For those of you that have been following both my personal and group galleries here, it may have been a bit of a shock to login a month ago to find it empty and full of notices from deviantART as placeholders...
My Visual Kei / J-rock wallpaper & theming gallery was created as a safe, peaceful, non-verbal expression of fandom for a few of my favorite Japanese music artists after being bullied and isolated from the fan community at large (notably I've been abused, stalked, libeled, and harassed by a few individual members of the BUCK-TICK fan community that I've come in contact with over on LiveJournal that have followed me across domains).
If you've ever wondered how I've had all the time that I've put into my artwork and galleries (including updates, the average full-sized wallpaper here had over 72 work hours put into it), I'm disabled and have spent the majority of this past year ill, bed-bound and alone with nothing else to do to while away the hours listening to HEPA filters roar as I battled pneumonia and anaphylactic shock brought on by Chemical Sensitivity Syndrome (exposure injuries). Since I already was making all of this for myself, I decided to share my handiwork here free of charge to contribute to and participate with the fan community.
I've had to deal with the earlier mentioned particular handful of fans several times trying to blot out this gallery and my destroy my reputation and voice elsewhere online over several different domains to snuff me out of existence as viciously as possible, and have had to report a few of them to admins for their actions. On May 4th, 2012, I logged in here less than 24 hours after announcing that I'd completely hand designed and CSS themed my personal gallery and this "journal", to discover that one of those stalking abusers had anonymously flagged my entire gallery as stolen, copyright infringed artwork of their own, most likely in an attempt at revenge against me for reporting their abuse to admins on other domains.
The way US law works, only the actual holders of a copyright can pursue such a claim, and my work completely falls under "Fair Use" rights, but this abuser took advantage of a loophole that deviantART has created within their site policies that works outside of "Fair Use". When I produced evidence backing up my "Fair Use" claim (including mention of the standard use of the site by my direct peers in group galleries with links, which is one of the greater litmus tests used in court for "Fair Use") I was informed that they did not have the time to investigate everyone else on their servers (implying even if it is to establish the legality of my work), but my case was unique because I'd been reported to them (whether it was from a legitimate claimant or not). I have received no "cease and desist" notices nor demands for my artwork to be taken down from any musician or their representative companies or labels- this is purely deviantART's way of responding to things.
Using false copyright claims to take down targeted victims, tying them up in the red-tape of self-protective hair-triggered site policies and admin decisions is a very serious and common tactic from online abusers and bullies (you can read about the owners of "Nyan Cat" going through that across several major domains, documented on Wikipedia) but unlike "Nyan Cat", I generate no income from any of this and have no money at stake (other than the fees I've paid for this gallery that has been forced to lay fallow after the shut-down, that deviantART has not refunded and has not commented on so far, even when requested directly for over a month running) so at this point, the only ones that are at a loss from this are the fans that will no longer have access to my theming.
Consider for a moment how most fans use band shots for profile photos, user icons, use animated GIF's taken directly from concert footage DVDs & PVs, create and/or use wallpapers & blog themes, post lyrics & fan translations of those lyrics in text form; post, link-share & re-blog scans of their favorite musicians (let alone share links to, and even sometimes upload/download video and audio footage) across multiple online domains (YouTube, Facebook, LiveJournal, Tumblr, MySpace, DailyMotion, and thousands of others). This act upon my fanart wallpaper gallery was rather hypocritical and had nothing to do with ethics or protecting the interests of the bands they adore.
None of my wallpapers or theming items have ever decreased the value of or interfered with the sales of any magazines or merchandise. The bulk of my art highlights small bits of 20-25 year old vintage shots no longer for sale and bits of simple on-the-fly screenshots when possible, quite deliberately to avoid reducing band goods profits for the sake of the bands / musicians.
I will continue to create my theming art designs as always- but after this, only those I choose are going to have access to them elsewhere, instead of the fan community at large.