AP alleges copyright infringement of Obama image

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by obeygiant, Feb 4, 2009.

  1. obeygiant macrumors 68040

    obeygiant

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    #1
    [​IMG]
    Shep has made quite a bit of money on that image and it looks like AP wants a piece... oops.
     
  2. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #2
    Obama's face is Obama's face. It's not the face that makes the image effective, nor is it the quality of the image captured in the photo. What makes the image powerful is the design of the image, and the colours used. The photo was just a convenient way to get Obama's face, since Obama surely didn't have time to sit there and model. What's valuable, the face or the execution of the art itself?

    Just like you can't own an idea for a TV show or film because execution is what's important (think about how many shows and films are exactly the same), I don't believe it's right to profit from this. The stuff I said about Obama's photo is just my opinion though. I don't know about the legal side of it.
     
  3. MacNut macrumors Core

    MacNut

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    #3
    The problem is that he did not create an original image, he copied a picture.
     
  4. jecapaga macrumors 601

    jecapaga

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    #4
    Actually, Shepard hasn't made a dime off any of the images and prints he did for the campaign...and there were several. All proceeds donated to the campaign. Those making money off this work are those selling them for huge profit on ebay.
     
  5. Consultant macrumors G5

    Consultant

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    #5
    Modified version of copyright work is still copyright infringement.

    If that's true, f the artist did not make any money, it's hard to get money from it,
    since there is some original work involved, and especially after so much time has passed.
     
  6. Drumjim85 macrumors 68030

    Drumjim85

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    #6
    that's not quite how copyright law works...
     
  7. BreederCreature macrumors member

    BreederCreature

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    #7
    "Only when people are trying to just bootleg it for profit have I tried to protect the copyright." - Fairey on The Colbert Report (skip to 1:30)
     
  8. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

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    #8
    This guy just can't catch a break.

    Ah well. Nothing recedes like success.
     
  9. Spizzo macrumors 6502

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    #9
    Can't they tell the difference between pasting and painting? :rolleyes:
     
  10. decksnap macrumors 68040

    decksnap

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    #10
    I used to like the 'style' of this guy but I have lost all respect for him. He really is just a plagiarist with very little to add to the world of art.

    This is a good read. Obey Plaigarist Shepard Fairy

    The photo was the main thrust of the 'execution' in this case.

    If Shepard Fairy took his own photo of Obama and traced it with the pen tool, rather than take some other professional's photo and trace it with the pen tool, it would not have been so iconic.
     
  11. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #11
    Actually you can own an idea. That's the whole basis of intellectual property.


    Lethal
     
  12. Abstract macrumors Penryn

    Abstract

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    #12
    ^^^I don't know. I figured that I was going to be told that I was wrong regarding the "importance" of the photo, when the art is actually the red, white, and blue colours in the photo, and how it's used which makes it art.


    However, I'm not sure if you can own an idea, although this is entirely separate and actually off-topic from the Obama image thing. HERE is a recent "article" in Techdirt which I read that discusses the notion of ownership of an idea. The article isn't related to this story, but I just feel that this really should extend to art, and what is of value. Creativity is what's valued, and the execution of an idea; in this instance, the photo isn't of value to anyone. It wasn't even of value to the AP, who actually had no idea that their photo was copied until just recently. The photographer himself (Mannie Garcia) has said that he doesn't mind the photo being used. Maybe he doesn't care because he feels the same way, or maybe it's because he's a Democrat and Obama fan. I don't know. Of course, none of that matters since it's now the AP's photo.
     
  13. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #13
    People can own ideas. Again, that's basically the basis for intellectual property. Obviously the more vague and common your idea the harder it will be for you to claim ownership of it (like in the link you posted), but the more specific and unique the idea the easier it is to legally claim as your own. For example, can anyone make a sci-fi movie set in space? Sure. Can anyone make a sci-fi movie set in the Star Wars universe? No. No one owns the concept of a space adventure but George Lucas does own the concepts that create the Star Wars universe.

    Everything starts out as an idea which is why they are so valuable. I mean, you can buy a Coke for $1 but good luck trying to buy the formula, the idea, about how to make Coke.


    Lethal
     
  14. kewpid macrumors regular

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    #14
  15. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #15
    From your link:
    Gee, sounds a lot like the sci-fi/Star Wars example I gave in my previous post.


    Lethal
     
  16. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

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    #16
    It's an accepted axiom that nobody can own an idea, just the expression of that idea, which is what kewpid is saying.

    (Italics mine.)

    Therefore nobody owns the idea of in interplanetary space war, but somebody does own the Earth-Minbari war, which is a particular expression of that idea. Nobody owns the idea of a cell phone that also plays music, runs the internet, etc., but Apple does own the iPhone, which is one expression of that idea.
     
  17. Drumjim85 macrumors 68030

    Drumjim85

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    #17
    If only creative commons was more widely adopted ... If they're not going to make money out of it (commercial use), whats wrong with having your art legally inspire others to expand upon it.
     
  18. LethalWolfe macrumors G3

    LethalWolfe

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    #18
    In slightly different language I communicated exactly the same concept in a previous post. If kewpid wanted to inform me that I did not use the specific, technically correct language that's cool. But kewpid either ignored or mis-read my other post because he/she tried to telling me something I had already said.

    Gee, that sounds a lot like the sci-fi/Star Wars example I used two posts ago. ;)


    Lethal
     
  19. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

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    #19
    Well, uh, yeah, I was picking up on your lead.
     
  20. kewpid macrumors regular

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    #20
    I was trying to communicate that copyright law only protects your expression of an idea, not the idea itself. You cannot own an idea as legally defined.
     
  21. obeygiant thread starter macrumors 68040

    obeygiant

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    #21
    If Shep saw the image and then painted it from memory would that be illegal? If I saw the inauguration on television then painted a picture of it and made millions, would CNN have claim to it?
     
  22. decksnap macrumors 68040

    decksnap

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    #22
    You know he traced it in Illustrator, right?
     
  23. obeygiant thread starter macrumors 68040

    obeygiant

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  24. obeygiant thread starter macrumors 68040

    obeygiant

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    #25
    Thats awesome...good lawyer.
     

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