Madison Photographers Unleash Monkey And Badger On Us! (UPDATED AND BUMPED)

February 25, 2011

Taking a peek behind the scenes here for a minute, Big Government received the following comment through their feedback form:

From: jenny

Date: Thu, 24 Feb 2011 10:50:21 -0800

Subject: Site Feedback

I would like to request that you remove my photo that you have used in the article I’ve linked to below. I have not given permission for this photo to be used, and, if you’ve noticed, all of my photos are copyrighted with all rights reserved. I was not contacted about us of my photo, and I consider this to be improper usage. Please remove my photo from your site. Thank you. Photo: Article:

The image referenced in Jenny’s letter was used as part of a post on Progressive snobbery – as witnessed in the images of protests signs coming out of Madison.

This is how it was used:

jenny image

There was never any attempt to use Jenny’s image in an unauthorized way. All we did was use the embed code that was publicly available with the image Jenny posted. We didn’t download it. If you clicked on the image, it took you to Jenny’s Flickr page.

Jenny might not like this site, but the use of the publicly available embed code is not at all inconsistent with the use of a public embed code made available by a host of other services, e.g., ¬†YouTube, EyeBlast, Blip, etc…

If Jenny doesn’t want people embedding her content, she could choose not to make that code available. Or she could act like a child, and replace her image with the following petulance.


Note to Jenny: It’s not stealing. We were using the publicly available embed code, just as we are for the childish replacement image you have furnished. But while we are on the subject, Jenny, do you have all of the rights to the components in the monkey image above? Hmmmm…

We fully expect you to pull that one down, too.

UPDATE: It has been pointed out that the Monkey image is courtesy of Jenny’s friend rchrisreeder. Jenny’s contribution to the narrative comes in the form of a Badger (embedded from Jenny’s Flickr account). Again, Jenny, do you have the rights to use that poster, or image of that badger? Doubtful.

Madison protests

UPDATE II: The photographer has Flickr mailed us directly:

On 24 Feb 11, 5.53PM PST jenny s. wren said:

I would like to correct a few misconceptions.

…here’s my problem. My photo was used without my permission. I have had photos used a few times but not often. As you may notice, most of my photos are of knitting or snow.I would actually not have had this problem had I just been asked for my photo to be used. It’s primarily common courtesy.

FYI- – Mr. Badger was obtained from a site that expressly gave permission for the image to be downloaded. I did not hotlink the image. Mr. Monkey, as you are already aware, was not my image nor is or has he ever been shown anywhere in my photostream. Additionally, I have never had contact with user rchrisreeder until today.

To reiterate, it would not have been difficult to merely contact me and ask permission. Flickr is NOT a warehouse of public domain images, contrary to what many people think. Using my images without my permission is actually stealing. As you have reminded me about embedding code being available, I have turned off that option for the time being.

It’s not stealing. We used the publicly available code that the photographer has now disabled. We have not attempted to re-post or ‘hotlink’ the image for use in the original post. We have, however, re-posted a screen capture of the original use, to show what we are being falsely accused of stealing. (pictured below)

jenny image

We would really appreciate it if you would cease characterizing our use of a publicly available embed code as stealing. Further we ask that you apologize for this unwarranted abuse.

As a last request, I would like to ask that you remove my personal email from your blogpost. I see no reason for including this information other than malice.

Thank you for your time.

Just to review, you accuse us of theft, subject us and our readers to vulgar images, accuse us of theft AGAIN, and now you are accusing us of malice?

Just to show that we are not mean spirited, and because you have asked, your email will be removed from the post. We assume that you will be as generous in spirit with your forthcoming apology.

While you are at it, please consider restoring your image. It is newsworthy for the reasons outlined in the original post.


Jon David Kahn “American Heart”