Updated: AP Countersues Over Use Of Obama Image By Artist Shepard Fairey


imageLast month, artist Shepard Fairey filed a preemptive suit against the Associated Press with the help of Stanford’s Fair Use Project, asking a federal court for protection from claims of copyright infringement over his use of an AP photo for the basis of what has become an iconic graphic image of President Obama. Today, the AP returned the favor, filing an answer and a countersuit in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York against Fairey, Obey Giant Art, Inc., Obey Giant LLC and Studio Number One, Inc. (The lawsuit can be found here.)

The news co-op claims Fairey used the 2006 photograph taken for the AP by then-AP photographer Mannie Garcia “without permission from the AP, or any form of credit or compensation to the AP or attribution to the photographer.” (Garcia, now a freelancer, has said he doesn’t want to be part of the dispute.)The countersuit claims Fairey was “fully aware that the [AP photo] was a copyrighted image, misappropriated The AP



It is a great poster in support of Obama, however the artist should have gotten permission to use the Garcia photo from the AP or from the photographer himself.

Bill Dodder

However no one is more hypocritical than the Associated Press:

AP asserts that Fairey’s unauthorized use of its photo “is part and parcel of [Fairey’s] willful practice of ignoring the property rights of others for his own commercial advancement,” and that the practice “contrasts dramatically with his aggressive and hypocritical enforcement against others of his own intellectual property rights.”

Just Google "AP Fair Use"

The AP has really become a bad faith entity

Sisto Maximo

When it all comes down to it , it's all about money! It also keeps lawyers in business and judges working! Artists have never been treated well in this country so it doesn't surprise me! Next thing the Corporate Gallerie Network will sue Fairey because he used public space to show off his work! Artists are not suppose to do that in America! Artists are suppose to follow the Corporate System or you get blacklisted! Another sad story about this country!

Staci D. Kramer

Thanks. I've added a mention of this to the story.

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