Madonna likes to claim she is the queen of reinvention and everything she releases contains new, fresh items she has come up with, which is a complete and utter lie. The songs Madonna stole from me for 2015's "Rebel Heart" CD have been registered with the Library of Congress for approximately 10-years and the CD cover she ripped off from Charlotte Church is from 2005. There's nothing new or inventive about Madonna. From the very first song she releases, it has all been other people's preexisting copyrighted works she stole. Madonna is the entertainment industry's Madoff.
Charlotte Church 2005:
Madonna is being slammed all over the internet for stealing preexisting photos from artist Danny Quirk for 2015's "Rebel Heart." When I did a search of my Twitter username online, listings for the Danny Quirk infringement also came up, so I decided to check it out. Quirk complained to her publicist Liz Rosenberg, who has a penchant for telling outright lies on her behalf, but nothing was done about it. Madonna continues to engage in copyright infringement. Some have brought up the "Fair Use" doctrine of the Copyright Act but are misapplying it in a severe manner.
"Fair Use" is the for purpose of teachers, schools, journalists, bloggers and the general public to "discuss" and critique items deemed "current events" without fear of Copyright Infringement. You cannot hack people's computers, copy the data and then use it, as that constitutes criminal copyright infringement, theft of trade secrets, Computer Abuse, Fraud, Conversion, Racketeering and money laundering, all very serious felonies,, both domestically and internationally.
You cannot steal someone's album cover or art work, already in the public domain (or unreleased) and use it for your own publicity photos and or album pictures, as that constitutes copyright infringement, via the illegal commercial use of other people's property. Madonna, the labels she has recorded for and their respective lawyers all know this, but Madonna is a crazy, greedy Kleptomaniac with no respect of regard for other people's rights and property.
Quirk's lawyer claims, clearly in what came from Madonna's corrupt, bribe issuing lawyer, that his work is "transformative" so they are allowed to steal it, which is a load of crap. Copyright Law and the Berne Convention make no provisions for the illegal COMMERCIAL usage of another person's works. Madonna has been illegally using Quirk's photos for her album and on tour, which clearly falls under COMMERCIAL USE. She is criminally making money from Quirk's work and collecting credit for the stolen items as well, which is foul, pathetic and vile.
On the right are pictures of Danny Quirk's PREEXISTING artwork. In the left are pictures of Madonna's subsequent illegal rip off of his works, forbidden under domestic and international Copyright Law and the Berne Convention. Photos have been redacted by the Judiciary Report for nudity.
Madonna, the Kabbalah Center and its members (both famous and non-famous) insanely seem to think pretending they do not know the original source of the stolen copyrights is a legal or ethical excuse or defense. At the end of the day, you have no business using or putting your name on something you did not author, citing "Fair Use" where it does not apply. You are a foul, disgraceful, disgusting bunch of criminals with no morals or decency, behaving like you were raised in barns and caves by animals and savages. End of story.
Said songwriter in Kabbalah also threw it in my face that Madonna bribes someone at the Copyright Office to backdate her infringing rip offs of stolen copyrighted works, which all constitute a series of terrible financial crimes that are felonies (not to mention, backdating is easily unraveled in court due to a number of chronological and digital factors that cannot be changed, thus exposing the fraud).
It's disgusting that Madonna has corrupted and disgraced an entity, the Copyright Office, connected to the U.S. Congress and bearing its name. World history will not record it well. All you writers submitting works to the Copyright Office, beware. Madonna will steal your copyrights. It's disgraceful that Madonna has criminally stolen her way into history. However, it is all going to fall apart with an astonishing series of revocations and a reversal of fortune (for further reference see: Madoff).
Did Madonna Really Steal Artwork For Her ‘Rebel Heart’ Tour?
