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McMansion Hell is being sued by Zillow!

As if there isn't enough anxiety in the world, McMansion Hell is being sued by Zillow!

The silver lining, IMO, is the enormous outpouring of support for her that I've seen on Twitter and elsewhere on SoMe. 


OMG I mean "Bro do you even quoin??" is one of the best things I've ever heard.

Let's hope she gets a fair use ruling and all continues well!

 
Jun 26, 17 9:38 pm

3 Featured Comments

All 44 Comments

Plot twist: McMansion Hell is marketing director for Zillow and they’re going to use the free outrage/publicity to launch a new range of modernist housing...


Jun 26, 17 9:48 pm

God forbid some blogger poke fun at the real estate industry for their shitty offerings. (I'm sure those 90 whole hours of instruction from an online diploma mill totally justifies that 6% commission, though.)

Jun 26, 17 10:02 pm
fictional\_/Christopher

easy fix for her.  the lawsuit is essentially about copyrights and content.  since she has a lot of followers she could simply request others to go out and take photos for her.  she would simply review zillow and send an email out to fans and they take photos etc...

Jun 26, 17 10:08 pm

The problem with this is 1. no interior photos and 2. the *staging* of the RE photos is a huge part of the fun.

fictional\_/Christopher

yeah didn't think about the interior bit, other than you could call up the realtor and ask to see the place, but when you start taking photos they might wonder.

fictional\_/Christopher

i also wonder, if you mirror the image, change some colors, is modified enough to not be an issue?

crazy thing is that Zillow doesn't own the copyright on the photos either. They repost from MLS and realtor's websites (presumably with permission). Lots o bluster I say.

chickaletta

Troy, I was just coming here to say the same thing. And not to mention that it is someone's house they are taking pictures of, and someone's home design and construction as well.

They were put up to it by home design television shows for fear that it would decrease ratings and create design awareness.

Jun 26, 17 10:10 pm
fictional\_/Christopher

they were def. put up to it.

thank you internet, thank you

Jun 26, 17 10:24 pm

1) I want a 6% fee/commission.

2) Satire is fair use. 

3) All McMansions should be ripped apart.

Jun 26, 17 10:31 pm

McMansion Nuggets

fictional\_/Christopher

maybe archinect knows some people

pinterest

Jun 26, 17 10:44 pm

Reputable, are they ok to use on wikipedia?

fictional\_/Christopher

wayback machine robot.txt

Jun 27, 17 12:04 am

LOL. Welcome to the corporate world, better give them credit.

Jun 27, 17 10:25 am
z6jbishop

I listened to a podcast on 99% invisible with this girl she is super annoying. Sure those particular houses aren't visually pleasing but form isn't the goal, its simply function. They market the floor plan not the roof plan, simple shit.

Jun 27, 17 11:36 am
SneakyPete

What the fuck are you talking about?

tduds

Found the Zillow marketing intern.

z6jbishop

Gentlemen please relax just listen to this girl and judge for yourself. Is she actually doing anything productive? Or did she find a weird niche in starbucks hipster architects blog list?

SneakyPete

"just listen to this girl and judge" Sounds like you need a good hard look in the mirror.

chigurh

Like any potential mc mansion home-buyer is going to be deterred by those images...People in the market for those home have their heads so far up their asses this kind of stuff wouldn't even be on their radar.  

Jun 27, 17 1:24 pm

If I could figure out how to embed Tweets here on Archinect, chigurh, I'd post the Tweet someone sent to Kate of a picture from his FB feed of his former high school friend's McMansion with the caption "A year ago I would have felt envious of this guy's house, now I just laugh!" McMansion Hell is teaching normal people more about good design than any Ivy League MArch has in the history of the profession LOL.

jla-x

I watched a doc on Netflix "Nobody Speak" on big money trying to squash free speech via lawsuits, etc...this seems like a similar scenario. 

Jun 27, 17 3:12 pm
jla-x

the homes are "public figures" since they have been published on an public open website.  Its not like she took the pics from the MLS or a private server.  She is commenting on a published content.  Same as me commenting on a published article and using quotes from that article to support my crit, or reviewing a Product online and using images of that product and its advertisement in that review.  

