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Flickr Yanks Image of Obama As Joker

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the such-treatment-is-only-for-the-old-boss dept.

Censorship 869

An anonymous reader writes "An interesting article yesterday about the unmasking of the recent creator of the controversial and iconic Obama/Joker image that has been popping up around Los Angeles with the word Socialism under it. The Los Angeles Times has identified the images' creator as Firas Alkhateeb. Even more interesting though is the fact that after getting over 20,000 hits on the image at Flickr, Flickr removed the image from Alkateeb's photostream, citing 'copyright' concerns. The image in question is clearly both an independent derivative work and unquestionably a parody of the President and Time Magazine which would be covered under fair use. It has appeared on many other sites without issue on the Internet." According to the same reader, "Flickr also recently nuked a user's entire photostream over negative comments on President Obama's official photostream."

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Free speech and democracy? (4, Insightful)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 5 years ago | (#29122841)

Does freedom of speech mean anything anymore?

Re:Free speech and democracy? (4, Insightful)

boarder8925 (714555) | more than 5 years ago | (#29122883)

No, and it never has, really. It's always been a buzzword.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (3, Funny)

Feyshtey (1523799) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123485)

The cool thing is that its so true and you have the right to say so.

Wait...

Re:Free speech and democracy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29122885)

The government didn't have anything to do with this. This was probably Flickr trying to dodge a copyright lawsuit(as retarded as that sounds).

Re:Free speech and democracy? (2, Interesting)

v1 (525388) | more than 5 years ago | (#29122971)

tho if it was taken from the cover of Time magazine, someone made the original image with some photoshopping, it may not be far enough separated from the original to be considered a derivative. It's not parody either.

It's possible that Time (whoever makes the mag) themselves contacted Flickr with a takedown?

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

R2.0 (532027) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123289)

"It's not parody either."

Per Wikipedia: A parody (pronounced /pærdi/; also called send-up or spoof), in contemporary usage, is a work created to mock, comment on, or poke fun at an original work, its subject, or author, or some other target, by means of humorous, satiric or ironic imitation.

Looks like a parody to me.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (4, Informative)

Toonol (1057698) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123293)

It's a political parody. It's VERY hard to pursue claims of copyright infringement against specifically political speech; the courts are very conservative about such things.

The EFF has also gone on record saying they didn't think this was an infringing image.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29123403)

flickr should be looking forward to a law suit.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

Em Emalb (452530) | more than 5 years ago | (#29122891)

Sure, but they're still bound by Flckr's* terms of service.

*h n, 've lst ll my vwls!

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123267)

*h n, 've lst ll my vwls!

<Cough>

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123345)

*h n, 've lst ll my vwls!

<Cough>

(S)COFF

Re:Free speech and democracy? (5, Insightful)

winkydink (650484) | more than 5 years ago | (#29122909)

Flickr is a company, not a government. You have no constitutional right of free speech on Flickr.

Sucks, I know, but that's the way it is.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (4, Funny)

L4t3r4lu5 (1216702) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123107)

Hey, winkydink! Stop thinking so hard! Can't you just show the same level of blind and ignorant hatred as the rest of us? We wanted to have a rant about how corporate America was stripping away our freedoms, how we were losing our rights, and how the Gooberment was full of totalitarian assholes!

Now we'll have to kick some puppies to vent our frustrations. Thanks a lot, puppy hater.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1, Insightful)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123123)

Didn't stop timmeh the braindead editor from slapping a fascism tag on TFS though.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (5, Insightful)

TubeSteak (669689) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123147)

Flickr is a company, not a government. You have no constitutional right of free speech on Flickr.

The issue is slightly more complicated when the government turns corporate websites into official media distribution channels.
Examples: The White House flickr page, twitter page, facebook page, etc.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123411)

The issue is slightly more complicated when the government turns corporate websites into official media distribution channels. Examples: The White House flickr page, twitter page, facebook page, etc.

Only if, for some weird reason, the gubmint isn't bound by the Terms Of Service of those websites. Otherwise, not complicated at all.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (4, Insightful)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123165)

You were one of many people to respond with this exact sentiment. I'll just respond to you.