He begins, “Back in January, it came to my attention that Madonna’s social media team had been using a series of 3 images in a campaign on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram with her head superimposed on my paintings to promote her new album, “Rebel Heart”. Tsk, tsk! Meanwhile, the 18-year-old daughter of the ‘Rebel Heart’ hit-maker was in the front row at mommy’s concert with a group of her friends when she was snapped opening a chilled can of beer and chugging it. Quite the risk taker indeed.
Hypocrites: Taylor Swift and Madonna Are Shamelessly Stealing Artwork of Unknown Artists
You can check out Ally's open letter to Taylor at the bottom of the article. Now, Madonna: She ripped off an artist called Danny Quirk by apparently using MS Paint to paste her face on one of his pieces, and did a similar thing to Jonas Jödicke, except that face-pasting was done with a tad more taste.
Last year, when someone stole her stuff, Madonna said that music piracy and stealing art is "artistic rape" and "a form of terrorism." Taylor on the other hand, was very vocal about how artists need to be paid and recognized. She penned an open letter to Apple Music about the whole matter, and pulled her catalog from Spotify.
And while it's obvious that there's a very strong chance that neither Madonna nor Taylor personally stole the stuff, and that it was their employees who fucked up, the whole thing makes the two ladies look quite hypocritical.
Artist Annoyed At Madonna Using His Work With No Credit Under ‘Fair Use’
Danny claims that an artist called BessNYC4 [NSFW] pasted a photo of Maddona’s face on his drawing and that they were used in her social media. Any many young artists, Danny was first very happy for the fact that his art was so widely exposed. But then he realized that he was not getting any credit for his illustrations. Danny claims that he tried contacting Maddona’s agent and got no response.
Danny got even angrier when he discovered that those illustrations were also used in Madonna’s shows. Being annoyed he posted about it until his lawyer told him to take the post down as BessNYC4’s work was protected under the Fair Use doctrine for being transformative enough. Danny got annoyed enough that he shared his frustration on his page which got thousands of likes, shares and comments. I am attaching his letter after the jump.
First and foremost … I just want to deliver an open, and honest “F**K YOU” to the “Fair Use Act”, and an ACTUAL “what the F*K!?!?” to those it protects. Almost a year ago to date (Jan 2015) I awoke to a barrage of texts stating my work was popping up on Madonna’s FB, IG, and Twitter, with tens of thousands of likes, shares, comments, etc. ! ! At first, I thought … “WHOAH! / COOL!“ but shortly there after, it sunk in. I contacted her agent, and received absolutely no response. In the meantime, I found out digital collage artist BessNYC4 was the one who ‘made’ the work, sending it to her, merging MY ART with her head, and reaping all the benefits.. Things petered out, and I more or less forgot about it; u n t i l … early Oct 2015. I found out (for all intents and purposes) my art was used in her concerts, despite my attempts at getting proper credit acknowledgment, etc. I made a post to build momentum / got a lawyer, and was hoping for justice. My lawyer said “PULL THE POST!” and it was determined the work was ‘transformative’ under the “Fair Use Act”, which protected them / her and the coinciding articles (which came from momentum of the post covering the ordeal) made ME out to be the bad guy. WHY? Anyone with eyes can see… anyhow, this is a rant how WE ARTISTS are taken advantage of, and how laws protect everyone except for who they should, as you can see in THREE of my pieces … anyhow, I’m not thrilled. Pass along if y’all agree (maybe we can build momentum?)
Not being a copyright lawyer myself, I have no idea if the work is transformative or not, Danny posted some sample and you can take a look yourself. This is one of Maddona’s instagram posts:
Why is it OK for celebrities to use other people’s art for commercial purposes without permission?
September 30, 2015 - Time and time again we hear about singers and other types of celebrities getting sued over their use of other people’s art without permission or credit, and in many cases those pieces are used for commercial purposes. The latest allegation comes from artist Danny Quirk, whose art was taken without permission by none other than Madonna.
