The photographer who won the lawsuit against the Andy Warhol Foundation for copyright infringement is raising money to cover the excessive costs of the case. Photographer Lynn Goldsmith finally won the United States Supreme Court battle earlier this year. However, the triumph came at a steep financial price.
Goldsmith spent seven years battling against Andy Warhol’s unauthorized use of her famous portrait of Prince. The total costs of defending her intellectual rights added up to over $2.5 million. She reportedly had to sell her house to help cover the fees.
The most staggering part of this is that Goldsmith did not even initiate the legal proceedings. The legal battle was initiated by Warhol’s estate, which sued Goldsmith in a “preemptive strike.”
Go Fund Me
In response to the financial toll, Goldsmith launched a GoFundMe campaign to recoup some legal expenses. Having raised over $70,000 of her $750,000 goal, she emphasizes the importance of standing up against legal bullying. Goldsmith highlights the need for collective support from the artistic community.
Goldsmith calls on the 150,000 photographers in the United States to contribute $10 each to fund the legal battle. She stresses the importance of protecting artists’ rights. She urges individuals to use their voices to advocate for copyright laws to safeguard creators.
Who makes these decisions?
Sometimes you read a piece of news that just makes you stop. You scratch your head and think you must live in Opposite Land. This is one of those stories that just defies belief. Surely Goldsmith cannot be liable to cover all the court costs when she won the case and didn’t even start the battle?
There’s a strange logic there somewhere, and it is somewhat depressing that, as artists, we simply cannot win. This will deter artists from seeking restitution in similar cases. There will be fears that high court fees will likely make them bankrupt even if they win. The only real winners in the end are the lawyers.