I know that a private site has the right to moderate as they see fit. This isn't the removal of pornography, or racist material, illegal material, or any of the usual suspects that would warrant such a removal.

This is Flickr (a US based company) telling its users that they aren't entitled to express political opinions. Does Flickr have the right? It is their site, so yes they do.

Should Flickr censor people however? No. I would hope the democratic principles that supposedly infuse this country would be reflected by US businesses to a certain extent. I hope this turns into the Streisand Effect, wherein trying to censor this image, they only bring far more attention to themselves.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (2, Interesting)

Toonol (1057698) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123351)

I wonder how even-handed they are about it. I imagine there's a fair number of photoshops of Bush on Flickr, based on copyrighted images. Is it just that this one achieved notoriety?

Re:Free speech and democracy? (5, Insightful)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123353)

This is Flickr (a US based company) telling its users that they aren't entitled to express political opinions

Actually, this is Flickr telling it's users that oppose Obama that they are not entitled to express their political opinions. There's still tons of GWB photos out there that make this Joker image look rather tame. Don't take my word for it. Go onto Flickr and search for George Bush and look at the pictures. Then search for Obama and compare those to the GWB pics. I could not find a single negative Obama pic. I had a difficult time finding a positive GWB pic. And please don't try to tell me that 100% of Flickr's users love Obama and hate Bush.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

sbeckstead (555647) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123479)

So what you are saying is that Flickr is exercising their right to support their political party of choice throught he media that they own. Kind of like the opposite of Fox right.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

horatio (127595) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123363)

This is Flickr (a US based company) telling its users that they aren't entitled to express political opinions. Does Flickr have the right? It is their site, so yes they do.

I agree. However, hiding behind "copyright" laws as a way of suppressing speech is wrong. This thinly veiled approach uses the threat of sanctions by the gov't (copyright infringement either through civil or criminal proceedings) to chill dissent. This is pretty clearly fair use/parody if there ever was. If you disagree with the content of the message, and that is why you're taking it down, at least have the rocks to say so.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

sbeckstead (555647) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123545)

Who said they cited copyright laws to take it down. They just took it down. Probably covering their ass in any case. Since Fair Use is only a positive defense against a law suit there is no actual "Fair Use" in the law so even if they did cite copyright concerns they have that right as not wanting to defend themselves against said law suit.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

qortra (591818) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123447)

You're absolutely right that Flickr does not have to uphold free speech - they are not the government.

However, we (its users) have the right to protest behavior that we believe to be counter-productive. This is such an example. Don't fault the Slashdot folk who are upset about this - customers have the right to complain about a company's behavior on a forum like this, and sometimes those people get heard (rare though it is).

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

Pezistential (1444245) | more than 5 years ago | (#29122917)

Maybe it's free as in beer...

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

SkankinMonkey (528381) | more than 5 years ago | (#29122923)

Freedom of speech is something that the government has to allow, not privately owned websites. Their terms are set by the owners/administrators.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

BassMan449 (1356143) | more than 5 years ago | (#29122929)

Unfortunately the guarantee of free speech in the 1st amendment only applies to the government. Flickr is a company and can do as they please.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29122947)

It is disgusting. If all of it were the same crap except Bush, there would be no problem. We just need to look at the owners of Flickr to determine what's going on.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#29122989)

Freedom of speech is also the freedome NOT to speak. It's Flickr's right to supress anything on their own website they want, just as it's your right to post or not post there; that right is just as important as the right to produce the parody. Flikr isn't the only place to post funny pics, you know.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (2, Insightful)

Toonol (1057698) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123401)

But, to work, we need to be free to express condemnation of Flickr.

Which we are, and everybody seems to be doing, so I guess everything is right with the world.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

DankNinja (241851) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123013)

This has nothing to do with Freedom of Speech.

Corporate Censorship has nothing to do with Freedom of Speech.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freedom_of_speech [wikipedia.org]

Re:Free speech and democracy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29123183)

This has nothing to do with Freedom of Speech.
Corporate Censorship has nothing to do with Freedom of Speech.