Jun 27, 17 3:20 pm
jla-x

The outcome of this lawsuit may gave some really far reaching implications on free speech. Scary.

Surely freedom of panorama laws are ok in the US? As an aside but could be important in a legal case it is quite obvious the images were used for satirical purpose and therefor ‘fair use’? Unless the plaintiffs are copyright originators/Zillow small print takes ownership in which case alarm bells should have rung for the photographers, and if that small print did obtain ownership from the copyright originator then unless it was absolutely clarified and obvious defence has a case to run with. 

Here in the UK the tories have done their worst to get rid of legal aid and fair legal representation, I hope this is only an aspiration and not a precedent from the US.

Featured Comment

A cease and desist letter delivered by email?

LOL

Unless you are served, there's nothing to talk about. Parody is fair use. If she's not making money off the site it's not commercial appropriation. 

Materially changing the images is a well worn path that Richard Prince has been down several times. The difference is he made a fortune selling the work. In fact that's why he was sued. And he still won.

Jun 27, 17 3:57 pm

@Miles this is the one point I have wondered about... Her official statement states "this blog(...) has been my livelihood..."

Though even Zillow's response to her news making, doesn't give impression that is why they care...only concern is image use not the blog...

ThatBrickWall

^ exactly. But everyone loves their liberal outrage these days. Image copyright and fair use should be taught in schools. 

Liberal does not mean the same things in all political paradigms, but I totally agree that copyright and IP should be taught in comprehensive education.

fictional\_/Christopher

what would the Donald do? he'd countersue for something, surely she can sue them for not having a sense of humor?

Jun 27, 17 6:48 pm
Featured Comment

These were apparently plastered all over Zillow's headquarters here in Seattle today.

(via Mike Rosenberg / Seattle Times)

Jun 27, 17 9:48 pm
ThatBrickWall

You guys and your outrage! Everyone in this profession just loves to hate huh? No one takes the time to actually understand the issue. The topic is not what is an issue here. It is a licensing issue. Zillow, and the real estate agents licensed those images from the photographers who own the rights to them.  

She did not license the images and she is profiting from that. 22k a year she says. She also says she is planning to publish a book in which case she would license the images, why should she not do this with a blog but would with a book? Also the demand letter does not ask her to take down the blog, just images sourced from the Zillow website. She is courting your outrage by over reacting. She is another scab on society making money off hate. This time its your hate for McMansions. 

Lets look at this from the photographer perspective and compare it your architectural work with a client.

Say you create drawings or photographs, and give them to your client to sell / market the project. You license them for that use. But now the printer really liked that image and they use it all over their marketing material. Would you want your client to tell the printer to stop! Hell yes you would. If they want a fancy image for their use they can pay for it or create it themselves just like everyone else. You would expect your client to at least attempt to deal with the issue wouldn't you? Zillow is basically covering their ass. They could be sued by the photographers and real estate professionals they licensed those images from. 

There is nothing stopping here from taking photos herself, she can make all the commentary she wants, but she cannot profit off your work, without licensing the work. 

ALSO DONNA: SHE IS NOT BEING SUED!  They just demanded that the licensed images be taken down. But all of your outrage feels good right?

 Long live the haters should just be the motto of this pathetic profession. Who wants to start a blog dropping comments like this on various architects current work.... I'm going to call it DRB HELL and "fair use" all of the renderings off your websites

Jun 28, 17 5:39 pm

Yes, you're right that she's not being sued. And she has been so upfront about exactly what her situation is that I felt like I should have clarified that in my comments here yesterday, but I got busy, then I had some wine, then I finished up some drawings, and then I forgot.

OTOH, "She is another scab on society making money off hate. " is not only self-serving hate-mongering (pot...kettle) but a really fucking shitty thing to say about someone from behind your online anonymity.

ThatBrickWall

I don't really understand how my comment can be made in anonymity and self serving at the same time. You sound a little hypocritical yourself. It's a fact she was making money off hate. Do you find her work insightful?

