HOT DOCUMENT: The Tenacity Of Nope


—–Original Message—–
From: Hale, Ellen
Sent: Wednesday, March 11, 2009 2:03 PM
To: Hale, Ellen
Subject: AP and the Obama Hope Poster

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

AP Staff:

The Associated Press today filed a countersuit claiming misappropriation
of the AP photo underlying the ubiquitous Obama Hope poster and other
materials by graphic artist Shepard Fairey.
The suit claims “blatant
violation” of AP’s copyright of the photo and seeks damages, injunctive
relief and a declaratory judgment stating that the photo was used
without permission.

This is an important case for us. Licensing of AP content sustains our
newsgathering and other operations. The law protects our news in all
formats against free riding, theft and commercial exploitation by
others, but only if we defend our rights against threats like this one.
We have made it clear that any licensing compensation recovered in this
case will be contributed to the AP Emergency Relief Fund, the charitable
fund that distributes grants to staffers and their families who are
victims of natural disasters and conflicts.

Here’s what Tom Curley has to say about the counterclaim:

“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

Attached you will find the press release we issued today about the
lawsuit. In addition, you can read a copy of the filing, an FAQ
explaining why we believe it is so important, other related materials
and general information about the value of AP content at our AP Web
page, Protecting AP’s Intellectual Property, at

Please direct all calls on this to Paul Colford or Jack Stokes in
Corporate Communications, at 212 621 1720 or or

Ellen Hale
Corporate Communications

DOWNLOAD: The Associated Press’ Counterclaim  [PDF]

PREVIOUSLY: Civil Disobedience — Being Shepard Fairey

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