It has everything to do with freedom of speech... it just has nothing to do with the legal right to freedom of speech! :)

Re:Free speech and democracy? (-1, Flamebait)

Henry V .009 (518000) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123221)

Moron. A correct statement, maybe, would be that "corporate censorship is not prohibited by the first amendment of the American constitution under current SCOTUS interpretation."

Saying that corporate censorship has no relation to free speech is wrong and stupid. It's a very important consideration when looking at speech issues.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29123475)

Next time if you can make your point without insulting people, I won't mod you flamebait.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

Homburg (213427) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123371)

Corporate Censorship has nothing to do with Freedom of Speech.

Yes it does. Just because most constitutional provisions only protect freedom of speech from government interference, it doesn't mean that other forms of interference with speech aren't also damaging. Indeed, if it is bad to allow governments to prevent free speech, would it not also be bad to allow other organizations to use their power to interfere with speech.

Your wikipedia link does nothing to support your claim that only government censorship is relevant to freedom of speech, by the way.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29123167)

Freedom of speech does not imply that you can say anything anywhere. No one took the right of posting such images on an own website, which would affect free speech. Flickr just didn't want this image on their site, which is perfectly fine.

Re:Free speech and democracy? (2, Insightful)

pilgrim23 (716938) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123229)

Flickr is just demonstrating their political views by removing that which they disagree with. Seems pretty normal these days, to me....

Re:Free speech and democracy? (1)

Toonol (1057698) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123489)

Exactly. They have the RIGHT to do so, the DESIRE to do so, and the STUPIDITY to actually do it.

real reason I'm depressed (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29122865)

is because I can't fucking get laid.

I'm 6'3", 240 lbs, which is fat, but I do lift weights 4 times a week and do the elliptical for 45 minutes 6 days a week. I buy new clothes and try to dress decent. I shower every day. I *CAN'T* fucking get laid. that's why I'm depressed.

dear god, someone help me.

Re:real reason I'm depressed (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29123513)

Look, I get a lot of pussy. I'm one of those guys who can go to the store to buy some groceries and end up in the parking lot, fucking a bored housewife/milf in the back of her suv (happened a couple months ago). I've got a handful of fuck buddies, throw in some random hookups and a girl I'm dating. I have no problem getting laid.

Now, I could tell you how to get some ass, but it wouldn't do you any good. What's important is not "how", but "why". When you figure that out, you'll get your dick wet.

From the second article (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29122877)

According to the same reader, "Flickr also recently nuked an entire user's photostream over negative comments on President Obama's official photostream."

From that article, it appears the user violated Flickr's community guidelines, as his posts were initially removed, and then in response, he posted (on the same picture it appears) links to tortured prisoners. I'm sure that Flickr views the White House photo's as family friendly material and I'm not surprised that they're strictly moderated.

Hmmm... (2, Insightful)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 5 years ago | (#29122907)

Seems Flikr's owners are Democrats; or maybe they're Republicans afraid of backlash. I wonder what they'd have done if they were there while Bush was in office if he had been similarly parodied? I know if it had happened to Bush, the neocons would have had pitchforks in hand.

I think Flikr's removal of the parody was in extremely poor taste. The picture's a joke, son. Grow a sense of humor! Seems to me a bit of political correctness gone even more crazy. Political correctness offends me almost as much as real censorship.

Also, I wonder if the Streisand Effect will hit?

Re:Hmmm... (5, Insightful)

cml4524 (1520403) | more than 5 years ago | (#29122961)

Seems Flikr's owners are Democrats; or maybe they're Republicans afraid of backlash

Or maybe jumpy business people worried they'll get in the middle of a legal mess they'd rather not get involved in.

But why stick with more obvious motivations when you can turn everything into a retarded political pissing match, right?

Re:Hmmm... (3, Interesting)

Totenglocke (1291680) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123285)

But why stick with more obvious motivations when you can turn everything into a retarded political pissing match, right?

Yes, because it's not like we experience that kind of politcal bias here on Slashdot all the time where people get modded down because someone of the other party had mod points......

