Former Revenge Pornster Chance Trahan Reinvents Himself... As Shark Tank's Daymond John

from the highly-motivated-plagiarism dept

Chance Trahan and Craig Brittain, the "masterminds" behind revenge porn also-ran IsAnybodyDown, were never much for originality. To start out with, the site name was nothing more than a knockoff of revenge porn "pioneer" Hunter Moore's Is Anyone Up?

Like Hunter Moore, Trahan and Brittain made a living off the misery of others, hosting explicit photos assumed to be forever secret by those featured in them. All three resided in a particular subset of humanity, existing only to entertain and titillate another subset of humanity located roughly adjacent to these misery merchants.

And like Hunter Moore, these revenge pornsters ran headlong into the legal system. The FTC wrestled Brittain into an unfavorable settlement, while Trahan's supposed rebirth as an actual, presumably useful human being has gone unnoticed.

Or mostly unnoticed. Asher Langton noticed. Chance Trahan thinks he's enough of a draw that people will willingly pay him up to and including $70,000 to pretend to be someone else. Chance Trahan invites potential victims attendees to "look in the mirror" and "reflect success!" (Exclamation point in the "original.") But when Trahan looks in the mirror, he sees… Shark Tank's Daymond John.

Chance Trahan has copied -- in whole -- presentation FAQs and speaking topics [embedded below] from Daymond John's website, replacing little more than Daymond's name and logo with his own. [Original on top, Trahan's knockoff on the bottom.]

Yes, Chance Trahan is so inspirational he can't even bothered to compose his own AV instructions. He's the white Daymond John, only without the talent, drive or provable success. He's everything you could possibly expect from a former revenge porn site operator, including deeply hypocritical.

Much like Craig Brittain, Trahan has a deep -- if completely arbitrary -- respect for people's intellectual property. While the two may have built a small fiefdom using unauthorized photos, they're quick to deny that privilege to others. Brittain issued a DMCA notice a few weeks ago, aimed at delisting articles critical of him, including the FTC's own statement on his settlement. In his notice, he claimed the following, all without the slightest trace of irony:
Unauthorized use of photos of me and other related information. Unauthorized use of statements and identity related information. Unauthorized copying of excerpts from Using photos which are not 'fair use'.
Trahan has made similar demands in the past. (h/t Adam Steinbaugh)
You are infringing Chance's intellectual property. Please consider this a notice of infringement and a demand that you cease and desist from using Chance and from using any and all intellectual property owned by Chance. Regarding the DMCA, all content of Chance that you use is copyrighted material for which you are using without permission of the copyright owner; namely, Chance. You are also using Chance's registered trademarks without permission.
Apparently, doing a name and logo swap isn't infringement. And neither is the use of others' intellectual property without permission -- like, say, in the context of a revenge porn site. Chance Trahan may be trying to reinvent himself as a brand-new, less-evil person, but so far, all he's done is reinvent himself as the Daymond John no one's interested in. The uninitiated may fall for this borrowed persona, but those familiar with Trahan's past will see right through his secondhand alter ego.

There's a lesson to be learned here. 98% of it is: don't be so fucking stupid. The other 2% is this: if you want to make amends for your previous wrongdoings, great. Just don't do it by trying to bury your past (Brittain) or by building a whole "new" persona nearly-completely based on someone else's work and success.

If this pair genuinely wants to go forth and do no (further) evil, that would be great. But so far, both have proven they can't even get out the front door without botching it completely. Fortunately, this time, the damage they're causing is mostly internal.

Filed Under: chance trahan, craig brittain, daymond john, motivational speaker, plagiarism, reflect success, revenge porn

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  1. icon
    tqk (profile), 9 Mar 2015 @ 4:34pm

    Re: Protographer?

    That's just ecstatically funny on many levels. Copyright enforcers and spies have been known to insert typos in order to track sensitive documents back to their leakers.

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