ThatBrickWall

OTOH your elevating this from she received a cease and desist letter to "SHE'S BEING SUED!" Is a bit self serving. Along with her choosing to take down the blog rather than just the images she stole all stoke the fire of anger and hate she is profiting from.

z6jbishop

Thank you for your sanity Brick Wall

SneakyPete

I'm curious what inspired you two to come here and start wanking each other off. Self-righteous indignation? Troll itch need scratching? Slow day at the office? Personal beef?

ThatBrickWall

What is licensed here is not the shitty design she is making commentary on its the photograph. The photographs are fairly good if of shitty subjects. if she was to be commenting on the quality of the photograph then it would be fair use / parody. but she's not. She is using someone else's work to further her own. 

Jun 28, 17 5:51 pm

You should read a bit about fair use and copyright infringement before sticking your foot too far into your mouth.

[wiki]

In May 2015, Richard Prince displayed his art gallery at the Frieze Art Fair. His gallery consisted of screenshots of Instagram users’ pictures with Prince’s commentary photoshopped below in the comments section. Not one Instagram user authorized Prince to use their pictures, but because Prince added his own commentary, the pictures were considered original artwork. One of the pieces sold for $90,000. Further, the Gagosian Gallery, where the pictures were showcased stated that "All images are subject to copyright."

fictional\_/Christopher

within Miles framework above. these photos are not objects of art, they are tools for selling real estate just like drawings can be tools for construction. ahe has made them art. the content really is not the same. so in that sense its not copy right infringement in my mind. lastly, havent the photographers already been paid?

ThatBrickWall

From your wiki link miles "On March 18, 2011, US District Judge Deborah A. Batts ruled against Prince, Gagosian Gallery, Inc., and Lawrence Gagosian. The court found that the use by Prince was not fair use (his primary defence), and Cariou's issue of liability for copyright infringement was granted in its entirety.[17] The court cited much case law including the Rogers v. Koons case of 1992.[17] On April 25, 2013, the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit reversed Judge Batts's ruling, stating that Prince's use of the photographs in 25 works was transformative and thus fair use. Five less transformative works were sent back to the lower court for review.[18] The case settled in 2014"  

So your saying you find her work transformative? As in it has changed your opinion about McMansions? Or did it just reinforce a view you already held. Would informed and educated architectural viewers find this transformative? Because that's what overturned the ruling of some but not all of the works of Prince

Prince is still in business. He recently appealed a major loss and won. McMansion Hell is obviously transformative, the very meaning is changed.

ThatBrickWall

I think your argument that the work is a transformative modification is the best conversation going here and the most reasonable. Thanks. But I have issues with that argument. Zillow is not selling houses. It is selling Advertisements. It uses these images to create a value statement about the property, and then profits from the Ad sales from the listing and Advertisements. She then takes the image and also makes a value statement about the property, though contradictory, It is still a value statement none the less. and one which she then uses to create revenue by selling adds and merchandise. There is no protection just because you are hating on something. having a different opinion about the value of the property does not entitle you to steal the images and use them for the same purpose of generating profit through ad revenue. She is profiting from hate. but the people on here tend to agree with her valuation more so they immediately decide she is right.  

SneakyPete

"So your saying you find her work transformative? As in it has changed your opinion about McMansions? Or did it just reinforce a view you already held. Would informed and educated architectural viewers find this transformative? Because that's what overturned the ruling of some but not all of the works of Prince" (SIC)


trans·form·a·tive
tran(t)sˈfôrmədiv/
adjective

  1. causing a marked change in someone or something.


'Marked change' does not equal complete change of opinion, no matter how much you want your armchair lawyering to hold up.

Pure Streisand Effect. McMansion Hell is getting so much good press out of this, and Zillow is getting bad. 

http://jezebel.com/is-zillows-...

Jun 28, 17 9:47 pm

Great link, Donna. 

"The first wrinkle is that Zillow isn’t the copyright holder of these photos."


