In the wake of the Associated Press accusing artist Shepard Fairey of copyright infringement for basing his now ubiquitous Obama Hope poster on one of their photographs, Stacia Yeapanis’ talk on fair use at this year’s Version Media Festival is exceptionally relevant. Yeapanis also plucks materials from popular culture and reformats them in her video art, called fanvids, so-called because she uses material from Xena and Buffy as a fan. Through her own experience having her work removed from YouTube by Fox Broadcasting, she has extensive knowledge of the current roadblocks, such as the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA), to individuals being able to exercise their right of “Fair Use” as spelled out in the US Copyright Code. She has uncovered information regarding how, as a result of the DMCA, websites such as YouTube are able to protect themselves from copyright-infringement liability by using automated systems to help large-scale copyright holders identify their content on line. Yeapanis plans to address “why the DMCA is being misused by many large corporate media companies to intimidate individuals into taking down their videos,” in effect, keeping many cases out of the courts and preventing new precedents for new media practices from being established. “My work is about the user’s response, not the producer’s intent,” she says. (Sara McCool)
Stacia Yeapanis lectures on “We Have a Right to Be Angry: Feminism, Fanvids and Fair Use,” Saturday April 25, 6pm, as part of Version Festival, at The Benton House complex, 3052 S. Gratten Ave., Benton House Gymnasium Classroom, ground floor.