The critically acclaimed War Is Beautiful: The New York Times Pictorial Guide to the Glamour of Armed Conflict examines the ways in which the newspaper happily propagated the Bush Administration's lies about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq that resulted in a senseless war that hurt millions of people and immensely enriched Halliburton, Blackwater, the Carlyle Group and other companies with close ties to the Bush and the Cheney families.
As Ben Collins of the Daily Beast writes, "The book makes an artful, journalistic point: Photography on the front page of the paper of record depicted the conflict in rosy, gorgeous, cinematic ways, like the first scene in Apocalypse Now." And the book's author, David Shields bought the rights to use all the photos in the book. Why then, is the The New York Times suing the publisher for $(removed),000? Because the inside back cover of the book is decorated with 64 thumbnail photos from the front pages of the NYT.
“We didn’t expect we’d have a First Amendment fight,” Daniel Power, owner of Powerhouse Books told The Daily Beast. “Plus, we licensed the damn images and compensated these photographers for their work.”
Now, the paper contends, they’re just trying to collect an invoice for $(removed),000, even though this is almost definitively a textbook case of fair use. Thumbnails of copyrighted materials were protected speech, dating back to a very specific case just like this one about Grateful Dead posters ten years ago.
“Licensing content is not ‘quelling speech,’” said Rhoades Ha. “We licensed all of the photos within the book to Powerhouse (with the exception of the 64 Pages Ones), which allowed them to freely express their opinions on our war photography. (The Daily Beast uses the same licensing agency [PARS] we do.)”