This is something i've had a REALLY bad experience with. I know some people will copy a tutorial/picture but give credit where its due. But you do get some people who will just steal a build and claim to have created it themselves. but ive had a much worse experience than this. i was a head builder and builder rank on a few servers at the time. my primary server had asked me to make some spawns/mines as it was a prison server. i spent hours making a design and then even more hours messing with block combinations to make a few of the mines different. finished the build, everyone loved it. moved onto my next project. happy days.
a few days later i come online and everyone is going crazy because a hacker somehow managed to steal the world files from the server, and was SELLING my mine/spawn builds for some decent money. dont know if he made a lot but it really hurt having put hours into a build that i happily did for free, just for some guy to steal and profit from it. and there was nothing we could do. we knew who it was and had the link to the page he was selling it on. but there was no proof it was my og design. so we couldnt do anything
what do you guys think? i know its not common to be stolen from like this but trust me, its frustrating.
i currently have two amazing house designs i made from scratch, no inspiration etc... ive shown a few people them and trust me, theyre good. but im reluctant to show them to the community from that past experience. i wouldn't sell them myself even if i did share them as i work full time and also have a good degree ahead of me. but wouldn't really enjoy someone selling them as their own
Hacker? I highly doubt that because all it takes is the world downloader plugin to save / download the world you're in.
I also don't think you can claim that he stole anything because if you visit a server then your Minecraft client downloads all the chunks you're visiting, that's also why this downloader plugin works. Basically all it does is actually save the data instead of merely deleting it after use.
Of course when it comes to the intellectual property, your building, then I can definitely understand the frustration but that's pretty much out of your hands. After all: you made that for the server, so the server owner is the one who might be able to take action. But even then its a long shot.
Unfortunately the main rule is still that if you're not comfortable with people (ab)using your stuff then it's best not to share it in the first place. And putting it onto a public server is unfortunately just that: you're making it available for anyone to download / grab. That's simply how Minecraft works.
Even if there is no money involved, seeing one's work claimed by another is always infuriating.
The problem is less a matter of who owns the IP (has thereby standing to take action), than that the cost of legal action vs the probable recovery is prohibitive.
The best defense against this kind of thing I've yet seen is to get the word out concerning the person/site doing the unauthorized reselling; it won't stop the theft (it won't even stop them making money because people pay for freely available stuff all the time), but you'll at least have the credit and appreciation you're due among the creative community.
Something that's a bit of a needed precursor to this is to make sure you can prove your authorship.
If I am correct in my understanding of the IP you created, you might try this method;
I assume there are some fairly large areas of the builds that are solid. Within one or more of these areas (preferably one unlikely to be mined through) encode your name.
As an example: you could use an 8x6 area of granite and diorite to encode the ASCII for Kiwi91 — even if someone did mine through the area, they would be unlikely to notice [If, by chance, they do; just call it an Easter Egg ]
Alternately, you could use a pattern of bedrock at level 5 for the same purpose.
For smaller builds (like your houses) or where secrecy about the build contents is not desirable, posting pictures of the builds from your private world in the forum showcase before building them publicily could be used to establish the date of your build (if not necessarily its originality).
The point of all this is to get you your deserved credit with minimal hassle. (A bonus is that this acts as a landmine for the thief, he'll never know when someone may stumble across your freely posted version of what he sold them — a circumstance most unlikely to lead to any repeat business )