It gets better:

"Interesting to note: Zillow has itself been the defendant in a copyright case, after they were sued by real estate photography company VHT, who claimed they didn’t have proper permissions for using 28,000 photos on Zillow’s home design subsite Zillow Digs. Initially ordered to pay $8.2 million in damages,the Chicago Tribune reported June 23 that a federal judge cut the bill down to just under $4.1 million."

fictional\_/Christopher

spin spin spin....maybe they can recoup $4.1 million by taking out McMansion Hell and the likes...are there other company's in trouble with Zillow on these matters?

fictional\_/Christopher

got it.  so the photography company discovered their photos on McMansion Hell, then learned those photos were being taken from Zillow, and instead of going after McMansion Hell (small entity) they went after Zillow because they further discovered Zillow was using their photos without proper permission, and now Zillow in a revenge plot is going after McMansion Hell because she (at McMansion Hell) kind of exposed the illegal use by Zillow by popularizing photos that would of probably remained under the radar.  I think that sums it up.  Any wagers?

Jun 28, 17 10:55 pm
JonathanLivingston

I don't think that's the case at all. Zillow licensed the images or had a terms of service for use of the images. They have an obligation to uphold that agreement.

JonathanLivingston

This is kinda hilarious though I think they are both overacting to some harmless fun.

fictional\_/Christopher

we should of made a wagered first man, you could of been a millionaire...

fictional\_/Christopher

btw...thank god for the internet


and if you google McMansions - you get for images


Jun 28, 17 11:37 pm
ThatBrickWall

The subject matter is not the issue here. It's a copyright issue. But damn does your outrage speak volumes. I suppose you would classify these McMansion owners as deplorables too right? 

Let's try this again. Set aside your hate for McMansions. Presumably everyone on this forum dislikes them. YOU as the architect license photos from a photographer to use on your business website. Blogger copies the photos and does this. And your cool with that? You would at least ask them to stop. Right? I mean the photographer you licensed the images from probably wouldn't like that, they could sue YOU if didn't at least ask them to stop. 

Just to clarify, I don't think she's wrong, just a dick. And a thief. You realize people live in these houses? That those photos are represent someone's livelyhood? Maybe she should actually practice architecture and make better things rather then just tear down. But I guess that's what they teach in architecture school these days. 

Making money off hate is the new economy. Brightbart, Fox News, Gawker, and all the other rag publishers out there are profiting the exact same way. 

Jun 29, 17 12:55 am
archietechie

Expounded above, how is it a copyright issue when it's under the Fair Use clause? Pretty sure McMansion Hell isn't profiteering from these photos.

fictional\_/Christopher

outrage? don't you think YOU are being a bit dramatic. So goto my blog and at the end you find me stating things like "use freely" etc... I wouldnt care if someone went to my website and downloaded photos and made comments - free press. welcome to the age of the internet. information is free and commenting on such information, such as photos posted on the web for free access, is freedom of speech. welcome to the world to come.

ThatBrickWall

All photos posted on the internet are not free to use. Your blog may say that but most architect websites as well as Zillow have terms of use.

fictional\_/Christopher

what if i take a screenshot of youe website? how is that different than taking a photo of space? like i am suggesting the law is behind common s3n

SneakyPete

"The subject matter is not the issue here. It's a copyright issue. But damn does your outrage speak volumes. I suppose you would classify these McMansion owners as deplorables too right?"

I really dislike it when pepe bandwagon jumpers like the same Cohen brothers movies I do.

Shut the fuck up, ThatBrickWall, you're out of your element.

fictional\_/Christopher

if you post it on the web its free game.  if someone writes an essay and I comment on it extensively qouting it as well is that copyright infringement NO.  These are not Ansel Adams photos, lugging around heavy equipment gear in the mountains and developing old school photos, these are people already getting paid for driving around and shooting quick digital photos.  they are tools of service and not art.  i know the law might be different, but the law is behind the times.  just because you have a thought does not mean that thought should be protected by others, protect your own thoughts if you are so worried about how special your thinking is.  and keep in mind your thoughts, everyone has had them, you are not special.  photos in the digital ages for the most part are just posted memories, or thoughts.  

Jun 29, 17 7:00 am
ThatBrickWall

She can and should make her own photos and continue her blog. I don't think anyone has a problem with that. You just enjoy being upset.She is profiting from that. This is great for her. This issue has everything all the right feelings for you to be outraged. It's big corporation against small student. It's high architecture against McMansions, it's liberal politics against conservative. It reinforces your beliefs so you must support it. But everything you are saying regarding copyright in digital media goes against your own work being protected in the same way.

