Wednesday, January 15, 2014

banner drama

It may not have escaped your notice that there's a new look at the top.  This isn't my choice; I was asked today by the University, in the same sense that TSA asks you to step over, latex gloves in hand, for a more thorough cavity search, to not use the images that used to be on the banner.  Copyright and all that.

I'm reasonably confident I could make a more-than-solid fair use case for doing so.  This isn't a commercial enterprise and I'm selling nothing.  The courts have specifically said collages are "transformative" and that makes them a fair use, and they've also specifically said they're not interested in tiny-sized copyright cases.  Eagles going after gnats don't impress them.  The school couldn't say which images, exactly, were copyrighted by them, although I can say for a fact they have no say about the Tony Bennett one, because this is that picture - obviously taken while he was at Washington State.**

That said,

2) this blog has never put so much as a sou into my pocket, so its budget cannot pay for a Snickers bar let alone a lawyer
3) fighting with people whose lawyer budgets are infinity times your own is a poor survival tactic

Besides, I suppose someone has a copyright on the Tony picture.  And I'm not really into pissing off the institution I profess to admire and root for.  This round goes to the Man.

So, in lieu of fighting City Hall, I need a new banner.  I'd been thinking of getting one this summer anyway, considering I have a countdown clock on the career of one of the prominently featured characters.  And, getting to the real point here, volunteers.  I can make a passable banner, but graphic artist is next to lawyer among the skills I don't have when I'm being honest with myself.  I offer nothing except your name credited how you like, same as with the last one, and I'll figure out some guidelines later.  (So don't, like, immediately whip something up and send it tomorrow morning.)

**Ironically, when the designer of that banner and I were going back and forth on drafts (which consisted of her doing the work while I opinionated) one of the early drafts included an image of London in Richmond gear.  Had that one stayed, would I have been able to say, go to hell, I'm using that picture?  Likely answer: yes, until they forwarded the note along to Richmond and then I would have had two schools on my case.


Anonymous said...

I don't blame you for complying, and like you said maybe it's time for a new banner anyway, but still… come on, UVA, that is LAME. Give me a break with that copyright crap. It's a blog. With a couple of generic pictures of coaches.

And let's face it, this site gives UVA athletics some serious, and I mean SERIOUS, promotion. Completely for free. And this is the thanks you get.

Dick-ish move, UVA lawyers.

Ah well, there are far bigger outrages in the world, and by all means let's get a banner without London in it.

In fact… I wonder if the football coach firin' day countdown timer was the real impetus for this letter from UVA's lawyers…

Anonymous said...

"In fact… I wonder if the football coach firin' day countdown timer was the real impetus for this letter from UVA's lawyers…"

I would assume so.

pezhoo said...

I think before The Sabre was The Sabre it was and they forced a change there too. For non-profit institutions, colleges are pretty aggressive about their brand.

ragekage said...

I'll chip in for a replacement banner.