Rep. Lamar Smith, Copyright Violator

by Nathaniel Botwinick

It seems Rep. Lamar Smith, the author of the terrible “Stop Online Piracy Act,” is himself a copyright violator. His bill, which would destroy the Internet in an attempt to end online piracy, would hilariously lead to the shutdown of his own website. At Vice.com, they’ve discovered that the background image on his website was stolen:

I managed to track that picture back to DJ Schulte, the photographer who took it.

And whaddya know? Looks like someone forgot to credit him.

I contacted DJ, to find out if Lamar had asked permission to use the image and he told me that he had no record of Lamar, or anyone from his organization, requesting permission to use it: “I switched my images from traditional copyright protection to be protected under the Creative Commons license a few years ago, which simply states that they can use my images as long as they attribute the image to me and do not use it for commercial purposes.

“I do not see anywhere on the screen capture that you have provided that the image was attributed to the source (me). So my conclusion would be that Lamar Smith’s organization did improperly use my image. So according to the SOPA bill, should it pass, maybe I could petition the court to take action against www.texansforlamarsmith.com.”

Perhaps Congressman Smith will reconsider the ramifications of his bill. Either way, let’s hope the bill is defeated.

The rest of the article here.