Re:Hmmm... (1)

jimbolauski (882977) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123473)

If the order came from the exects you might have a point, more then likely an admin removed it due to someone complaining about the image and the admin had similar political beliefs.

Re:Hmmm... (1)

cml4524 (1520403) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123503)

And your evidence of this is... what?

Re:Hmmm... (1)

qortra (591818) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123493)

Or maybe jumpy business people worried they'll get in the middle of a legal mess they'd rather not get involved in.

Incredibly, these people would rather trade a legal mess for a PR mess. Certainly, they didn't think that this would stay quiet.

Re:Hmmm... (2, Funny)

cellurl (906920) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123007)

Agreed. The Black man will not have equality until open ridicule is permissible. I bet BO contacts them to put it back up.

Re:Hmmm... (1)

diablovision (83618) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123033)

I wonder what they'd have done if they were there while Bush was in office if he had been similarly parodied? I know if it had happened to Bush, the neocons would have had pitchforks in hand.

I don't remember any neo-cons with pitchforks at these rallies [zombietime.com] .

Re:Hmmm... (1)

Abreu (173023) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123223)

At least those rallies were not protesting brain-dead stuff like demanding to see Bush's birth certificate.

If I remember correctly, Bush was ridiculed, parodied and protested* because he had launched an unjustifiable war against Irak, killing hundreds of thousands of innocents...

* Yes, and depicted as Hitler, Superman, Uncle Sam and the Joker)

Re:Hmmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29123517)

If I remember correctly...

Well, you didn't correctly remember how to spell "IRAQ", so I won't even begin to comment on what you seem to remember of what else happened.

Re:Hmmm... (3, Insightful)

Enderandrew (866215) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123541)

Is that the same war that all the major Democrats voted for?

And was it the same Iraq that Clinton bombed without asking permission? Was it the same Iraq that Clinton said was pursing WMD? Was it the same Iraq that had rape/torture rooms in the police offices, shut off water to towns, and was keeping food out? Was it the same Iraq were 30 million lives were in jeopardy, and the people thanked the US for liberating them?

In reality, both parties supported going into Iraq. You can question whether or not the war was justified (despite Iraq violating over 75 security resolutions, and the UN saying if they weren't 100% complicit, then the cease-fire of 1991 was null and void, authorizing military intervention). But you can't pin the war on one person. The President can't go to war. Congress goes to war. And Congress had no problem with it.

Re:Hmmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29123061)

Political correctness offends me almost as much as real censorship.
Agreed.
It is just as bad. And you are not fooling anyone either.
Someone said that believing in political correctness is like believing that you can pick up turd by the clean end.

Re:Hmmm... (4, Insightful)

jpmorgan (517966) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123069)

Yeah, it's amazing how we made it through 8 years of the Bush presidency without anybody photoshopping pictures of George Bush. If that had happened, the neocons would have rioted, man!

Did you just crawl out from under a rock and miss the past 8 years of the internet? I think for all the things you can criticize Bush and the 'neocons' for, not being able to take a joke, is not one of them.

Re:Hmmm... (4, Interesting)

Skye16 (685048) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123359)

Actually, they never could take a joke. Not with good grace and humor, at any rate. But that's okay, it's often hard for people to do that when they care passionately about the subject in question. That's kind of basic to the vast majority of humans, really. The rather unfortunate part of it is that people degenerate to such infantile gestures. These gestures, in turn, can probably be traced to back to being incapable of holding a rational, respectful conversation with someone of differing viewpoint, whether because of their own inability or the opposition's inability. Eventually it degenerates to a useless shouting and cockmongery that does not help the democratic process in the slightest. It's most unfortunate, but in a democracy, even the retards get their say. I suppose what's most unfortunate about it is that retards tend to be much louder than the thoughtful types, though your mileage may vary.

Re:Hmmm... (4, Insightful)

ArcherB (796902) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123173)

Seems Flikr's owners are Democrats; or maybe they're Republicans afraid of backlash. I wonder what they'd have done if they were there while Bush was in office if he had been similarly parodied? I know if it had happened to Bush, the neocons would have had pitchforks in hand.

