University of Alabama’s Trademark Lawsuit Against Artist Dismissed

Painting by Daniel Moore

Painting by Daniel Moore

Way back in 2005, the University of Alabama filed a trademark infringement lawsuit against artist Daniel Moore, who created paintings of Alabama football scenes.

These paintings (like the one shown above) included many of the University of Alabama’s properly registered trademarks. Alabama demanded that Moore pay a licensing fee for using the trademarks in his paintings. Moore contended that he was creating artistic portrayals of historical events and, therefore, his works were protected by the First Amendment. [Read more...]

Photographer Who Photographed Neighbors Through Windows Sees Invasion of Privacy Lawsuit Dismissed

Arne Svenson - The Neighbors

Photograph from Arne Svenson’s “The Neighbors”

Photographer Arne Svenson photographed people in a residential building across from his second-floor apartment in New York City. The images ended up in the Julie Saul Gallery in a show, “The Neighbors,” with prints for sale at up to $7500.

The images in the show drew a huge response by the residents appearing the in photos and, ultimately, led to a lawsuit against Svenson for invasion of privacy.

Last week, that case was dismissed in New York State court by Judge Eileen A. Rakower, who ruled that the images were protected by the First Amendment and that they did not violate New York State civil rights laws barring the use of photos for commercial purposes without a person’s consent. The court order specifically noted that “[a]n artist may create and sell a work of art that resembles an individual without his or her written consent.” [Read more...]

Government Targets “People Taking Photos of Public Spaces” in Awareness Video

Not only does this video win the cheesy award, but the advice it gives to the target audience (apparently those with drastically reduced IQs) flags warning signs for things both pro and amateur photographers do on a daily basis.

Not really what we need the government telling us right now given the current attitude of law enforcement to photographers in public spaces.

[via Chase Jarvis]

Illinois Wiretapping Law Continues to Be Abused by Police

Just, wow.

I’m all for catching the bad guys out there, but this goes too far. As you can see in the above video, the guy who recorded police in public was charged with eavesdropping and faced up to 75 years in jail.  He won the initial case – the local judge dismissed it, citing that the Illinois law was unconstitutional (this should be a complete no-brainer here).

The Illinois legislature and attorney general are apparently idiots though, because the case is being appealed in an effort overturn the lower court’s dismissal.  [Read more...]

Fort Lauderdale Bans Photography as “A Matter of Public Safety” [Updated]

A star-studded cast is currently involved in shooting “Rock of Ages” in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and the producers have declared a 3-block area of the downtown area as a no-photography-zone.  Signs posted in the area read as follows:

Warning. No trespassing. Photography of this area is prohibited. Strictly enforced by FLPD. Violators subjet (sic) to arrest. City Ordinance 16-1 [Read more...]

Atlanta Police Delete Photos from Camera, City Settles $40K

As seen in the above video, Marlon Kautz, an Atlanta man attempting to document police activity, had his cameraphone seized after he refused to stop filming them in a public place. Those police officers then deleted the photos/video of the police activity.

In addition to the $40,000 in damages the City is paying to Kautz to avoid a civil rights lawsuit, the Atlanta Police Department is adopting new operating procedures that prohibit police from interfering with citizens who are recording police activity.

It’s nice to see official police procedures catching up with the First Amendment, eh?

[via PetaPixel and AJC]