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August 9, 2010
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Christopher Gregorio, small-time Flash game developer, has revealed the secret to achieving a profitable working relationship with artists: Take advantage of them and rip them off. He openly admits to trawling deviantART in search of naive artists who are unaware of the value of their work.

He's the producer of the following games which appear on a number of games sites:
  • Penguin Massacre
  • Medieval Rampage
  • Medieval Rampage 2
  • Gravity Mouse
  • Between the Lines
  • Road Rage
  • Cell Warfare
  • Mech Slayer
  • Blob Survival
  • Icy Evade
  • Smiley Collapse


Just in case he decides to pull the entry, here are relevant quotes:

How to find an artist:

I recommend looking through art sites such as Deviantart for an artist which suits your taste, or any other site that has a decent art community such as Newgrounds. . . . First of all, they’re cheaper. These guys aren’t used to making a lot of money for their work so they will be more appreciative of the chance even if they are being payed slightly less than what professionals are payed. Second of all, they’re better. . . . Unless you have a specific price you want to pay in mind, ask THEM what they are willing to charge for the project. This usually causes people to give offers that are lower than what you normally pay, and will make them happy.

How NOT to find an artist:

Do not look for either professional artists, or an artist that has done a lot of game design work in the past . . . they’re usually expensive . . . they know how much flash games can earn so they expect a decent percentage of the profit. It’s ridiculous to pay something 50% of a sponsorship when you can find someone else who would accept $500 for the same job.

Artist payment:

Keep them in the dark:

This relates back to what I talked about earlier. If an artist knows how much their artwork will increase the value of the game they will then feel they deserve that amount of money. This is not how a market economy works, you hire whoever is able to do the best job for the lowest amount of money, anything else is a loss of money on your end.

Timelines:

Give strict dates about when you need the art done (even if you don’t) and give consequences by deduction in pay if the art is not completed by the date. Unless the person you’ve hired happens to be very punctual, you will need strong motivation to make sure they finish the art in a timely manner. Try to only hire people ages 18+ (I may sound a little hypocritical here), kids are generally less reliable and have more IRL things come up that they can’t control.


I strongly advise all dA artists to treat any proposition from Christopher Gregorio / Kaitol Flash Development with extreme caution.

Many thanks to Naamah_darling on LJ for the tip-off.
Add a Comment:
 
:iconstephanenoel:
StephaneNoel Featured By Owner May 4, 2014
Well... I would like to point out that it shows. The games are not that good looking and probably took more time to make than they could have. The best is to find yourself the perfect partner and stick with him or her. When you get a real trustworthy, talented and professional partner everything gets easier and the sky is the limit in terms of quality and value. This is where the miracles happen and bigger projects emerge. Without it you get low grade games and a bad reputation like for this guy.

I would like to point out that the problem can be on the side of artists as well since some of em tend to ask too much out of greed or pride and deliver bad service in return. Sometime great intelligence make someone stupid and unable to see the big picture, those people should really stop over thinking things like robots and see the importance of a proper collaboration.  F#$%ing money!

Oh well... It felt good! :P
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:iconphuein:
Phuein Featured By Owner Nov 17, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
So, this guy bothers to find good artists that are willing to work for affordable wages, and then gives them a chance at making art for professional products without any risk? Sounds like a good guy. :-)

If an artist gets this sort of opportunity, then seeing the game's success, they can then start demanding proper prices, or find a professional team to join.

Without entrepreneurs, such as Christopher Gregorio, and I'm basing myself entirely on this article here, the freelance and independent online market would crumble. Be warned.

www.AssafKoss.com
portfolio.assafkoss.com/
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:iconepsilonxiii:
EpsilonXIII Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2013  Student Digital Artist
isn't that just capitalism?

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:iconmasane:
Masane Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Omg what a douche!!
Reply
:iconversonas:
Versonas Featured By Owner Dec 24, 2012
You're all a bunch of idiots for calling this "ripping off". This here is an example of good capitalism. If you're too green or too dumb to realise your own value, then you NEED to be ripped off once or twice. It gives you experience and teaches you... if you let it.

Then again, I wouldn't expect you bleeding hearts to pay any mind to this.
Reply
:iconpineapples231:
Pineapples231 Featured By Owner May 8, 2013
I have to agree with the above comment. He paid money for commissions. Simple, he is unlike an art thief which steals direct art and profits from it, but instead HE PAID the amount the artist offered him for his own good.
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:iconmasane:
Masane Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Um just hell no.....It is ripping off re-read the article again dumb ass
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:iconversonas:
Versonas Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2013
A spineless libtard like yourself would call it ripping off and that is exactly my point. This is why our world is in such poor shape these days. Idiots like you scramble to blame anyone they can when something bad happens to them. Anyone except themselves. Because of this endless blame-game, nobody is willing to be responsible, own up to their own mistakes and learn from the experience.