I think Flikr's removal of the parody was in extremely poor taste. The picture's a joke, son. Grow a sense of humor! Seems to me a bit of political correctness gone even more crazy. Political correctness offends me almost as much as real censorship.

Also, I wonder if the Streisand Effect will hit?

I looks like there are plenty of Bush [flickr.com] parodies [flickr.com] out [flickr.com] there. [flickr.com]

Most of which make the Joker/Obama image look quite tame.

This is not unusual as most in the media, including Internet media, are liberal and will only allow their talking points to be heard. It's funny how the group that screams for equal treatment and equal rights is so quick to silence any that oppose them.

Re:Hmmm... (1)

sycodon (149926) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123181)

I wonder what they'd have done if they were there while Bush was in office if he had been similarly parodied?

Are you kidding me? Parodies of Obama are amateur league when compared to what has been done with Bush

Re:Hmmm... (1)

psnyder (1326089) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123241)

I know if it had happened to Bush, the neocons would have had pitchforks in hand.

Just do a Google image search.
George Bush Joker [google.com]

Vanity fair even published it on their website [vanityfair.com] .

Re:Hmmm... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29123315)

"I know if it had happened to Bush, the neocons would have had pitchforks in hand."

Really? You mean something like this [declubz.com] ? or maybe this [littlegreenfootballs.com] ?

Or for Bush-as-Hitler:

this [ringospictures.com] or this [zombietime.com] ?

The fact is, this stuff was dirt common over the last eight years, and no neocons were freaking out, with or without pitchforks. This sort of thing is dumb now, but it was dumb then too, and nobody cared. What's the difference now? Just that you like Obama and didn't like Bush?

Re:Hmmm... (5, Insightful)

OeLeWaPpErKe (412765) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123361)

"the neocons would have had pitchforks in hand"

Really ? Then where are those pitchforks ? Where was the BusHitler backlash ? There was absolutely no shortage of anti-bush rhetoric, imagery, or anything. Blatantly racist imagery, faked imagery, faked evidence, death threats, ... no shortage at all.

Of course pointing out that as far as policy comparisons go, it's Obama's policies that resemble those of the ("early") Hitler : govt. healthcare, govt. takeover of car companies, stimulus money on creating his own civilians corps, ... all those policies were implemented by both. Now pointing that out, no matter how true (and how irrelevant), is racist.

Re:Hmmm... (1)

R2.0 (532027) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123405)

"Also, I wonder if the Streisand Effect will hit?"

Already has - I had heard about it, but had no real interest until now. So I looked at it.

Black man in whiteface - why is this "iconic"? Aren't we throwing that term around a bit freely these days?

Re:Hmmm... (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123407)

Speaking as a liberal myself, I'm got sick of all the Obama worship a long time ago. Voting for the guy and treating him as some sort of deity are different things, people! At the end of the day he's just another politician. Stop treating him as if he were somehow above criticism. I may agree with him on health care, but God knows many of us on the left have plenty of bones to pick with him too.

Hmm... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29122939)

Why is flicker taking this issue so seriously?

Time Magazine should be wrist-slapped also? (2, Insightful)

EraserMouseMan (847479) | more than 5 years ago | (#29122969)

It is interesting that when Time did this very thing to a photo of Bush our unbiased main-stream media thought it was thought-provoking and no censorship or wrist-slapping was encouraged.

Re:Time Magazine should be wrist-slapped also? (4, Informative)

cml4524 (1520403) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123099)

when Time did this very thing to a photo of Bush

Proof? I'm finding exactly nothing of the sort, and all similar searches lead to a cartoonist's drawing published in Vanity Fair.

Re:Time Magazine should be wrist-slapped also? (1)

dburkland (1526971) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123193)

Re:Time Magazine should be wrist-slapped also? (1)

cml4524 (1520403) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123397)

First of all, that's not a picture of Bush as the Joker. Second of all, why in the world would anybody find that offensive?

So.... (5, Insightful)

reidiq (1434945) | more than 5 years ago | (#29122973)

It's ok to have a picture of Bush as Hitler/Joker/Satan, but Obama is clearly off limits.

