Gigi Hadid thinks she can use paparazzi photos because she contributes to them “with her smile and outfit”

Jun 25, 2019

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

Gigi Hadid thinks she can use paparazzi photos because she contributes to them “with her smile and outfit”

Jun 25, 2019

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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It was more than once that Gigi Hadid was sued for using a photo of herself without permission or crediting the photographer. The famous model’s legal team claims that she’s totally entitled to it. They say that her using a paparazzi photo of herself constitutes fair use because she contributed to the photo with her smile and outfit.

In January this year, an agency Xclusive-Lee filed a copyright infringement lawsuit against Hadid for posting one of its images to her Instagram. Just like she did with Peter Cepeda’s image, she posted the photo without photographer’s or his agency’s permission, and without credits. However, it seems that Hadid’s lawyers are trying to rewrite copyright law in an attempt to dismiss the lawsuit.

The model’s legal team issued a memorandum which claims that Hadid wasn’t guilty of copyright infringement. They claim that she  “posed for the camera and thus herself contributed many of the elements that the copyright law seeks to protect.” According to the memorandum, she was the one who creative directed the photo, not the photographer. She cropped the image before posting, and her legal team claims that it’s her “contribution” to the photo. Apparently, by cropping someone else’s photo, she is “focusing her followers on her pose and smile, not the photographer’s composition.”

According to The Verge, the problematic photo has been removed from Hadid’s Instagram. But it’s described as a paparazzi photo of her in the streets of New York City, standing and smiling in a denim outfit.

As we all know, photographers typically have full copyright the moment they press the shutter. When you photograph someone in public, you don’t even need a model release. Of course, there are cases of “fair use” when someone can use your image without prior permission. One of them is using photo non-commercially. Hadid’s legal team is apparently trying to play on this card, claiming that she “merely reposted the photograph to her Instagram page and made no effort to commercially exploit it.” They add that it “reflected a personal purpose different than the photographer’s purpose in taking the photograph, which was to commercially exploit Ms. Hadid’s popularity.”

Even if Hadid’s legal team is claiming “fair use,” I believe that she was still supposed to credit the photographer. Also, this isn’t the first case that celebrities get sued for using photos without permission. As I mentioned, it’s not even the first time for Hadid. However, this is the first time I hear an argument that the celebrity “creative directed” a paparazzi photo. Or that they contributed to it by cropping it so a smile and an outfit are in focus. I honestly think both arguments are ridiculous, and I hope that the court will think the same. Because if it doesn’t, this could have serious implications for photographers, whether they’re paparazzi or not.

[via The Vergecover image credits (right): The Door]

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Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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24 responses to “Gigi Hadid thinks she can use paparazzi photos because she contributes to them “with her smile and outfit””

  1. Chris Avatar
    Chris

    How difficult is it for her to ask (and possibly pay) a friend with a fancy camera to take photos of her walking around?

  2. Chuck Diesel Avatar
    Chuck Diesel

    She’s famous because we take pictures of her. We can make her irrelevant by not.

    1. Jennifer Moore Avatar
      Jennifer Moore

      No, she actually has REAL photographers that make her famous.
      You know, the one’s where she actually knows about the photos they are taking and she gets paid for it.
      The paparazzi are just a bunch of free loaders who cant find real jobs so they follow celebrities around taking FREE shots and then turn around and sell them for a profit.

      Its totally despicable.

      She owes you nothing for her fame.

  3. ZorroRules Avatar
    ZorroRules

    I kind of see her point, she is saying she contributed to the photo when it was taken, which, to the extent that she did would have made it better or worse. Nobody asked her permission to use her likeness in a photo, so why should she have to ask to use her own image taken basically without her permission. Seems to me such pictures are something both the victim and perpetrator both own. Who “owns” a child from rape, seems the rapist owes damages and the rapee should get some money out of it, and then there’s the kid. So, we have the rapper, rapee, and the kid i.e. photo. Just because she smiled during the rape does not mean she consented, and just because the rapist brahged about it, i.e. published the picture does not mean he should benefit from it. I think people should have a right to use images made of them by others.

