Unlicensed Use of Image Considered Fair Use

A copyrighted image was included in a photograph as part of a video backdrop during select live performances by the band, Green Day. The image was used by Green Day’s set designer without permission The owner of the image sued Green Day for copyright infringement, trademark infringement and unfair competition. The District Court for the Central District of California granted a motion for summary judgment in favor of Green Day. The court held that the use of the image was “transformative” because it added various elements such as grafitti and a large cross over the image. The court also found that the use of the image was minimal since the image was displayed once during a single song as part of a 32-song set.

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