Re:So.... (1, Insightful)

Abreu (173023) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123249)

Obama is not (yet) responsible for the deaths of innocents. Bush is.

Re:So.... (2, Insightful)

ivan256 (17499) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123379)

Oh really? [peaceactionwest.org]

Re:So.... (2, Insightful)

cml4524 (1520403) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123279)

but Obama is clearly off limits.

Flickr says they took it down over copyright concerns. Are you:

a) Calling them liars
b) Someone who didn't bother to RTFA
c) Trying to play the victim card and cry about oppression that doesn't appear to actually exist

Re:So.... (1)

kaizendojo (956951) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123431)

If Time took the picture of Bush or Obama or paid for the rights to it, then yes it is ok. Flickr doesn't have such assurances so they acted appropriately. If you really want to see it that badly, Google it. If you want to run the risk of rights infringement, feel free to post it on your own web site.

Funny (4, Interesting)

krou (1027572) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123001)

What I love is that the creator of the image, Firas Alkhateeb, has seen his work *cough* borrowed by the Republicans as an anti-Obama anti-Socialist campaign, but his actual intention with the image was to protest about Obama not being liberal enough. (And the fact that Alkhateeb is a Palestinian makes me smile, too.)

Re:Funny (3, Interesting)

Abreu (173023) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123385)

Indeed.

Here in Mexico, Rius (a well-known political cartoonist and avowed socialist) once said that he regretted not expressing the criticisms he had for the Soviet Union and Cuba. He refrained from doing it because he "did not want to give ammunition to the enemy".

I wonder if Alkhateeb has similar second thoughts...

You get what you pay for... (2, Informative)

blg42 (1484007) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123023)

With pseudo free services such as Flickr, you have to abide by their terms of service. Expect them to err on the side of caution rather than risk litigation by large companies. My guess is they were more worried about Time magazine being referenced than the president. According to their terms of service: "You acknowledge that Yahoo! may or may not pre-screen Content, but that Yahoo! and its designees shall have the right (but not the obligation) in their sole discretion to pre-screen, refuse, or remove any Content that is available via the Yahoo! Services. Without limiting the foregoing, Yahoo! and its designees shall have the right to remove any Content that violates the TOS or is otherwise objectionable. You agree that you must evaluate, and bear all risks associated with, the use of any Content, including any reliance on the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of such Content. In this regard, you acknowledge that you may not rely on any Content created by Yahoo! or submitted to Yahoo!, including without limitation information in Yahoo! Message Boards and in all other parts of the Yahoo! Services." Note the phrase "otherwise objectionable". Nice vague language to give themselves the right to remove just about anything. Even though the image was probably copyrighted, it might not have been removed if the rest of Time magazine cover had not also been reproduced. Some might argue that that was implying that Time some how shared the views of the poster (granted that is a bit of a stretch).

Tagged fascism? (1)

linumax (910946) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123031)

So private businesses don't have a say on what can / can't appear on their websites anymore because that would constitute fascism?

Meet the new boss.... (1)

Slash.Poop (1088395) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123035)

Same as the old boss!

Re:Meet the new boss.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29123115)

Meet the new cliche, same as the old cliche.

Remember, Teabaggers... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29123055)

...the Internet is our domain. We'll step in when we feel like it.

Not a free speech issue. (4, Insightful)

bmo (77928) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123067)

You have as much right to political trolling in Flicker as you do standing on a soapbox in your local mall.

You are allowed to troll so long as the management approves.

--
BMO

Not clearly fair use (3, Insightful)

Homburg (213427) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123083)

Unquestionably a parody of the President and Time Magazine which would be covered under fair use.

It's not "unquestionable" at all. First of all, the fact that it's a parody of the President does not make it fair use - to be fair use as a parody, something has to be a parody of the copyright work, not the subject of that work. Second, it's not at all obvious to me that this is a parody of Time Magazine. What feature of the Time cover is being parodied, exactly? It seems to me that the image in question is using the Time photograph to produce an unrelated piece of work commenting on the President. That's no more fair use than, say, sampling a record to produce a new track is fair use.

