Evan Roth Vs. Everybody

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The world of copyright law is not a place where one finds much in the way of bright-lines or simple dichotomies. Or even heroes. So it shouldn’t be surprising when people who set themselves up as defenders of concepts like fair use turn out to be pretty douchebaggy. Evan Roth points this out in his contest, the Intellectual Property Asshole Competition.

Personally, I support Shepard Fairey’s contentions in his fight against the AP. I do so without hesitation. What Fairey did with Manny Garcia’s picture was transformative and fell well within what I consider the bounds of fair use. But that doesn’t mean I’ll support Fairey across the board–there are times where one can support the cause and dislike the standard bearer, and this is becoming one of those cases for me.


Brian Spears is Senior Poetry Editor of The Rumpus and the author of A Witness in Exile (Louisiana Literature Press, 2011). His poem “Upon Reading That Andromeda Will One Day Devour Triangulum and Come For Us Next” was featured in Season 9 of Motion Poems. More from this author →