Grow a spine and maybe some thicker skin and you might not get your poor little porcelain heart broken so easy.
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:iconmasane:
Masane Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Wow you really are a small minded rude asshat. I am no bastard ty. I my heart is not porcelain it's made of steel due to guys such as yourself. You know nothing about how others rip people off every day to non-professional and professional alike. Go back to school cause you sorely need it. People like that guy will get his. Karma is a bitch. People do not deserve to be ripped off. Maybe you do that to others judging by the way you are dissing artist you should not be on DA at all. GTFO ------>>>>>>
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:iconversonas:
Versonas Featured By Owner Jan 22, 2013
Small minded fool, you understand nothing of the way the real world works. It is a cruel, corrupt and nasty place. If you are so moved by the plight of these peons, then your heart is indeed porcelain. I have seen how this world works and I am done with this conversation. If you cannot understand wisdom then you are not worth my valuable time.
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:iconmasane:
Masane Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I am no small minded fool sir. For one you do not look old enough to think you are better than all of us here on D.A. We are real artist. Looking at your page and judging by what you have on there shows you know nothing. The real artist bust their asses to bring works to life. So if you think of us artist as peons then please by all means remove yourself form D.A. and leave the artist their space. Quit fucking with me and get the fuck out........... And I will report your punk ass
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:iconjddelux:
JDDELUX Featured By Owner Mar 23, 2012
Thank you for posting this! I hope all the deviants read it.

Too the deviants out there:
Stand up for yourselves! Don't get pushed around or walked on. You work hard at your skills, demand respectable pay. We must look out for each other too, even though at times we may compete for a commission. When we accept working for peanuts, then that becomes acceptable.
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:iconmasane:
Masane Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Well said!!
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:iconstephanenoel:
StephaneNoel Featured By Owner May 4, 2014
No worries... What goes around comes around. Intelligence is aboundant but wisdom is rare these days.
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:iconvermyn-n:
Vermyn-N Featured By Owner Jun 1, 2011
lol this guy is win
Reply
:iconspecter1468:
specter1468 Featured By Owner Mar 19, 2011
that jackArse
Reply
:icononyx-starchild:
Onyx-Starchild Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2010
*hiss*

No more is needed... This man's actions and the words he wrote speak for themselves

...
@%#*&!#$% #!#!!!!!!!!!
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:iconlarcentyler:
LarcenTyler Featured By Owner Dec 15, 2010
I don't understand people sometimes.
Reply
:icon2753productions:
2753Productions Featured By Owner Dec 3, 2010  Professional Digital Artist
Best response ever on that post:

"that guy who cheats artists, probably doesn't leave tips at restaurants and has his head shoved so far up his ass he can bite his own liver."
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:iconmartenas:
martenas Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2010
Art are like any profession, and an artist is like any professional and should be paid fairly fro there services.
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:iconmartenas:
martenas Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2010
Thank You for this.

Slim should be exposed.
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:iconsoulbrotha:
Soulbrotha Featured By Owner Nov 28, 2010  Hobbyist Digital Artist
The guy's ethics (or lack of) are disgusting, but he raises a very important issue. Artists should educate themselves more some of the industry standards before entering into contractual work. I mean, if someone asked to buy car, you would look up the blue book value and probably price some of that expensive audio, suspension, or whatever equipment that you've installed since you've had it. I know the analogy doesn't translate exactly, but artists who want to do pro work should do their homework. Education is the best way to prevent something like this.
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:iconarkadyrose:
ArkadyRose Featured By Owner Nov 29, 2010  Professional General Artist
Indeed, I agree with you - but heads-us like this news article also count as education too, warning the more inexperienced artists of the unscrupulous predators out there waiting to rip off the unwary.
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:iconkriscynical:
KrisCynical Featured By Owner Oct 19, 2010  Professional Digital Artist
I love how a lot of the comments on the original article assume all the artists are bitching because they want to be paid up the wazoo when in reality all most of them want is fair treatment according to industry standards with high enough pay to... you know... eat and stuff. Beginning artists don't have to work for peanuts in order to gain experience. Plenty of reputable companies, publications, and individuals hire inexperienced artists in entry-level positions for entry-level pay which is high enough to live on while treating the artist ethically at the same time. One of the most recent comments said that artists should work for a pittance so the game developer can afford to pay their rent. As an artist I'd like to be able to pay my rent, too, you know. I don't think that's unreasonable or too much to ask for.

