The Observer reports that the New York-based media/gossip blog Gawker has got itself into a spot of bother. Gawker posted a picture of the newborn baby of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie (unattractively dubbed the ‘Brangelina’) which seems to have been sourced from someone taking a picture of the front cover of Hello! magazine on a mobile phone at some point during the distribution process of the magazine. Hello!, which paid the Pitts £1.9m for the rights to publish photos of the baby, was not best pleased, and sent Gawker a letter pointing out that the UK law on fair use of copyright photos is a lot stricter than that in the US, and that Gawker’s use would not fit within it. As a result, Gawker barred its site to UK users, but has now replaced the Hello! cover with the cover of a US-based magazine, the People.
The IPKat says that it’s telling that this was pursued as a copyright claim, rather than a breach of confidence claim – the motivation here is financial, rather than privacy-based (though to be fair to the Pitts, they are reported to have donated their fee to charity).
Read the correspondence between Gawker and the lawyers here.
Sunday, 11 June 2006
Posted by Unknown at 12:51:00 p.m.