I think you could make a good case that this kind of transformative use of copyright material ought to be generally allowed, but it doesn't help that case to exaggerate the actual scope of fair-use rights to make derivative works.

Re:Not clearly fair use (1)

clone53421 (1310749) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123307)

Have you actually seen the parody in question [latimes.com] ? It's not the "Socialism" picture that you're probably thinking of. It is, quite obviously, a parody of a Time magazine cover.

The "Socialism" picture was a derivative of the magazine cover parody.

Re:Not clearly fair use (1)

Homburg (213427) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123449)

Yes, I have seen it. Of course it looks like a Time magazine cover, but it's not clear to me that it is a parody of that cover. Again - what, exactly, is it parodying? It might be a parody, but it's not, as the summary claimed, unquestionably one.

Re:Not clearly fair use (1)

Rich0 (548339) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123389)

I would also consider the fact that probably 80% of the space in the original cover is obscured by the change. While a likeness of Joker is drawn, this does not directly copy an depictions of the Joker that have been made (and the idea of painting somebody's face white and red isn't copyrightable). It doesn't call him the "joker" either (which is a very weak trademark anyway - when the guy looks like a fairly traditional depiction of a joker).

The content is also political in nature.

Fair use is a set of principles. So, it is hard to say with certainty whether something is fair use. However, I'd say that anybody who wants to sue this guy is going to have a very hard time. What damages would they even claim? Are people not going to buy the magazine from months ago because they've already gotten to read the cover they put on the newstand shelf as an advertisement for all to see? Are people not going to watch The Dark Knight since they've already gotten to see what the Joker looks like? The guy isn't even making money off of this.

They'd be lucky to get a dollar...

Dislaimer, IANAL...

Re:Not clearly fair use (3, Informative)

Cytotoxic (245301) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123441)

to be fair use as a parody, something has to be a parody of the copyright work, not the subject of that work. Second, it's not at all obvious to me that this is a parody of Time Magazine. What feature of the Time cover is being parodied, exactly?

Congratulations, in traditional slashdot fashion, you forgot to RTFA. The original work on Flickr was a version of the Time Magazine cover with the doctored Obama photo. According to the artist, it was done out of curiosity about photoshopping an image and not really any sort of political statement (educational, also fair use). A different faceless internet artist grabbed his photoshop and did more photoshopping to produce the poster with "Socialist" on it. And you might want to read up on parody, I don't think you really came close in your analysis of the legal definition of parody. But, I'm no lawyer, so I won't pretend my opinion on the matter carries any weight.

What's the point? (3, Informative)

R2.0 (532027) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123153)

I'm sure that the Obama administration has his info on file already through the http://www.whitehouse.gov/realitycheck/ [whitehouse.gov] website.

Isn't anyone else bothered ONE LITTLE BIT by the administration asking people to forward email rumors, etc., critical of the Obama or "the health care plan"? The site says "please don't forward names, etc." but they publicly ask that those things be forwarded. So if you have a slightly conspiracy minded friend, and you are one of the many recipients of his email, guess what - the Administration likely has your email address.

Hope And Change (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#29123209)

  Regret your vote yet, you fucking fascist pieces of shit? Anybody who voted for this thug( or McCain, for that matter )deserves to develop bone cancer and die - slowly, without painkillers.

Not all... (5, Insightful)

Mantrid42 (972953) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123259)

My friend told me he saw a few of these and he was very upset. Not about the portrayl of Obama, but that they don't understand the Joker at all. Anarchy is more his flavour than Socialism.

Re:Not all... (1)

avandesande (143899) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123505)

What about you? I don't understand the connection either. Please help those that are humor impaired :-)

Re:Not all... (1)

Icegryphon (715550) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123521)

Why So SERIOUS?

Agree with the artist and then some (4, Insightful)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123271)

From TFA:

Regardless, [the artist who made the original Obama Joker image] Alkhateeb does agree with the Obama "Hope" artist about "socialism" being the wrong caption for the Joker image. "It really doesn't make any sense to me at all," he said. "To accuse him of being a socialist is really ... immature. First of all, who said being a socialist is evil?""