This kid also doesn't realize that part of that article could get him sued by an artist when put in practice. Keeping an artist "in the dark" about the scope of the project and how widely the artwork will be used in said project isn't only unethical, it can lead to legal action if the client doesn't negotiate the proper usage rights for the work they're commissioning. That's part of how price negotiations happen in the first place; you're not going to ask the same price for a small time flash game for a start-up developer as you would for a game coming from a more well-known, established developer. The same holds true for any area of illustration or graphic art.

I'll never understand why some people think artists shouldn't be treated ethically and shouldn't be paid fairly for their craft. You wouldn't walk into an accountant's office and say "Hey, I know you're just starting out, so I'll let you do my books and then if I like what you do, I'll think about paying you. If not, you'll still get great publicity for your practice!" Why should artists (writers included) be expected to operate this way when no other industry does? The client needs the artist's services. Otherwise, they'd draw the artwork themselves.
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:icone-squid:
E-Squid Featured By Owner Oct 9, 2010
His guide sounds rather Machiavellian in nature, but less on the political side and more on the business side. And at least Machiavelli had a slightly more honest end-goal; this guy just wants to fleece artists for cheap Flash games.

" If an artist knows how much their artwork will increase the value of the game they will then feel they deserve that amount of money."
Yeah, they deserve that amount of money because their work is going into the game. For fuck's sake...
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:iconz3lo:
Z3LO Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
its a dog eats dog world out here after all.
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:iconinceptusnovus:
InceptusNovus Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2010
oh that sick bastard.
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:iconlibberachi:
Libberachi Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2010   Digital Artist
There's a special place in hell for people like this. And and even more special place in hell for people who are apathetic to such bullshit, or worse, actually AGREE with it. Holy crapitol. :icon0inugrowlplz:
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:iconlorol:
Lorol Featured By Owner Sep 2, 2010  Student Writer
It's just a shame that what he does is common today, and not even that stupid. It surely is immoral, stupid and just bad overall, but not stupid. I do not wish to supoort his action in any way -they are horrible and he should drown in shame, even though he would never do this- but he acted economically.

I started hating this part of economy.
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:iconthe-crazy-mad-man:
The-Crazy-Mad-Man Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
I recon we should petition him on here- SPREAD THE NEWS - HE WONT GET GOOD WORK FOR BAD MONEY ON DA AGIAN!!
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:iconjustanoli:
justanoli Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2010  Professional Writer
It isn't just this way with artists. I am a freelance writer, and it works the same way in that industry.
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:iconbluefireturtle:
BlueFireTurtle Featured By Owner Aug 23, 2010
It's incredibly sleazy, but I have to admit, it's good business skills on their part. Though being an aspiring artist, I have to say that this is utter bullshit.
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:iconwintersin:
WinterSin Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2010  Student General Artist
Well...that's a low kick to the balls. :I

or ovaries
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:iconsladin5ever:
Sladin5Ever Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2010  Hobbyist Writer
I'm a little confused, but he "stole" flash game ideas from people here on DA? Can someone clarify this for me. I'm so lost :(
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:iconarkadyrose:
ArkadyRose Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2010  Professional General Artist
No-one said he stole anything; I don't see where you got that idea from. He deliberately hires inexperienced new artists on dA who have no idea of the value of their work, and deliberately underpays them, taking advantage of them.
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:iconsladin5ever:
Sladin5Ever Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2010  Hobbyist Writer
Oh okay XD Thanks for clarifying
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:iconmelyanna:
melyanna Featured By Owner Aug 15, 2010  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
There's a lesson to be learned here: artists, never work without contracts.
It's not just the amount of money you are being paid when you deliver your works that counts, it's a matter of rolyalties, too. A professional would ask for a percentage on sales. That's what the "keep them in the dark" comment refers to.
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:iconbushidohacks:
bushidohacks Featured By Owner Aug 15, 2010  Hobbyist General Artist
This certainly brings up doubts as to whether or not you can trust ANY business. Gregori has adopted the system that is currently being used to outsource jobs in many first world countries to cheaper less informed countries.
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:iconcatgel:
Catgel Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2010
Ive just bollacked that dude on hes site there's enough stress in this world without dickheads like him making it worse thanks dude !
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:iconarkadyrose:
ArkadyRose Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2010  Professional General Artist
Technically "dudette". ;) No problem; it seemed appropriate to draw the community's attention to the matter.
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:iconcatgel:
Catgel Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2010
Hehehe sorry sweetie dudette hehe i have just done a journal about i t[link] i hope i have put the quotes right as i left the link to this news article on my journal. I have just looked at the guys site have you seen some of the comments people are going nuts its wrong !

