Kind of Screwed

Andy Baio:

In February 2010, I was contacted by attorneys representing famed New York photographer Jay Maisel, the photographer who shot the original photo of Miles Davis used for the cover of Kind of Blue.

In their demand letter, they alleged that I was infringing on Maisel’s copyright by using the illustration on the album and elsewhere, as well as using the original cover in a “thank you” video I made for the album’s release. In compensation, they were seeking “either statutory damages up to $150,000 for each infringement at the jury’s discretion and reasonable attorneys fees or actual damages and all profits attributed to the unlicensed use of his photograph, and $25,000 for Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) violations.”

Baio settled for $32,500, even though he believes his pixelated rendition of the album cover falls squarely under fair use. He simply couldn’t afford the legal fight. Andy’s post is a terrific overview of fair use.

What a dick this Maisel guy is.

Thursday, 23 June 2011