Copyright infringement is a serious issue. While I appreciate y'all making a public topic about it, I do have some concerns.
The statement that stealing art off a wall is art theft and that the unauthorized use of intellectual property is different, is an oversimplification of a very grey area. When someone takes your intellectual property they are stealing recognition from the artist, they are stealing possible revenue, and they are stealing your right to control how your art is distributed and perceived. I believe it is my duty as an artist to look out for other artists rights and the fact that you require the artist who did the original work to lodge a complaint is pretty crappy. A lot of traditional artists aren't very tech savvy, and even someone who is an expert doesn't necessarily have the time to patrol the internet looking for people screwing them. Personally I have very little free time, what little spare time I can finagle I spend making art. I appreciate the people who are out there policing for those of us who can't. The fact that a lot of the people who work for DA are artists and you don't share my opinion is, to say the least, distressing.
If someone takes money out of someone elses wallet while they're asleep they're still robbing them. The fact they are unaware doesn't mean it isn't happening, and if you are watching that makes you complicit to the crime. A lot of great artists have left DA over the years because of your lax protections of artists rights. I've seen it happen multiple times. I know you don't want to be seen as Nazis, but don't you want to be seen as protectors? Someone we can count on and believe in? Don't you want this to be the site that great artists flock to, instead of run from?
Art theft isn't going away, closing your eyes and saying it's not that bad fixes nothing. You've used the word moral in this article multiple times. Morality is based on integrity and integrity is difficult. Integrity means doing the right thing even if it's unpopular, it means always standing up for the little guy, it's being the person who gets up and draws the line in the sand when everyone else is still sitting around talking. Please do the right thing guys, let us know you care.