Even more so, combining the accusation of Socialism with a depiction of Obama as the Joker makes no fucking sense. The Joker was about chaos and anarchy which is so far away from Socialism that the juxtaposition just strikes me as ludicrous. All it does is make the one who put the poster together look like an ignoramus. I can see the thought train-wreck now: "Lessee... Socialism is evil, and the Joker is evil, so the Joker equals Socialism!" Yeah, I doubt someone that bright even knows what they're accusing the president of. Other than that they're trying to tie him with "evil".

So take a clever image which the artist says wasn't intended as a political message (even though he criticizes Obama), add some moronic twat who thinks it's the perfect political message, and you get something that makes your average political cartoon look intelligent. It'd be like taking those stupid Bushies-In-Drag images, slapping haphazard labels on them like "Immigration Reform" or "Emperialism" and acting like you're a political genius.

Re:Agree with the artist and then some (3, Informative)

Homburg (213427) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123525)

The Joker was about chaos and anarchy which is so far away from Socialism that the juxtaposition just strikes me as ludicrous.

It depends what kind of socialism [blackened.net] you're talking about. Of course, though Obama isn't a socialist of any sort, he's even less a libertarian socialist than he is a social democrat (which I think is what people mean when they accuse him of being a socialist).

eh, could be worse. (1)

nimbius (983462) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123309)

the dixie chicks were silently blacklisted from clearchannel and affiliate stations for criticizing the president publicly, ultimately ending their rise to fame.

fox news had been known to fire anchors and staff critical of the bush administration rather regularly as well.

things like this happen during every presidency. unfortunately i dont think its likely to stop anytime soon. thanks to the internet though there are other venues and locations this rogue artist can exercise his freedom of speech (ironically in some cases not based in america!)

We need to add a !!facism tag! (1)

Again (1351325) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123413)

I just want to know, is it fascism or is it not fascism? I'm confused because we have both tags.

Personally, I find the image on Flickr interesting (1)

denveryoyo (1621137) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123439)

As a photographer and a die hard liberal, I find nothing offensive with the picture. Political art is both beautiful and uncomfortable. It both satisfies viewer's interests and generates discussion. Obviously this piece has generated a lot of discussion, and his piece is clearly a parody of the Time's cover. However, I DO take issue with SOMEONE ELSE taking the image off Flickr WITHOUT the artist's permission, editing it and posting it throughout the city. That was a clear violation of the artist's copyright. Flickr was completely within their rights to remove the image. In fact, part of their Terms of Service allows them to remove anything they deem offensive. That is why I refuse to post images there. I hope the artist continues his work and they catch the person who stole his piece off Flickr. Afterall, he is the people who clearly broke the law.

See! See! See! (1)

KharmaWidow (1504025) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123455)

You can't trust the Democrats not to censor, either. Especially Democrats in online and IT positions.

No more pro account for me (1)

viridari (1138635) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123465)

I had a Pro account with Flickr [flickr.com] but I had some other issues with Flickr that caused me to allow it to lapse. In the meantime I've been checking out other sites, and the one that seems most Flickr-like without the culture of censorship running it behind the scenes is iPernity [ipernity.com] .

If you're in the US, due to currency exchange rates their equivalent of a Pro account costs a bit more but it's still pretty reasonable.

The poster is stupid (2, Insightful)

Rising Ape (1620461) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123535)

That poster doesn't even make sense. What has Obama got to do with the Joker? Nothing What has the Joker got to do with Socialism? Nothing. What does Obama have to do with Socialism? Nothing, by any reasonable definition of the term. It's as if someone just splattered their incoherent thoughts onto a page.

Interesting! (1)

Anachragnome (1008495) | more than 5 years ago | (#29123537)

I had misread the summary as "OSAMA/Joker".

I find it very discomforting that my opinion had already formed that quickly, as I soon realized my mistake and noticed how I responded once I read it correctly.

I really didn't care when I thought it said Osama, but I DID care when I realized it said Obama.

Very interesting AND INsightful in an introspective sort of way...

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