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March 11, 2009

A Battle Not Worth Fighting?

Is there any irony in the AP's oddly Quixotic attempt to ding artist Shepard Fairey for royalties? Fairey based his iconic poster of Barack Obama on an AP photo - a fairly generic one at that. Copyright law seems pretty settled on what constitutes fair use at this point. But beyond that, AP looks ridiculous in pursuing this. Making a grab on what has become part of the general culture makes AP look petty. And out-of-step with the new digital culture.

For the AP, it's the latest in a series of high-profile efforts to protect its intellectual property--often at risk to its image when others perceive it as being either heavy handed or somehow impeding others, in this case an artist. But CEO Tom Curley argues in a statement that this lawsuit "is about protecting the content that The Associated Press and its journalists produce every day, with creativity, at great cost, and often at great risk. The journalism that AP and other organizations produce is vital to democracy. To continue to provide it, news organizations must protect their intellectual property rights as vigorously as they have historically fought to protect the First Amendment."
March 11, 2009 12:22 PM | | Comments (0)

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