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The creator of "Humans of New York" has slammed an Indian version of the blog for suing a rival, accusing it of unreasonably monetising the stories of its subjects.
Brandon Stanton launched "Humans of New York" in 2010, sharing interviews with city residents alongside their photos.
It was a runaway success and three years later, Karishma Mehta started "Humans of Bombay" in her home city of Mumbai, which now has 2.7 million followers on Instagram.
This month, Mehta filed a copyright infringement suit against the "People of India" Instagram account, claiming it had "replicated a large number of images and videos" from her page.
The case has sparked a social media storm with many chiding Mehta, including Stanton.
"I've stayed quiet on the appropriation of my work because I think @HumansOfBombay shares important stories, even if they've monetized far past anything I'd feel comfortable doing on HONY," Stanton wrote Saturday on X, formerly Twitter.
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"But you can't be suing people for what I've forgiven you for."
And in an apparent swipe at Mehta -- who receives a fee for subjects appearing on her page -- Stanton said he admired the "Humans of Amsterdam" project because its creator does not treat people's stories as "the 'front end' of a business".
In response, "Humans of Bombay" said the lawsuit was over its rival stealing content.
"Perhaps, before jumping the gun on this matter, you ought to have equipped yourself with information about the case," it said in a statement posted on X.
"HOB is all for the power of story telling", it added. "But it should be done honestly and ethically."
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