Right of Publicity

Hmm … I tend to think this particular Founding Father would NOT be happy with Glenn Beck using his image … but he’s been dead for a long time. I bring that up for legal reasons, because helps to define what we call the “public domain.”

So actually, even though Shepard Fairey’s Obama art is legally problematic, I do wonder if Beck can do this under “fair use.”

Legal scholars, your opinion is welcome. (And those who have something to say about Glenn Beck…)

P.S. Glenn Beck “paints”?!?

Obama AdAlthough I was tired after a long redeye, I always love the drive into New York as the Manhattan skyline comes into view, and this time there was something new that completely woke me up — a giant billboard with Barack Obama modeling a jacket while standing on the Great Wall of China. It’s really a great shot. Of course I googled it as soon as I reached home, learning that I’m not the only one who worked out that the clothing company was assuming a sitting president wouldn’t sue for violation of his rights of privacy and publicity. Apparently the White House has asked for the billboards (there are more) to come down. From NY1:

The controversy surrounding a larger-than-life photo of President Barack Obama is stretching from Times Square to the White House.

Aides to the president are asking the company Weatherproof to remove its billboard in Times Square, which features a photo of the president in front of the Great Wall of China. The advertisement features the tagline “a leader in style.”