On the left, a photo of cosplayer Lindze A’la Mode. On the right, an advertisement for PC and hardware company MSI.
Aside from the crime that it’s a terrible photoshop job, MSI is being taken to court in Georgia because the cosplayer and photographer involved in the original shot say it was made (and used for commercial purposes) without their permission.
Both Lindze and photographer Allison Rose’s names appear on a suit filed in July in Atlanta, accusing MSI of taking their copyrighted work—which was originally taken in 2013 for a charity calendar—and in June 2016 doctoring it for their advertisement, which appeared on MSI’s “websites and social media accounts”, and was “retweeted by Intel Corporation to its forty-five thousand followers.”
The image has since been removed from MSI’s Facebook and Twitter accounts.
The case accuses MSI of “knowingly, and with the intent to enable, conceal, and facilitate copyright infringement, provided and distributed false copyright management information with the [image]”. Both Lindze and Rose are seeking damages.
MSI’s response in court is based on the argument that the company lacked “knowledge or information sufficient to form a belief about the truth of the allegations...and therefore denies them”, and that their use of the image constituted “fair use”.
This kind of stuff needs to stop.