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A collection of client horror stories from designers and freelancers on CFH.

In Fact We Have Over Fifty Shades Of It!

, , | Right | October 1, 2021

A client affectionately referred to as Mr. Grey:

Client: “Let’s make it pop better – maybe “darker” white or “lighter” black, somewhere in-between the two. Do they have a name for that?”

A Cinderella Story

, , , | Right | September 29, 2021

Client: “I like your design, but can we put a Cinderella picture on our flyers?”

Me: “Sorry, but Cinderella is owned by Disney…”

Client: “So?”

Me: “So using Cinderella would be copyright infringement.”

Client: “So what’s the problem?”

This Domain Is Not In Your Dominion

, , | Right | July 20, 2011

(The company I work for is in the business of hosting websites. I receive a call from a customer who is having trouble logging into his control panel.)

Customer: “I can’t login to my website.”

Me: “What’s your domain name?”

Customer: “[username]@yahoo.com.”

Me: “That sounds like an email address to me, not a domain.”

Customer: “That’s my dominion.”

Me: “Your domain name should be something like www.[sitename].com.”

Customer: “Right, it’s [username]@yahoo.com.”

Me: “Sir, that’s not a domain name.”

Customer: “Yes, that’s my dominion!”

Costs To Put You In The Red

, , | Right | May 2, 2011

Me: “Hi, this is [company]. How may I help you?”

Caller: “I am trying to print out a report. I was wondering if you could stop emailing it in color. The color ink is very expensive!”

Copyright Meets Copywrong, Part 2

, , , , , | Right | April 6, 2010

(I am creating a business card for a customer. She hands me a picture to scan to use on the card.)

Me: “Ma’am, this photo is copyrighted by whoever took it.”

Customer: “Oh, that’s okay. You can still use it.”

Me: “I’m sorry, but I can’t use it without the permission of the photographer.”

Customer: “Oh. Well, you can just cross out the copyright on the back of the picture and then use it! It’ll be okay.”

Me: “Do you have another picture you would like to use?”

(She hands me the same picture but with a piece of paper taped over the copyright on the back.)

Customer: “Here. Now you can use it.”

Me: “Ma’am, just because the copyright is covered now doesn’t mean it’s not copyrighted anymore. We could be fined $50,000 if we used this. If you can get the permission of the person who took this or another picture we can do this for you.”

Customer: “What kind of business is this?”


This story is part of the Customers-Are-Bad-Photographers roundup!

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Read the Customers-Are-Bad-Photographers roundup!