SHARE THIS VIDEO and help stand up for rights of independent artists! Chuck E. Cheese’s stole my video, manipulated it and used it in their restaurants witho…

Absolutely unacceptable Chuck E. Cheese. Cory Williams aka DudeLikeHella, creator of TheMeanKitty works really hard for everything he does and you go and take his content and make it your own without his permission? That’s really messed up.

"I can't feel my heart beat"

I’m standing here ready to be loved
While my heart bleeds on her rug
Cause she told me she cared
That her love would never despair
Even as I’m dying for a stab wound
She is uncertain of me unable to
Tell me maybe our love was
Meant to pass away and die
There’s so much I haven’t seen
And so much I haven’t felt
She says while staring deep
Into my emotionless eyes
Cause why does it have to be now
When I’ve finally settled on loving you
My heart drips its last drops of blood
Replaced now by a frozen wasteland

I feel so cold…

~AFAP © 2014


So photographer David Slater wants Wikipedia to remove a monkey selfie that was taken with his camera. As you can see from this screen shot, Wikipedia says no: the monkey pressed the shutter so it owns the copyright.

We got NPR’s in-house legal counsel, Ashley Messenger, to weigh in. She said:

Traditional interpretation of copyright law is that the person who captured the image owns the copyright. That would be the monkey. The photographer’s best argument is that the monkey took the photo at his direction and therefore it’s work for hire. But that’s not a great argument because it’s not clear the monkey had the intent to work at the direction of the photographer nor is it clear there was “consideration” (value) exchanged for the work. So… It’s definitely an interesting question! Or the photographer could argue that leaving the camera to see what would happen is his work an therefore the monkey’s capture of the image was really the photographer’s art, but that would be a novel approach, to my knowledge.

somesocialjusticebullshit said:

You do realize you are breaking the law by posting some of these pictures online right?

*wipes away tears of mirth*

Whew, thanks! Who doesn’t love a good belly laugh in the morning? Anyhow, as I’ve said before, the Rijksmuseum, the Met, The Walters, the NGA, the Getty, and most museums offer great free images of their Public Domain artworks online and you should utilize these wonderful resources.


That being said, if I have inadvertently used your photograph of a public domain artwork in a way you don’t like, or really, for any reason whatsoever just message me and I will remove the images right away. There’s plenty of legal precedent for me to use them anyways, but honestly that’s just rude. Someone requested images to be replaced with links exactly once in the history of this blog, and really I have no problem doing so.

Some museum like the Met have attempted to place nominal commercial restrictions on some of their images, but U.S. law is well-established that expecting to hold copyright on a photograph of a public domain artwork is Not a Thing.

The thing about the internet is you can either try to hold on to the idea of copyrights that have no legal precedent, or you can get with the times and use new realms of access to get people excited about art history:


^ That’s the message that pops up at Rijksmuseum when you DL one of their awesome hi-Res images. Like this painting of a Javanese Aristocrat from the 1800s:


And this is what I mean by High Resolution:


^ Like, seriously, not kidding you about the image quality.

Watch on

How to affordably copyright your art & deal with copyright infringement with Jeral Tidwell | Adventures in Design

Quote of the week (08/09/2014):

Wasted Rita    |    |    Facebook

Wasted Rita is a graphic designer and illustrator conceived in New Jersey, based in Lisbon. She is a natural born agent provocateur, sarcastic as needed and a full-time thinker who must write about life, human behaviors and play with words in order to keep breathing.

She studied in a religious college and grew up listening to Black Flag, turning out to be a harsh mixture between Jesus Christ and punk-rock. Rough and rude at first sight, above all, just a passionate kid doing what she thinks she should.

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In the last few days, a number of Teen Wolf fanartists with stores on RedBubble have posted/tweeted about takedowns by RedBubble of some of the items in their stores. From what we’ve been told, all the items either had “Teen Wolf” in the tags, in the item or store description and/or in the item/store title; RedBubble isn’t claiming ownership of the works, and the language in the emails doesn’t say whether Viacom complained, or whether someone “authorized to act on their behalf” (namely, Redbubble themselves) cited the work as having issues.

This is not the first time RedBubble has taken down merch and sent an email to the store operator; RedBubble does this when their bots ”see” something that could be infringing (even if it isn’t) and generally RB tells the site operator that they were taken down after RedBubble ”received a complaint from [a major multinational rightsholder], the claimed owner or licensee of related intellectual property, and in accordance with Redbubble’s IP/Publicity Rights Policy.”

Back in 2003, CafePress took down fanart inspired by the Harry Potter characters from HPEF’s Nimbus - 2003 fancon store, because the site’s bot did some image recognition thing and CP’s policy was to take things down if the image matched up with images submitted by the copyright and/or trademark-holders. We replied to CafePress, explained that the works were transformative works and didn’t have any trademarks on them, and they were put back up shortly thereafter. Similar things have happened over the past 11 years. Every single popular show/film/brand/band/comic/series is included by CP and RB in their “usage review” systems.

