Mercedes-Benz sues street artists for graffitiSeptember 16, 2019
After Mercedes-Benz posted on the official Instagram photos of the G 500 SUV against the backdrop of the eastern market of Detroit, the manufacturer was contacted by the artists who painted its walls and demanded compensation.
The story began with Daniel Bombardier, Max Gramaho, James Lewis and Jeff Soto seeing their graffiti on the official instagram of the Mercedes-Benz brand: in the advertising pictures, the brand new SUV G 500 drove along the eastern Detroit market, whose walls were painted by street artists. They decided that they were entitled to compensation for the use of the drawings for advertising purposes, and wrote about it to Mercedes-Benz. A spokeswoman for the automaker replied that artists’ outraged posts were removed from Instagram following their complaint as a courtesy, but they have no reason to claim compensation for copyrights.
The artists hired a lawyer and continued, according to Mercedes-Benz lawyers, to “threaten” the manufacturer, so a lawsuit was brought against them. It states that the brand had the right to use the pictures without the consent of the graffiti artists, since they primarily depict a car, and the walls of the building with drawings serve only as a background. According to the spokeswoman, the threats of artists do not concern copyright – they just tried to capitalize on this by taking advantage of the situation. The accused’s lawyer told reporters that the artists were “desperate” and did not expect lawsuits against them, especially from such a giant as Mercedes-Benz.
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