Cloning Reed College

College Cries Foul Over a Copycat


The website of a fictitious school called the University of Redwood features a faculty directory and photographs of a campus—most of which in fact belong to Reed. Now, officials are struggling to stop the fraud.

"Our lawyers are seeking to shut the faux Redwood site down," said Kevin Myers, a spokesman for Reed College, which is in Portland.

Officials at Reed suspect the site is part of a scheme to collect application fees from prospective students in Hong Kong and Asia. After collecting a fee, "a shrewd scammer could wait several weeks, then issue a rejection letter, and the student would never know," said Martin Ringle, chief technology officer at Reed.


Even Reed's history was stolen. "Redwood is named after the Oregon pioneers Simeon and Amanda Redwood," says the Redwood site. Reed is named after Oregon pioneers Simeon and Amanda Reed.

After Reed officials complained, Go Daddy, a web-hosting company that houses the University of Redwood site, briefly shut it down. But a Go Daddy representative said the site was re-enabled once Go Daddy ascertained that the "allegedly infringing material was removed."

But Reed's Messrs. Ringle and Myers said the infringement continues unabated, as will Reed's legal effort to shut it down. "Whoever did this went to some trouble to clone a good deal of material from the first three layers of the Reed College site and change all mentions of Reed to Redwood," said Mr. Ringle.

The college says it believes the website's domain is owned by somebody in China.

The Redwood website gives an address in Torrance, Calif., that belongs to a mail-forwarding company, said Mr. Myers. The site lists only a fax number.

Also potentially affected is College of the Redwoods, a university in Eureka, Calif. Its administrators couldn't be reached for comment.

Comment: Reed College site (the real college) | University of Redwood (Scam site)

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