There really isn't any copyright protection for architects. For your individual plans as intellectual property, maybe. Depends on your contractual agreements and the depth of your pockets.

fictional\_/Christopher

thatbrickwall you have a learning disability? your response is so off base to what i am writing

fictional\_/Christopher

just had a thought, free of charge for Zillow. So they have to pay out $4.1 million for illegal use of photos right?...you could hire kids (it is summer) at say $10/hr on average to drive around the state taking photos of houses inside and out.  call up the realtor, I work for Zillow, need access etc...they get little ID tags like some towns require when soliciting and drive around "making" digital photos for purposes of a real estate transaction.  at 52 weeks a year and 40 hours a week thats about 200 kids driving around the US taking photos all day.  make it an UBER model and now its even leaner.  that counsel was free.

Jun 29, 17 7:16 am

giving it away...you could have been writing apps :)

fictional\_/Christopher

app success is about timing (not the idea)....its too early in the morning!

fictional\_/Christopher

for the record - the future app that helps marketing company's in the real estate industry lower their photo sourcing bills was developed here. well the idea, the rest is just work (you know, the hard part)

I say apps for everything now, it is my default comment

Featured Comment
In case it gets lost in replies, see my comment above to chigurh from Jun 27 '17 5:22 : Kate's work in McMansion Hell *is educational*. The example I gave is not the only instance of people telling her similar stories. I know people locally who love her blog and say things like "I never understood my aversion to those houses until she laid it out like that!" And her serious posts - delving into history, composition, icons and signs - is like a brief Western Domestic Arch 101 course.

(Anyone else think that ThatBrickWall lives in a McMansion and can't stand a little daylight being thrown on his/her bad choices? Five comments, all on this thread that s/he registered just to comment on. It's sad to spend more money than one will likely spend on anything else in their life then realize it's really bad.)
Jun 29, 17 7:40 am
fictional\_/Christopher

Donna I agree -"You realize people live in these houses? That those photos are represent someone's livelyhood? Maybe she should actually practice architecture and make better things rather then just tear down. " This is no different than Red Carpet fashion commentary. you make that much money and still make bad choices? of course you will be mocked, why is that a surprise? or wait, are we equating wealth with intellectual and "spiritual" sucess? yeah, don't do that.

ThatBrickWall

Nice work you two. Yeah that's it exactly I live in and love McMansions and I'm here to defend them. Ha! Your so blinded by your bias and hate.

fictional\_/Christopher

haha. what? bias to what? free speech and opinion.

ThatBrickWall

You seem to think this is about McMansions. And I must love them. Anyone against her blog is a McMansion lover. This has nothing to do with the architecture.

Non Sequitur

Brickwall, was your parent's house displayed on McMansion? Is that why you're extra salty?

ThatBrickWall

No it was not but I have had to send a similar letter when work from my website was copied and used on a design blog without credit. These small laws protected me and what you're arguing, would negate mine and your ability to do the same while marketing our services. But no one can see past the McMansion here.

Non Sequitur

Booooo.... real reasons are no fun.

One difference being that your work product was used without trandformative modification. If it was rewritten, you wouldn't have a leg to stand on. If the meaning was changed - inverted, say - that again leaves you no place to stand.

One difference being that your work product was used without trandformative modification. If it was rewritten, you wouldn't have a leg to stand on. If the meaning was changed - inverted, say - that again leaves you no place to stand.

ThatBrickWall

So tell me why then cannot someone not start a blog copying your work off your website and writing snarky responses on it? Why not reproduce your drawings as I see fit for my enrichment? Those are just tools of service too! Where does it stop?


Your hate and elitist attitude says a lot. It's fine to do this because you agree with the subject matter. Set that aside and apply what happened here to your personal work. That doesn't change your mind? 

Jun 29, 17 8:11 am
Non Sequitur

So... this wanker only pops up here to defend Zillow... and is surprised that no-one takes him/her seriously? How refreshing.

