blog)
I don’t really want to link to these sites as I feel they are damaging enough to my brand without me helping their Google rank, but you can see the address of the retail site from the image above and the blog can be found at (note: all of the links in this post are nofollow, and this is the only time I will link to these sites.) First of all, I want to clarify that these sites have absolutely no connection to or to Midas Media. I realise it’s confusing for people as they are using the same name, and writing about the same subjects, often in exactly the same way (i.e. using phrases like “shoeperhero”, “Shoeperman” etc.) but there is no connection, so please know that this is the only “Shoeperwoman” site run by us (with the exception of our associated Twitter and Facebook accounts, which also use the “Shoeperwoman” name), therefore if you come across these sites, or any others, please be aware that they have nothing to do with us.
The other company is also using the name “Shoeperwoman” on TwitterFacebook and other sites, which I realise adds to the confusion. If you are in any doubt whether something you read online is being said by me, or by Laura Blake, who is the owner of the other sites, please feel free to get in touch.
domain dispute Important announcement regarding
(Not me)
When I found out about these sites, I immediately contacted Laura Blake, who tells me that she does not believe there is any issue with her using exactly the same name as me for her two sites (although she has put up a disclaimer today which you can read on her blog). Obviously I’m disappointed about this. I set up two years ago: it is my livelihood (along with my other blogs), and Terry and I have worked very hard to build up the brand to where it is today. It’s disheartening, to say the least, to find that someone has knowingly decided to use exactly the same name and idea for a very similar project (Laura tells me she was aware of the existence of this site but decided to use the name regardless), and obviously this will make it much harder for both of the respective businesses to thrive, as rather than having our own unique identities, these two new sites have effectively set themselves up in direct competition to us instead.
not terry Important announcement regarding
(Not my Shoeperman…)
What Laura didn’t tell me during our lengthy email conversations, was that not only has she knowingly used a name which has been associated with my blog for the past two years, she has also applied for the UK trademark to the name “Shoeperwoman”. If she is successful in this application, this would mean that I would no longer be able to use the name I have made mine, and this site will effectively cease to exist. As the revenue from this site forms a large part of my income, I’m sure you can understand my distress at this, and the reason I’m writing this post.
To answer the obvious question that has cropped up in relation to this: no, we do not own the trademark to the name “Shoeperwoman”. We looked into doing this when we launched the site, however the very high cost of this was prohibitive for us, as it is for most other bloggers, and so we were forced to rely on the goodwill and common sense of our fellow bloggers/site owners, and to hope that most people would prefer to create something that’s truly their own rather than to duplicate another brand. Obviously that isn’t always the case: some of you may remember the issues Jennine Jacob’s The Coveted encountered recently when another site launched using the same name, and if this can happen to me, and can happen to a well-known blogger like Jennine, it can happen to anyone.
We have now lodged our own trademark application for the name, which means we’re already hundreds of pounds out of pocket in our bid to assert our right to continue to use a name which has been associated with this site for two years now, and which I have also used on Twitter, Facebook and other sites for the same length of time. Having taken advice on this, we believe it could cost us much more to defend our brand, which is obviously causing us a great deal of stress. This is where you come in:
How you can help Shoeperwoman:
Obviously this is a source of huge concern to us, so we would welcome any support our readers and friends have to offer us, in the shape of comments, re-tweets and advice. If you are a blogger, and would like to mention this is issue on your site, I would be eternally grateful, not just for my sake, but because as I mentioned above, this is something that can happen to anyone, and it is devastating to work so hard on something for so long, only to see it put at risk like this. Also, any links back to (especially those using the word “Shoeperwoman” as the link text) would be a huge help to us right now as they will help cement our position in search engines and support our right to the trademark when we file our dispute.
I also want to say a big thank you to everyone who has emailed Terry and I with their support over this issue: it really means the world to us to know that we have loyal readers who will continue to support us no matter how many other ”Shoeperwomen” crop up!

Original Shoeperwoman blog here


  1. Your shoes are so cute! I hardly have any Mary Janes, and I think that's a situation I'll have to remedy! It'd be nice to have shops like Forever 21 nearby rather than having to order things over the internet. Last year my sister & I went to Canada and got to go to shops that we usually just bought from online, like Forever 21 and Anthropologie, and it was really good to actually be there and see everything in person!

  2. We are lucky here in Dublin with nearly all the UK stores, a good range of department stores and then the Irish brands and a few US ones too to keep us going. I love some of the Aussie brands like SportsGirl, JeansWest and some of Myer's stuff. I loved Myer Girl when I lived in Melbourne too but I was a lot younger as it was ten years ago! I know what you mean about shopping in North America though... I haven't been to Canada but the US is a shoppers paradise, especially with those outlet places. *sigh*

  3. Am having memories of Bridge Road in Ricjmond now... Used to love that big Esprit

  4. I simply loooved these shoes, I love Mary Janes! I quoted your blog on one of my comments today, OK? Because I learned from you the expression "car-to-bar" shoes! (And I loved it!)

  5. Thanks Pgtat/Denise. I had a look at your blog too - you are doing very well to get to the 20s already!