New York Port Authority Claims Ownership Of Skyline Image in Latest Trademark Abuse


If the State can own the rain that falls from the sky, hits your roof, and eventually finds its way into the local sewer, then certainly they own the photons that reflect off the buildings, and stream into your camera lens!

JONATHAN TURLEY

NYC_Top_of_the_Rock_Pano

Warning: the image above may get you sued by the New York Port Authority. We have long discussed the insane evolution of trademark and copyright laws. Now, Fishs Eddy, a housewares store in Manhattan, has been hit with a cease-and-desist letter from the Metropolitan Transit Authority (MTA) over dishes that merely show the skyline of the city. The MTA claims that the common silhouette of the city includes some of its “assets” and that the store must destroy all of its products with the images and promise never again to sell images of the skyline. It is reminiscent of the English decision finding that taking photographs of London icons are also violations. Here the authority is claiming ownership to skyline images and 9-11 images even in silhouette.

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