...On recent post topics.
For one, you've probably read that The Associated Press has decided to assert its rights in the Manny Garcia v. Shepard Fairey Obama 'Hope' poster matter. (A further article here), most likely based on the research Tom Gralish did to uncover the source photo and photographer. (Note that the Obama campaign never used the first poster officially because of concerns about the rights to the original photograph.)
I contacted Carolyn E. Wright, the author of the Photographer's Legal Guide and the writer of the Photo Attorney blog, and she's written a post about the case. Her conclusion? She'd take the case for infringement, if it were presented to her, although copyright is always situational and it would take a court ruling to truly settle the matter. Her entire post is interesting.
Another little point not to be overlooked by photographers: consider that Manny Garcia may have taken one of the defining photographs of his career in this instance—the rare shot that many photojournalists only get once in a career, similar in its iconic nature (though not, perhaps, in intrinsic newsworthiness) to Alberto Korda's portrait of Che Guevara, Sam Shere's shot of the Hindenburg crash, or Joe Rosenthal's shot of the raising of the flag on Iwo Jima—but he's not likely to see any of the proceeds of any legal action or settlement between the AP and Fairey. Since he was a stringer for the AP at the time, his shot belongs to them. Granted, he probably wouldn't have been where he was or taken the shot at all if he weren't working for the AP at the time, but still. (A "stringer" is a freelancer hired part-time, or used regularly but intermittently by a magazine or newspaper but not on its staff.)
Face in the crowd
Switching gears, I know I've beaten David Bergman's Gigapan photo of the Inauguration half to death here (I'm guessing this will be the last mention), but I can't resist this nifty update. Here's my friend Bob Burnett and his family at the Inauguration...
...And here, after hearing about the Gigapan photo here on TOP, is what Bob was able to find in the crowd with a diligent search within the image of the area where he and his family were standing.
Pretty cool, I thought. Now Bob doesn't have to prove to his grandchildren that he was there.
(On an unrelated note, Bob, a film director, recently won CINE's Special Jury Award, one of their top honors, for his Wolf video made for Defenders of Wildlife. Congrats to Bob and his production team for that.)