Hello Claire,

I run a small business which is mostly creative-driven. I’ve worked hard and landed myself some great press coverage that I’m very proud of. However, I just found out that one of my vendors is using my business’s press coverage and photos of my designs on their own website. That would be fine, except they aren’t giving me credit! I reached out to them several times to ask that they simply mention my business in the photo captions, but they aren’t answering me. I don’t necessarily want to lose them as a vendor, but this needs to be made right! How do I get credit for the work without destroying my relationship with this vendor?

All the best,

Enraged Entrepreneur


First off, congrats on the business venture, my savory smoked salmon and shmeer! I pride myself on doing ALL of my holiday shopping on small business Saturday every year, as Amazon has excellent deals and free shipping! #protip

But that’s not the advice you came to me for, so I will move on without further mention of my love to #shoplocal. This is indeed the stickiest of the wickets. Let me ask you something: are you a millennial, my lovely little lox? If the answer is no, I would suggest getting the contact information for vendor’s highest ranking manager and calling him/her directly. If that doesn’t get you any resolution, I would suggest finding another vendor to build a relationship with (which may be difficult in the short-term but will certainly benefit you in the long run). Once you’ve found another vendor, feel free to go on the offensive with the current vendor, but do it through your attorney (or, if you’re strapped for cash, a friend who happens to be a lawyer, an excellent actor, and not in need of any monetary payment).

If the answer to that question is yes, you are indeed a millennial, then sweet salmon-y sangria, E-E! Why, oh why do you millennials insist on thrusting yourselves into every corner of the world wide web? My advice would be to simply take it as a compliment and move along. You wouldn’t have been able to create those “masterpieces” without your vendor’s materials, no? And you won’t be able to create any more “masterpieces” without their wares, yes? As the kids say, you have NO chill, En-Ent. Now that I’ve put you square in your place like the whippersnapper you are, you can go back to demanding compliments for retweets and taking every other day off because you’re “exhausted”.

I hope I’ve helped you, dear one – either with your troubling concern related to your admirably self-made business, or to wake you up to the harsh realities of life without participation trophies (depending on if you were born before or after 1983).

Cordially, Claire