stopped Commercial Orphan Works Exploitation in the UK Digital Economy Bill Clause 43

They've done it again

It isn’t the first, and now that the copyright-ignorant “everything on the Net’s free - I can just use it in mashups” Internet Generation is active in political campaigning, it won’t be the last. The Labour Party has breached another photographer’s copyright. They have used, unlicensed, a heavily retouched copy of the iconic David Cameron image. Labour’s original poster is here.

The Tories have an exclusive Worldwide licence in Perpetuity to use this image of David Cameron, but the copyright remains the photographer’s. How do we know? The photographer who shot this famous “airbrushed” image is a friend of ours. (In the original photograph Cameron’s face isn’t actually retouched at all - he happens to look like that when well lit by a top-end photographer).

It is inconceivable that the Tories would have licenced the image to the Labour Party for use in a party political poster.

This poster is a de facto breach of copyright under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988, perpetrated by the same Government that on Tuesday April 6th wishes to grant itself powers enabling legally illiterate, ill-considered changes to that very Act.

Clause 43 of The Digital Economy Bill originated at the Intellectual Property Office, headed by The Rt Hon David Lammy MP, Minister of State for Higher Education and Intellectual Property, who has a Master’s Degree in Law from Harvard University.