As CP said in a recent annual report, ” We maintain content usage review systems that, through a combination of manual and automated blocks, monitor potentially infringing content of which we become aware.” Redbubble said something similar this summer:

Although we’re not required by law, we take further proactive efforts on many occasions and work closely with numerous content owners, brands and individual artists to minimize instances of third party infringement of intellectual property rights via the Redbubble marketplace.

They don’t always notify the copyrightholders or trademark owners expeditiously; CP and RB’s bots check the images and the descriptions and take things down just because the IP owner has put their brands and sometimes their art into the CP and RB content management system. That doesn’t mean there aren’t “false positives” - the content management system doesn’t check for fair use or parodies or commentary/criticism, and we’ll explain how to make them aware of that below.

The laws in the US regarding transformative works and copyright infringement have expanded over the last decade to define more things as Fair Use - and the bots that stores like CafePress and RedBubble use have become more precise; they’re similar to “Search By Image” on google. However, the laws regarding trademark infringement in this sort of situation are relatively unchanged.

Fanart shared in the “gift economy” is fair use; we posted extensively about noncommercially distributed fanart back in January. Selling fan art may also be fair use as a matter of law, for purposes of determining whether it infringes on someone else’s copyright.  However, even if a work is fair use under copyright law, selling it in connection with someone else’s trademarks may constitute trademark infringement.

It’s not a given - it won’t always. If the marks are used descriptively, if they’re used to compare things, etc., it may not be trademark infringement. But you are less likely to get a takedown notice if you don’t include tags that are a show or film or band’s trademark - use a shortened version of the show title (TW, ST, SPN, AOS, etc.) or a ship name or a character’s last name instead.

If you do get a takedown notice and you think that what’s been taken down is fair use, you are allowed to respond and explain why the work is noninfringing. You can discuss these factors:

1. The purpose and character of the work (Is the fanart transformative? Was it made for non-commercial purposes? Selling something on RB impacts on this factor, but it’s not the only element at issue, especially if the fanart doesn’t replicate something seen on screen or in a comic strip panel.)

2. The amount and substantiality of the copyrighted work used (How much of the copyrighted work was used and why was it used? For fanart, usually little if any of the copyrighted work was used.)

3. The effect on the market of the copyrighted work (Will the work be used as a substitute for the original copyrighted work or impact the market for sales of merchandise related to the original copyrighted work?)

You also might want to include language inspired by this:

As fair use is a lawful use of a third party’s copyright, to the extent that this art uses another’s copyright, it should be deemed fair use under 17 USC 107 because it is (a) transformative and (b) does not adversely affect the market or potential market of the original work or derivative works. When determining if fair use is applicable and thus a work noninfringing, the central purpose of said investigation [into purpose and character of use] is to see … whether the new work merely “supersede[s] the objects” of the original creation, or instead adds something new, with a further purpose or different character, altering the first with new expression, meaning, or message; it asks, in other words, whether and to what extent the new work is “transformative.” Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music, Inc., 510 U.S. 569, 579, 114 S.Ct. 1164, 127 L.Ed.2d 500 (1994), Zomba Enterprises, Inc.; Zomba Songs, Inc., Plaintiffs-Appellees, v. Panorama Records, Inc., Defendant-Appellant., 491 F.3d 574 (6th Cir. 2007).

 Takedowns like this happen all the time; they happen when they’re justifiable because someone’s uploaded a show-created poster as a Redbubble tote bag or CafePress coaster, they happen when someone “markets” their fanart using a trademark that the show’s creators or distributors own, and they happen when works are completely noncommercial and only on display. Absent other information, it’s not practical to assume that it’s part of a crackdown on specific artists or ships, and with regard to what’s happened to some Teen Wolf artists this week, it’s impossible to even know if the takedowns were because the trademarks were used, or because of the images themselves. We’d love more info, though - so if your art has been taken down on RedBubble and you weren’t using Teen Wolf - or any character names - in the tags or descriptions, and you’ve submitted a “Fair Use” counternotice, and it still hasn’t gone back up even though a few business days have passed, please let us know and we’ll see if we can learn more.

Follow FYeahCopyright for more on legal issues of concern to fandomers.


Watch on

The Bizarre State of Copyright

In which Hank discusses what intellectual property is, and how copyright is increasingly being policed by dumb robots that don’t have very much to do with the law, but have everything to do with it just being REALLY COMPLICATED and there being terrifyingly massive amounts of media to regulate.

via Muddy Colors

There are six “pillars”—basic rights—protected by copyright and the owner has the exclusive right to do (or authorize others to do) the following:

• Reproduce the work in any manner by any means.

• Prepare derivative works based upon the work.

• Distribute copies of the work to the public directly or through permission granted others via sale, rent, lease, or license.

• Publicly perform the work, in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, film and other presentations

• Publicly display the work, in the case of literary, musical, dramatic, etc. and pictorial, graphic, or sculptural work, including individual images from films, TV, et al.

• Digital transfer of sound and/or images or the authorization for others to do so.