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Rooting for Injuries Watch: The AP vs. that annoying trace artist guy.

Obama PosterYou know: Shepard Fairey, who took time out from cosplaying a graphic artist for Minitruth and plagiarizing everything that moved to trace out the iconic image of our new President.

Oh, well, it’s America, so it’s not like we really know what to do with irony, anyway. Might as well just shoot in the head and leave it dead in a ditch somewhere; seems more honest, really. Anyway, the AP finally noticed that they got ripped off. Amusingly, they did not see this as merely the logical extension of their already-quite-obvious policy for 2008 (i.e., getting Barack Obama elected any which way that they could that didn’t involve actual weapons), and thus a humorous quirk of the election. We just shot irony, remember? There was a loud explosion and everything.

No, they lawyered up instead.

The image, Fairey has acknowledged, is based on an Associated Press photograph, taken in April 2006 by Manny Garcia on assignment for the AP at the National Press Club in Washington.

The AP says it owns the copyright, and wants credit and compensation. Fairey disagrees.

“The Associated Press has determined that the photograph used in the poster is an AP photo and that its use required permission,” the AP’s director of media relations, Paul Colford, said in a statement.

“AP safeguards its assets and looks at these events on a case-by-case basis. We have reached out to Mr. Fairey’s attorney and are in discussions. We hope for an amicable solution.”

Mr. Fairey is claiming “fair use,” which is a defense whose effectiveness I am absolutely indifferent to, just as long as it’s not good enough to keep this puppy from going to trial. Personally, I’m hoping for recriminations, lawsuits, counter-suits, class-actions, demonstrations, a round of blackshirt anarchist rioting, and maybe a limited nuclear exchange. I can’t say that I care who wins, either. Actually, I do care: “nobody” counts, right?

Moe Lane

PS: By the way, the Obama campaign itself sold some of the pirated material. Hope they’re planning to give the AP its cut…

PPS: I add this link to the Best of Norman Rockwell solely as an exercise in applied sadism to any devotee of Fairey’s that might wander on in. Hey. You never know.

Crossposted at Moe Lane.

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