    1. Arthur_P_Dent Avatar
      Arthur_P_Dent

      Worst. Analogy. Ever.

    2. Pixyst Avatar
      Pixyst

      WHAAAT???

  4. Amanda Vieira Avatar
    Amanda Vieira

    I despise paparazzi, so I’m totally on her side

  5. Anthony Woodruffe Avatar
    Anthony Woodruffe

    As long as she uses them for editorial everything is fine. The person who took the photo, may have a press pass. That does not give them permission to sell a picture of someone they photographed in public. They need a model release because it’s capital gain.

    1. Jeff Hayward Avatar
      Jeff Hayward

      Anthony Woodruffe not true.

    2. Jeff Hayward Avatar
      Jeff Hayward

      Anthony Woodruffe if a photog needed a model release to sell a photo to a publication, the paparazzi wouldn’t exist in the first place. I’m not a huge fan of people chasing celebs to make money, but the law is that the photographer holds the copyright, not the subject.

    3. Anthony Woodruffe Avatar
      Anthony Woodruffe

      Jeff the law states you cannot use an image of an identifiable person for capital gain. The ignorance of the change in privacy laws post 05.25.18 is quite noticeable. Not with you mind
      You’re right the photog owns the copyright .
      Her lawyers should contact publications and demand the same fee the paparazzi received.

    4. Arthur_P_Dent Avatar
      Arthur_P_Dent

      They don’t need a model release if they’re using the photo for editorial purposes.

  6. Jolyon Ralph Avatar
    Jolyon Ralph

    I’m on her side too.

  7. cameradoll Avatar
    cameradoll

    I find it completely unacceptable that she removed the credit from the image and gave no credit or tag to the photographer. She has done this before. I can’t help feel this would have gone a different way if she had simply respected the photographer.

  8. Blake Barnhill Avatar
    Blake Barnhill

    dumb bimbo

  9. Woolpuppy Avatar
    Woolpuppy

    I’m on her side. The paparazzi has a history of collecting their information and photos using predatory methods. I’m all for someone pushing back on them for once.

  10. Jennifer Moore Avatar
    Jennifer Moore

    Its a picture of HER. They didnt ask permission to take it why should she have to get permission to share it.
    These laws need to change and maybe then these so called photographers would stop being such buttholes.

  11. S. James Avatar
    S. James

    It’s a picture of her. Eff the paparazzi, why shouldn’t she be able to use a photo taken of her. This is BS

  12. suruha Avatar
    suruha

    I feel she wouldn’t have the photo if not for the photographer. His/her snapping the photo brought it about, even with her ‘direction’. It’s his/her photo!
    Photographers should hold the copyrights! She should have to pay or give credit, at least.

  13. S.L. Avatar
    S.L.

    Fk the paparazzi… its an image of her without her consent

  14. David Avatar
    David

    Let’s ask Alec Baldwin, he is a big paparazzi fan, as you well know.

  15. cycleguy55 Avatar
    cycleguy55

    As is so often the case, most of the comments are posted by people with little to no knowledge of copyright law and photographs. The law and numerous judgments have established clear precedent that copyright in photographs of celebrities taken in public belong to the photographer. Anyone wishing to use such images for commercial purposes must license the image(s) from the copyright holder. That includes Gigi Hadid using it to promote herself – even if she did ‘pose’ for the photograph, direct the photographer in some way, and/or crop the image.

    The issue of whether we like paparazzi and what they do is totally unrelated to copyright law and, as such, should be kept separate.

  16. Mexoplex Avatar
    Mexoplex

    how do you take a picture of someone without necessarily their consent and get mad that she wants to use it? She doesnt have rights to her OWN image?
    I’m going to start taking pictures of rich people and then charge them for their picture. See how that goes over. smh

  17. De Ha Avatar
    De Ha

    Let me get this straight;
    the Papparazi violated her right and stole images of her against her will, she stole those photos back for her personal use, and now the tabloids are trying to say she doesn’t own her own image?