ThatBrickWall

So ad hominem attacks then? I'm an outsider and love McMansions and Zillow. Good work

won and done williams

I have no problem with anyone mocking schlocky work, my own included. First amendment, baby! God bless America.

Showing up here out of the blue, anonymous, and calling the community here "haters" is not an auspicious self-introduction. So let's place some credit where it is due.

Bench

"So tell me why then cannot someone not start a blog copying your work off your website and writing snarky responses on it?"

Because that's not selling the product, its selling the snark about the product. Big difference. As miles says, inverting the meaning to something totally different, makes it different.

JLC-1

it doesn't stop, it just weeds out that without any value, like zillow.

SneakyPete

"So tell me why then cannot someone not start a blog copying your work off your website and writing snarky responses on it?"


They can, you ass. That's the entire fucking POINT.

ThatBrickWall

Ok so that's a bad analogy I'm willing to admit that. The product being sold by both parties in this instance is the same. Advertisements. How about that?

xian41

Anyone who doesn't want to live in a postmodern glass and steel box that cost $500 bucks a foot to build must be a moron. This kind of snobbery is what got architects kicked out of residential. ThatBrickWall is just responding to the attitude that makes most people not want to hire architects in the first place.

Jun 29, 17 10:37 am

or even have lunch with them

...it's not my fault architects peaked in the 1960s and then again in 1997...

Non Sequitur

Hey, another wanker who appears just to defend Zillow.

JLC-1

postmodern is dead, pick another fake style for your rant. now do you math and tell us how much these mutant elephant cages sell per foot, you'd be surprised.

"postmodern glass and steel box that cost $500 bucks a foot to build" - where on earth can that be done? Asphalt shingle roof and cedar sidewalls with painted interior starts @ $400/sf around here.

Pahrump, NV but the materials are probably lifted from a job site in Vegas

z6jbishop

[postmodern is dead] Hallelujah

That party ended 20 years ago. And not a moment too soon.

xian41

Build cost only. We are assuming you inherited the land.

JLC-1

who are "we"? and yes, a lot of assumptions, like the florida lawyer that wanted his 20 million mountain house for 250 s/f. - a lot of "professionals" don't have a clue or just want a quick scam to be rich.

^ That brings up an interesting point.

What the site comments on the stylized design choices that conflict, "or violate" historic conventions of proportion, scale, facade vs. elevation, etc. This is isn't snobbery, this is part of the profession. Think of it as a comment on grammar.

It doesn't mean that people- even architects- don't bash modernist work. In fact, it's probably more common to hear complaints about modern residential projects (who's would live in a house with a flat roof?), the difference is that it's not aggregated in a set of images on a site with annotation.  I'd be curious to see what would happen if someone had a similar take on residential modernism. Not just text, but annotation. I know of at least one modern style project under construction that could use this treatment.

Perhaps this is a direction the blog should head in- pissing everyone off about the inappropriate decisions their designers make.


And- it's a whole host of other factors that got architects "kicked out," as if they were "in" to begin with.

Jun 29, 17 11:02 am

I agree, blogs should be equal opportunity pissing matches

Jun 29, 17 11:13 am

see also: the celebrity roast

Jun 29, 17 11:14 am
ThatBrickWall

Zillow is not selling houses. It is selling Advertisements. It uses these images to create a value statement about the property, and then profits from the Ad sales from the listing and Advertisements. She then takes the image and also makes a value statement about the property, though contradictory, It is still a value statement none the less. and one which she then uses to create revenue by selling adds and merchandise. There is no protection just because you are hating on something. having a different opinion about the value of the property does not entitle you to steal the images and use them for the same purpose of generating profit through ad revenue. She is profiting from hate. But the people on here tend to agree with her valuation more so they immediately decide she is right.  

Jun 29, 17 11:59 am
SneakyPete

You keep pounding a straw man narrative that nobody seems to buy. You claim to be here to defend copyright yet don't seem to be willing to have a discussion about the nuances of fair use. Instead you bash your rhetorical head against the assumption that everyone here only likes that site because of some political bias (see your comments about liberals above). I have no sympathy for you, and I don't believe for a second that you're here for any other reason than to troll. And bro, you suck at it.