Back in January, it came to my attention that Madonna’s social media team had been using a series of 3 of images in a campaign on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram with her head superimposed on my paintings to promote her new album “Rebel Heart”. I didn’t want to make a big stink about things just because it was a high profile name, but despite my messages / emails to Liz Rosenburg (her agent) commenting on the said social media posts, and the MANY posts of people defending the work / calling her out on it, the messages were overlooked and ignored, and the work was never credited.
Doing the math, off of Instagram, the images got a collected 145,000 + likes, on Facebook, some 77,000+ likes, and Twitter, about 1,000+reposts. That’s some serious exposure that was leeched from me and my art, and used to promote her agenda.
Since the Rebel Heart tour kicked off, I found out the art is being used on her tour from a friend who recognized the work during the show. I’ve seen at least 4 YouTube videos that show it, as it’s part of a loop played during her song “Rebel Heart”. Granted it’s a SMALL part of the show, but I was never A.) asked, and B.) COMPLETELY ignored when I called her staff / team out on improper use of my creative property.
That’s awful coming from an artist worth like $800 million. The photoshop job is also awful, but let’s not get sidetracked here. Considering that singers know what is like to have their work used without permission, one would think they would relate and not pull this kind of antics, but it’s easy for them to claim the things they “borrow” as public domain.
The worst part is that many relatively unknown artists don’t fight back because they don’t have the means to hire a lawyer, and because many times the “your art is not copyrighted, so it’s public domain” phrase comes up into the conversation, making the original artists have doubts about their chances of winning a case against people or companies using and even selling their art.
To make matters worse, this is something that happens quite a often. After a quick Google search I came up with the following results:
Back in 2013 Lil’ Kim took a photograph of a makeup artist in zombie makeup (it was a photograph of the actual artist), slapped her logo on it, used it for her social media accounts, and even used the picture as album art. All of that without giving credit to the makeup artist.
In 2014 visual artist Maya Hayuk (left) sued Sara Bareilles and her record company for the use of her mural “Chem Trails NYC” as a backdrop for numerous promotional pictures and videos of the pop star without Hayuk’s knowledge or permission. They were used to promote Bareilles’ music and concert tour.
Also last year, the rapper known as Mase was sued for using a photograph from model Stephanie Delgado’s Instagram as artwork without her permission to promote his single, “Why Can’t We.”
Joseph Tierney, a street artist who goes by the name Rime, sued Italian fashion firm Moschino and designer Jeremy Scott for copyright infringement and misappropriation after they allegedly used his graffiti art on their expensive outfits, one of which was worn by singer Katy Perry at a high-profile event in New York City. Katy Perry was apparently paid to wear said dress.
Freelance photographer Giordano Cipriani filed the lawsuit against Kendrick Lamar for the use of his photo of a mother breastfeeding two children, which he shot in 2011 on a trip to Africa. Lamar used it as the artwork for his single, “The Blacker the Berry.”
Fine art photographer Laura Ferreira from Trinidad and Tobago found out that one of her photos of a woman in a carnival costume was being used by rapper T.I. to promote a big party that he was throwing. When he was called out on it he threw a tantrum, insulted the photographer, and still used giant-size versions of the artwork on the walls on his party.
Rapper “The Game” is being sued by rapper and designer Ariza Obey over the artwork for “Ryda,” his single with Dej Loaf. The Game allegedly took this photograph and repurposed the artwork in a brown tone.
And as a change of pace, the time the so called “artist” known as Richard Prince used other people’s Instagram photo posts in an exhibition without their permission, and then sold the prints for $90,000 a piece.
I never understood why Instagram let him off without a fight, but I guess it comes down to a phrase I read some time ago; “If you aren’t paying for service you’re not the customer, you’re the product.”
In general it would be nice and wise if celebrities and companies stopped stealing artwork for commercial uses. I’m almost certain that it’s pretty infuriating to the original artists to have their pieces get so much recognition under other people’s name and without a single mention, so at least ask beforehand.
Stop stealing other people’s work and passing it as your own.
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