Saturday, February 7, 2009

Even Obama's Posters Are Fraudulent

Y'all know that Orwellian Obama poster that every sap in the world is making their own photo look like? Sure you do, it was used by Obama supporters all over the country and now it's hanging all over Chicago streets. The artist was been arrested last night, and it turns out that the poster was created from a high-contrast version of a photo owned by the Associated Press. Arrested For Graffiti Vandalism The artist, Shepard Fairey, was arrested in Boston on charges of tagging property with graffiti, police said Saturday. Fairey was en route to one of his own exhibitions when the cops apprehended him. Obama Poster Violated Copyright? According to the AP report, the image of Obama (left) "is the subject of a copyright dispute with The Associated Press." Fairey says he is protected by "fair use." The court is still out on the alleged copyright infringement. However, if Fairey is found guilty of infringement, it would mean that every one of the millions of items sold with that grotesque image on it is also in violation. In theory, at least, every maker of those items would also be guilty. That would mean the City of Chicago would have to take down those hideous posters before the year 2099. Perhaps, even, the Obama campaign would be guilty to copyright infringement. Fairey The Fraud Mary Louise Schumacher of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel notes that some folks accuse Fairey of being a fraud. It seems that his Obama image is nothing new for him, inasmuch as he has a history of stealing images and using them without attribution, much less royalties to the original artists. Schumacher links to an article titled "Obey Plagiarist Shepard FaireyA critique by artist Mark Vallen," and it makes a convincing case in words and images that Fairey is a petty thief, unoriginal and unethical. How fitting it is, then, that Shepard Fairey is forever associated with Obama's image. RELATED: U.S. Copyright Office - Fair Use U.S. Copyright Office - Copyright Law: Chapter 1 Fair Use of Copyrighted Materials 10 Big Myths about copyright explained CNB RSS Feed