ThatBrickWall

Alright forget your bias, we don't have to acknowledge that. let's have that nuanced discussion about fair use. It's OK for her to have a valuation, and use the image to sell ads? Literally the exact same thing.

SneakyPete

The exact same thing as...?

ThatBrickWall

the exact same thing zillow is doing. they say it is worth X, because of whatever list of features. She is saying it is worthless because of whatever list of features. They both make money the same way with the same image.

SneakyPete

Or is it more akin to a comedian reading a copyrighted text as a setup to a joke? Or a musician using samples to make new music? At the genesis of this debate lies the point of copyright, something mega-companies have been perverting for massive profit for decades. Copyright was never intended to be what it is, and this is a prime example of why that's true.

ThatBrickWall

It is not same. Because the comedian is creating something new, the musician is creating something new. If she were to go further, to design a decent house with that footprint, to demonstrate how it could be modified, that would be something new. She is just being critical. The analogy would be better stated as could a music critic copy a musician's music just because they want to critic it. Are we not all critics of music and therefore entitled to any musician's music?

SneakyPete

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=film+criticism


All use clips of films they didn't make. All make money from ads. Next.

ThatBrickWall

But they are taking from the film, which does not make its money on ads, providing a critique which is a new product and making money on ads. If I copy the material in their critique and air it on my channel with a different critique that would be a problem. With the two critics one would be in violation.

SneakyPete

Your set of circumstances keeps getting narrower. Are you interested in the conversation or are you just trying to win an argument? My views on the matter come from the standard distaste for a big business going after an inconsequential little guy and making sure they stay just grey enough on the law to attempt to guarantee that it'll never get to court (chilling effect). That's the place where your majorly narrow nuanced argument would be tested, and someone like this blogger wouldn't exactly be able to afford a high priced lawyer. So when she threw her story into the court of public opinion, it got her some publicity, which means that there's attention being paid to the very narrow, specific set of circumstances you state. I think that's a good thing.

archietechie

Ok here's another example:

- Failed Architecture criticised MVRDV's renderings for the general public (https://www.failedarchitecture...)
- MVRDV chose instead not to sue them (they couldn't even if they wanted to) but to address those criticism via a localized platform (http://www.archdaily.com/78304...)

Jun 29, 17 12:22 pm
ThatBrickWall

I don't think this example applies. they couldn't sue because they do not have the same motives. one the real estate agency and the architecture firm are trying to make money selling a building, and the design services. The blog is trying to make money selling ads. What we are talking about here is both parties using the image to sell ads

archietechie

So MVRDV isn't trying to sell their project? k, lol

archietechie

Also, you don't think Failed Architecture's traffic would boost their readership count? kk, hahahaha

ThatBrickWall

MVRDV is not trying to sell ads

archietechie

Think you're confused. The analogy brought up likened MVRDV to Zillow.

ThatBrickWall

MVRDV is trying to sell the project, and their services. Zillow is selling Ads, She is selling ads.

archietechie

Failed Architecture sells ads too. Point?

ThatBrickWall

MVRDV does not have same product as Failed Architecture. This is a good example of fair use. They are creating something new, a critique. And profiting from it. Zillow is creating a critique the same way, she is also creating a critic but using material copied of the other critic.

archietechie

Not sure if your're deliberately obtuse but both cases involve images. And not sure why you're likening MVRDV to FA. Zillow is a real estate agency, they're not critiquing anything. McMansion Hell is doing the critiquing of aforementioned subject matter.

ThatBrickWall

Zillow is not a real estate agency they don't sell real estate.

JLC-1

zillow is creating a critique? in what way?

ThatBrickWall

In that they list assets and features along with creating their own valuation.

JLC-1

BS

JeromeS

Zillow is selling Ads, She is selling ads.

They are creating something new, a critique. And profiting from it.
Zillow is creating a critique the same way, she is also creating a
critic but using material copied of the other critic

This is all wrong.  Zillow is selling marketing/branding to Realtors, who must pay Zillow for preferred status etc.  Tacking on the vig, as it were.

McMansion may generate revenue, via ad space, but neither one is selling "pictures".


