Schlagwort-Archive: Modena

Italian political party NCD uses image without proper license?

Usually I wri­te my blog artic­les in German, but this time we will have a big Italian rea­der­ship, so to honor our new rea­ders I will ease it for them and use English.

What hap­pen­ed?

Yesterday I was infor­med by many Italian citi­zens that they found one of the illus­tra­ti­ons I offer for sale at stock agen­ci­es was used by the poli­ti­cal right-​wing par­ty NCD (Nuovo Centrodestra) in Modena in a con­text that is cle­ar­ly „anti-​gay“:

NCD advertisingThe ori­gi­nal image looks like this:

shutterstock gay couple 27-05-2015 18-10-16I offer the images at three stock pho­to agen­ci­es: Fotolia, Shutterstock and Bigstock.
All three have sold the – fair­ly new – image one time so far. But: All of the­se licen­ses have been „stan­dard licenses“.

Let’s have a quick look:

Fotolia sta­tes in their usa­ge terms:

3. Restrictions
3.1 General Restrictions. You must not misu­se the Work. Except as express­ly per­mit­ted in Section 2 abo­ve, you must not:[
[…] e. use, repro­du­ce, dis­tri­bu­te, per­form, modi­fy, or dis­play the Work (inclu­ding, wit­hout limi­ta­ti­on, by its­elf or in com­bi­na­ti­on with any other work of aut­hor­ship) in any man­ner that is libe­lous or slan­de­rous or other­wi­se defa­ma­to­ry, obs­ce­ne or indecent
[…] i. use the Work in a way that places any per­son in the pho­to in a bad light or depicts them in a way that they may find offen­si­ve – this includes, but is not limi­t­ed to:
[…] IV. poli­ti­cal endorsements“

Shutterstock says in their licen­se agree­ment:


  1. […] ii. Depict any per­son depic­ted in Visual Content (a „Model“) in a way that a reasonable per­son would find offen­si­ve, inclu­ding but not limi­t­ed to depic­ting a Model:
    […] c) as endor­sing a poli­ti­cal par­ty, can­di­da­te, elec­ted offi­ci­al, or opinion; […]
  2. Use any Visual Content in a por­no­gra­phic, defa­ma­to­ry, or decep­ti­ve con­text, or in a man­ner that could be con­side­red libe­lous, obs­ce­ne, or illegal.“

Bigstock, who is owned by Shutterstock, has very simi­lar image usa­ge agree­ment:


  1. […] Use any Content in a way that places any per­son depic­ted in the Content in a way that a reasonable per­son would find offen­si­ve – this includes, but is not limi­t­ed to the use of Content: […] d) in con­nec­tion with poli­ti­cal endor­se­ments; […] g) in any man­ner that is defa­ma­to­ry, or con­ta­ins unlawful or offen­si­ve content.“

 I still don’t know if NCD bought the image, becau­se I am still miss­ing feed­back from some of the agen­ci­es and my mail to the NCD has not yet been answered.

But let’s assu­me they did:
In my opi­ni­on the usa­ge would still be unlawful, becau­se it is „endor­sing a poli­ti­cal par­ty“ and is defa­ma­to­ry and offen­si­ve to dif­fe­rent groups of people.

Maybe it also means that the NCD is not able to read a con­tract (becau­se that’s what a licen­se agree­ment basi­cal­ly is), which might not be the best trait for a poli­ti­cal par­ty who wants to draft new laws.

I will con­sult with my lawy­er and will deci­de later if I will take legal action.

On a side note:
I am puz­zled why they had to remo­ve the hair of the guy on the right side? Is it becau­se he loo­ked too cute? Is it becau­se they serious­ly belie­ve that gay peo­p­le will loo­se all their hair? (I try hard to avo­id the pun with the „right wing loo­ses its hair“)

Just as a sign of what this gay cou­ple real­ly stands for (and to cele­bra­te Ireland’s vote for mar­ria­ge equa­li­ty) my team and me deci­ded to give away this image for free:

happy-gay-couple-with-rainbow-flagIt is free for pri­va­te and com­mer­cial use, but all the­se full licen­se terms of Shutterstock apply!
So just to be sure and to spell it out: No, NCD, you may not use it in a cam­paign against same-​sex mar­ria­ge and adoption!

If you are inte­res­ted in simi­lar images, here is a light­box with more illus­tra­ti­ons that can be licensened:
Diversity & Inclusion“ (Fotolia) or „Diversity & Inclusion“ (Shutterstock).

Have a gay day!