Plus my poor friend Patrick :iconpatrick2006: is such a gentleman & he has just had a operation & he has had art stolen. You know it amazes me with all the technology these days how you can not get a app that allows you to protect your work like maybe a " right click & disable the save option surely in this day & age they can come up with something like so it can not save !

It just hurts that mans attitude !
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:iconarkadyrose:
ArkadyRose Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2010  Professional General Artist
The thing is that you can/i> disable right-click fairly easily with a couple of lines of javascript. There are ways round it of course; you can't stop someone looking at the source code and grabbing the picture URL directly, for example. That's why it's best to watermark all your work.
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:iconcatgel:
Catgel Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2010
I did'nt know that thank you !i do watermark a lot of my work & always put CATGEL in fat letters on it somewhere hehe unless it is a shared photo-manip ! Thank you !
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:iconarkadyrose:
ArkadyRose Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2010  Professional General Artist
No problem. :)
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:iconmdfive:
MDFive Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2010  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I'm neither one way or the other on this, but I do know that what this guy said is terrible, and his reputation is going to suffer.

It helps to build good relationships with artists (doesn't matter where you find them, but I hear this is a pretty popular place), and it helps to be part of the creative process other than "HERE'S YOUR JOB. DRAW THIS FOR MY PROJECT. I MIGHT PAY YOU LATER". Stalking DA or wherever for new, fresh artists to underpay and turn them into bitter, cynical artists that are wary of anyone that breathes air... that's NOT the way to go, here.

The best way for this guy to repair his reputation now? I can't help with that (hell, I'm trying to fix my own rep right now), but the fact that that article is still up after all this time... well, seeing that he can take the (mostly) angry comments is a step in the right direction.
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:iconwhisperpntr:
whisperpntr Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2010
The best way for him to repair his reputation is for him to actually own up to the accusations that his methods were deceptive. To state that they were right for viewing his words in such a harsh light and that he made a dumb error.

If he is still on his guns and tells others he pays artists fairly (I see of one thus far) then I doubt any artist minus that one would be moved to think differently.
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:iconmdfive:
MDFive Featured By Owner Aug 13, 2010  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I don't think he did that so far. I haven't checked up on this in a couple of days. It'd be surprising if he did, though.
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:iconwhisperpntr:
whisperpntr Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2010
Yea I haven't either. I just logged back on to dA to see this and a few other things
Reply
:iconwhisperpntr:
whisperpntr Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2010
First thank you for posting.

I have to admit, this whole thing was ludicrous and a part of me wondered how can anybody be so mind-numbingly stupid as to post a confession like this. But since he is real and feels wholly unapologetic for what he wrote, I can guarantee a lot of quality artists will now have reason to avoid him. If you want to be honest and recognized as an artist, never leave an artist in your dark

The very words you wrote created your own funeral. You can't take them back now.
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:icongreenzaku:
greenzaku Featured By Owner Aug 11, 2010
If its the Scott Pilgrim contest Yem is referring to, the contest in question does not generate usable content for the movie, its purely advertising to promote it. Contestants are asked to create a character similar to a group of seven similar characters in that movie.

The movie is already finished and there is no way the winning entries can earn them millions of dollars.

Advertising usually pays nothing to its audience at all, and even in the scenario of someone who enters the contest and *doesn't* win, to advertise on this site, the producers have paid Deviantart with funds that go into providing an online service that is free to a vast majority of its users.

The other contest Yem might be referring to is the Sony Skin-a-Trik, which asks people to design a skin for an electronic device; it is not a movie. The monetary value of the prizes is a little more than the Scott Pilgrim ones, but there is possibility for even 25 semi-finalists to earn something for the sale of the design from a website.

Such 'skins' are usually made available at a premium and entirely optional for the buyers of the device and frankly, with the sort of rapid technological turnover in the music hardware industry (my 4 year old MP3 player already gets odd looks), even with a large manufacturer like Sony, the actual quantity of Triks bearing a given winning design that gets sold on the market is likely to be quite small.

For a fairly small project with limited value added to the product (relative to the revenue generated from the whole product line), even the $750 THIRD prize *alone* plus hardware, or the chance to earn royalties, isn't so bad a deal. The plugin provided for entrants to create a skin of the right dimensions also made it very easy for many entrants to whip up something nice in 10-15 minutes.

Both contests have fixed terms and conditions that both company and artist/entrant must yield to, and are a form of contract as well. This is in line with the recommendations set forth to prevent artist exploitation here: [link]

Thus neither the Scott Pilgrim contest or the Skin-a-Trik contest is a fair comparison with 'keeping artists in the dark', or with letting naive artists set an uninformed low price.
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