Monday, May 29, 2023

US Post Office Sued for Copyright Infringement…Again!

Original on Left; Davidson's on right.

Original on Left; Davidson’s on right.

Learn from your mistakes. Or, as Bruce Lee once said, “Mistakes are always forgivable, if one has the courage to admit them.”

I guess the US Post Office isn’t much into martial arts or Eastern philosophy. Nope, they’re more into wasting taxpayer money.

Remember this past September when the Court of Federal Claims ordered the US Post Office to pay artist Frank Gaylord over $685,000, because they had used Gaylord’s sculpture in a stamp without permission or compensation? Well, it’s Groundhog Day!

Sculptor Robert Davidson has filed suit for copyright infringement against the US Post Office in U.S. Federal Court, alleging that the Post Office used his version of the Statue of Liberty for a stamp that it released in 2011.

According to Forbes Magazine, one of the big hiccups in this new lawsuit is a curious screw-up.

Firstly … the fact that the USPS made a mistake when it originally selected [Davidson’s] image for its stamp in 2009. It sourced the picture from an online photography resource without realizing that it wasn’t the original [Statute of Liberty, which is in the public domain].

The lawsuit focuses on clearly different features on Davidson’s version, such as its softer silhouette and fuller chin that distinguish it from the true Lady Liberty.

Forbes also notes that a government employee (insert joke here) went on record stating that they would have used Davidson’s version even if they had known they had picked the wrong Lady Liberty. I promise you this is not a story in The Onion, but a clear example that incompetence is held in high regard over at the good ol’ US Post Office.

We’ll have more as this unravels. Meanwhile, rest assured your packages are being kicked around and delivered to the wrong location, and also knowing that your tax payer dollars are being used to pay attorney’s fees, courts costs, and settlement claims.

You can view the original and Davidson’s version here.


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