Jun 29, 17 2:31 pm
ThatBrickWall

Correct neither is selling the images. They are both providing a critique of the property in the images. But Zillow has to license those photos but she does not? How can that be?

JeromeS

Zillow "licenses" the photos by leveraging their web presence as a sales tool.  No money changes hands for these licenses, just the hope that your listing gets more exposure.  McMansion is doing satire- clear fair use.  Zillow is thorectically helping sell houses.  McMansion is lampooning the design of houses.  Call it art, humor or education- no matter. 

McMansion:



Jun 29, 17 4:32 pm

An attorney for the Electronic Frontier Foundation has responded to Zillow with a lengthy letter (PDF) that contains lots of citations for legal precedent. Some of the armchair lawyers posting on this thread would do well to read it.

Jun 29, 17 4:47 pm

That was fun reading. The arguments to defend Zillow on this thread ... not so much.

Yeah, I normally enjoy reading legalese about as much as I enjoy reading building codes and construction specs, but this letter was particularly gratifying. Zillow brought a pocket knife to a bazooka fight, and promptly got their head blown off.

excellent

I love McMansion Hell.  It's always been a favorite around our studio, a source of a great belly laugh at least a few times a week.  I think the owner of the site is doing the world a service.

I think this topic is interesting, and I don't pretend to have any expertise in copyright law, or Fair Use law, except what I have been exposed to in my own practice.

When we hire a photographer to shoot a project for us, we sign a use agreement which specifies how we can use the photos.  They always prohibit third party usage, unless a separate agreement is reached with the third party.  We are prohibited under that agreement to give anyone else usage of the images without permission of the photographer.

I do know that we spend a LOT of money on professional photography of our projects, and spend a lot of time to arrange, administrate, coordinate and execute photoshoots, which often involve several days for a team of people. We have a lot invested in these endeavors, and the results are very valuable assets for us. 

We have had many instances where vendors have grabbed photos from our website, and have used the images in advertisements without permission, often for products with which we have no desire to be affiliated.  We have also had ex-employees grab digital images of projects which they worked on (or were in the room when the work was done :) , and then go out on their own, open an office, and become a competitor to us, and put the images up on their new website as if they had authored the project.  In both of these cases, we contact the other party and insist that they have no right to use the images, and insist that they remove them from their sites, or at least ask that they replace the image with one that's watermarked with our logo.

I realize that the McMansion Hell case is a bit different.  It's murkier, since Zillow is a third party, and don't own the photos.  McMH is making mone off the site, so it's definitely a commercial enterprise, but it's not like they are reselling the photography.  I hope that McMH and Zillow can work it out between themselves, and keep the lawyers out of it.  





Jun 29, 17 5:05 pm

And, scene.

Jun 29, 17 5:21 pm

That didn't take long.

Good result!

Jun 29, 17 5:25 pm
JeromeS

Poole:  "Zillow has a big dick" said with menace and promise

Nazar:  sound of a zipper lowering and meaty thud as giant phallus hits the desk.  Measurements obtained. Blows are struck by said manhood about the head and neck of Mr. Poole.

Nazar exits stage left.

Scene

Jun 29, 17 5:29 pm
ThatBrickWall

I agree that's probably a good result. She agreed to not copy more images. They agreed to drop the issue. People should think more critically about how they copy things off websites. My experience has been much like Erik's a couple posts above. No one gets taught this in school. and everyone thinks if it's on the internet its free. 

Jun 29, 17 5:59 pm

I think you still missed the point. She offered to not use Zillow for the source of the images she uses in the future. She didn't have to do that for any reason other than she decided to. Erik's experience (and yours apparently) are nothing like this one.

fictional\_/Christopher

no everything on the internet is free, thats the point of the internet.

SneakyPete

That blew up in their faces spectacularly. 

Jun 29, 17 7:36 pm
citizen

Thus ends another Zillow fight, and folds another Zillowcase.

Jun 29, 17 8:30 pm

Well done, citizen.

fictional\_/Christopher

already taken....    http://fuckzillow.com/

Jun 29, 17 8:32 pm

A simple search tells you all you need to know.

https://www.google.com/search?...

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