Mats for bear falling from Will Vill tree provided by CU Rec Center twitter.com/cuindependent/…
— CU Independent (@cuindependent) April 26, 2012
Andy Duann, a student at the University of Colorado Boulder, took a picture for the CU Independent of a tranquilized bear falling out of a tree. The photo was distributed by the school paper without Duann’s permission, and he is considering taking legal action against the paper.
The photo, which was placed on the Associated Press wire and was purchased by several news organizations, has since gone viral. Paul Colford, an Associated Press spokesman, told Poynter that the CU Independent made the photos available to the AP.
But over the weekend, the AP issued a “photo elimination” for Andy Duann’s shot. That’s an official call for organizations who used the photo to remove it.
“A copyright dispute has arisen between the photographer and the publication that made the photos available to the Associated Press,” the notice read. All four photos of Duann’s that AP had been distributing were pulled.
In a conversation with Matthew Keys of Reuters, Duann stated that the Independent has acknowledged he has the copyright to the photo.
If true, that would be an unusual change for the paper. Gil Asakawa, who advises the Independent, has maintained that the paper owns the copyright to the photo as recently as this afternoon. Asakawa did not reply to a request for comment.
Duann told Keys he was thankful for the exposure, but he that he “just want them to respect me and give me the copyright.”
How should photographers be compensated when their pictures go viral? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.
More About: copyright, copyright infringement, copyright law, viral
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