Just yesterday I blogged about the great work Glamour Magazine has been doing to promote realistic body images. Now today, comes a related controversy. After Ralph Lauren created an ad using an emaciated model, a blog called “Photoshop Disasters” reposted it. And then the website Boing Boing reposted it with their own scathing article. This led to Lauren filing a copyright claim against the use of his ad in their article even though it clearly falls within fair use as commentary and criticism. But Boing Boing didn’t give up:
In response, Boing Boing editor Cory Doctorow issued a stern warning to Ralph Lauren yesterday on the website, saying that the company’s attempt to silence their criticism has only inspired them to step up their efforts in the future:
“Copyright law doesn’t give you the right to threaten your critics for pointing out the problems with your offerings. You should know better. And every time you threaten to sue us over stuff like this, we will:a) Reproduce the original criticism, making damned sure that all our readers get a good, long look at it, and;
b) Publish your spurious legal threat along with copious mockery, so that it becomes highly ranked in search engines where other people you threaten can find it and take heart; and
c) Offer nourishing soup and sandwiches to your models.”
All I’ve got to say to Boing Boing is keep up the good work and don’t let assholes get away with trying to silence critics.