obama archives

Issues of Copyright Infringement and Shepard Fairey’s Obama Poster

A few days ago, Cameron posted an interesting quote and poster about stealing inspiration from anywhere you can find it.

It will be interesting to see how this plays out for Shepard Fairey, the street artist whose fantastic Russian constructivist inspired poster design became the iconic symbol of Obam’s historic 2008 candidacy for president. Fairey admits that he found the source image on a Google image search, but never revealed or received permission to use the image. It looks like the source image has been found , and it is a copyrighted Associated Press photo taken by Mannie Garcia where Obama was having lunch with actor George Clooney.

Who knows how this will play out, perhaps the AP will grant him retroactive permissions, or there may be copyright infringement issues and money at stake (especially considering how Fairey may have profited considerably off this image).

At first this might not seem like a big deal, everyone’s done a Google images search for some inspiration. It is however, the responsibility of the artist to credit and obtain permission when the source is identifiable and potential legal issues may ensue.

Don’t stop looking for inspiration, but don ‘t steal, it’s not hard to ask permission and even easier to give credit where credit is due.

Here’s a few links for reference:

I came across this set of articles through a twitter post by Patrick King

Update: I missed this the first timeā€”the photographer’s web site now states that he was contacted by the Fairey’s gallery a few days ago (Jan 21, 2009) who acknowledged that the photo was the basis for the poster design.

posted by john on Friday, Jan 23, 2009 · 9 comments

While reading an interesting interview with the designers of the logo for Obama’s campaign, I discovered a cool little UI element on the New York Times website. If you select a piece of text, a little icon appears. When clicked, a window opens with options to define, search and other actions. Very nice attention to detail.

posted by foster on Friday, Nov 21, 2008 · 2 comments

Obama announced he will be holding weekly YouTube fireside chats, what his people are saying is “just the beginning of the digital, transparent presidency.” Related: Obama’s staff photographer’s behind the scenes photos of election night, which has just over 2 million views in 10 days.

posted by jason on Friday, Nov 14, 2008