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Re: A$$ociated Gangsters Claim Intellectual Monopoly on Obama's Face

  • Subject: Re: A$$ociated Gangsters Claim Intellectual Monopoly on Obama's Face
  • From: Rex Ballard <rex.ballard@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Thu, 5 Feb 2009 21:16:06 -0800 (PST)
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On Feb 5, 9:59 pm, Roy Schestowitz <newsgro...@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> AP Demands Money For Iconic Obama Poster Image

> ,----[ Quote ]
> | Just last week, we wrote about the
> | question of whether or not the iconic
> | image used on Obama posters that
> | was created by street artist Shepard Fairey
> | was copyright infringement. For a while, no one (including Fairey) could
> | figure out what photo was the basis for the image.

It may still be hard to prove, that the AP image was the only possible
image that could have been the original.  Pretty much anybody with a
cell phone or a camera who went to see Obama speak would have gotten
similar poses.  On the other hand, if the artist knew that he was
painting by copying one and only one photograph, then it would have
been copyright infringement.

> | But a photojournalist
> | tracked it down, and discovered it was by a photojournalist named Mannie
> | Garcia, who was doing work for the Associated Press at the time.

If this was work for hire, then all shots taken by Garcia would have
been the property of AP, but only the ones published would likely be
copied.  Contractors and free-lancers may have different agreements.

Keep in mind that celebrities actually have no ownership or royalty
rights over photographs taken of them when they are in public.

Photographers usually try to get releases whenever possible,
especially from non-celebrities.

> | Garcia
> | didn't mind at all, but as we noted in our post, the AP might take a
> | different view on things, since it's so aggressive with copyright. However,
> | even we thought the AP wouldn't be so stupid as to actually demand payment
> | for the use of the image... but we were wrong.

If AP paid Garcia to be at the location or paid for the specific shot,
and then AP published the photographs or published them to licensed
subscribers who then republished the content, then AP has a legitimate
right to expect royalties when a painting based solely on the
copyrighted and published work is created.

Many artists will try to get public domain pictures and/or multiple
photographs and create a painting based on a "composite".

Photographers don't just show up for 5 minutes and snap a few shots.
They often wait for hours, planning their exposures in advance,
picking out the best lenses, and presetting the zoom setting as much
as possible.  Then, after all of that waiting, he will be one of
dozens of photographers pushing and jostling for the best position.
He typically only has time for 10-12 shots, and he hopes that one of
those shots will have the "Magic" to make it out to the major news-
wires.  The best photographers consistently get unique shots, and know
that their work will be mass-produced.

Getting a close-up shot of Obama generally requires additional effort
and additional "clout".  You generally need a "Press Pass" from a
major publication or news wire service.  so if Garcia flashed his AP
badge to get better positioning from the secret service, then AP has
even more right to say.

FreeLance photographers also know what their product is worth, and
often get paid handsomely for shots that were obviously well planned
and well timed.

> http://techdirt.com/articles/20090204/1747283650.shtml

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