But being edgy and cool doesn't mean you get to rip people off. The Ellen Degeneres Show is also cool and edgy and hip and the host comes dancing out to music every day; it's actually quite entertaining. The problem is that part of the program involved music they didn't have rights to use. In 1,000 different cases.
Maybe they thought they were exempt because they were having fun. Or maybe they thought they were doing the artists a favor and giving them free publicity.
Unfortunately, The Ellen Degeneres Show tried to be fun and edgy when asked about the copyright infringement too, saying they didn't "roll that way" regarding why they used unlicensed music, leading to this bit of tort hilarity in the lawsuit (bold mine): "As sophisticated consumers of music, Defendants knew full well that, regardless of the way they rolled, under the Copyright Act, and under state law for the pre-1972 recordings, they needed a license to use the sound recordings lawfully."
Scientists love to promote science. As an outsider in science and science media, Science 2.0 was welcomed with open arms by everyone except corporate media people and their paid trolls. But artists have apparently been bristling a little bit because of the images used by "I F*cking Love Science" and one of them finally had enough.
Alex Wild, entomologist and photographer who writes for Scientific American's blog network, did something likely painful - calling out the owner of a fun science site with 5 million followers, adored by almost everyone. Because it seems Elise Andrews is using work from people, including Alex, without permission - or even credit.
Well, we have raised an entitlement generation, maybe people don't "roll that way" and think if it is available on the Internet, it is all available under Fair Use. But one thing has not changed; scientists will turn on you fast if they think you are cheating people.
And, as Wild notes, Andrew is building a TV show on that success, though "Most of the material on I F*cking Love Science is pirated."
One of the examples is "Never Data An Astronaut". Wild notes: "Andrew has taken another t-shirt designer’s work, stripped it of attribution, and is using it to drive traffic on the IFLS page where it helps sell her own t-shirts. That’s cheeky."
Ellen settled two weeks after the lawsuit but she had a successful show for 6 years by then. It can torpedo something that has not gotten off the ground. The claim by Ellen's lawyers that they believed they had an implied license because they hadn't been sued in the past was silly. So don't hire Ellen's lawyers, Elise
(She won't need to - scientists are also really forgiving if you issue a mea culpa and fix the problem - so do it).
Facebook’s “I F*cking Love Science” does not f*cking love artists By Alex Wild, Scientific American blog network