[messengers] Use of likeness without permission (epilogue)

Date: 2 Dec 2010 14:19:57 +0100
From: Corey Hilliard <coreythecourier@xxxxxxxxx>

I thank those of you that responded for your letters to Kenda and emails to
me about your opinions in addressing this matter.

Viewpoints fell into a few categories on the Marco versus
KendaTires/Shutterstock.com/"S.V. Luma" affair:

Kenda tires, a big corporation, is exploiting the little guy. Let's boycott
their product, hitting them in the pocket.
The face in the photo was blurred and unrecognizable. Shutterstock.com and
the photographer had every legal right to sell the photo, Kenda Tires the
right to use it for advertising.
Corey, you have a big mouth and may have smeared the reputation of the wrong
person by crying wolf.

Now that Kenda has agreed to take care of Marco when he contacts them, I
feel justified for making lots of noise. I am not excited about being
responsible for temporarily tarnishing the image of Kenda Tires. On
reflection, they responded honestly and quickly when confronted about the
Marco C. "Commuter" ad.

Several photographers and people with a firmer grasp on law have said sale
and usage of the picture of Marco on his bike were legal because all logos
and his face were edited by Photoshop. Legally, that is true. But during the
back and forth of several agitated emails, I discovered that the
photographer took random photographs of individuals, selling their image
without their knowledge or signature on a release form. While technically
what they did was in a legal gray area of acceptability, ethically they have
no solid ground on which to stand. But, I ask: if the face was blurred, how
was I and several others able to immediately able to recognize our friend
Marco? Peer recognition. And being a cyclist who rides for money, use of his
photo while he works is equivalent to theft.

Yes, I have been boastful, extravagant and silly to the point of
embarrassment in the past, but the potential for my friend to be exploited
monetarily was too much for me to idly watch and tolerate. I initially
became agitated when I saw an ad in a US magazine. After I sent emails
asking for opinions on the matter (I know that I am not always right), I was
forwarded another ad from someone outside of the US with the same photo of
Marco but digitally manipulated so that he faced the opposite direction. It
was then I felt stronger the need to stop the ad campaign.

Many of the riders in the USA ride in terrible conditions with low pay, no
vacation, no real health benefits, no retirement plans, no college
reimbursementt and must pay for bicycle expenses out of pocket with the
threat of death from every passing car, cab, truck and bus. It is a shit
situation, but one in which the rider is aware of the pros and cons. Someone
attempting to make money off of messengers while riding in the rain made my
blood boil. (I thought about this while riding in monsoon-like conditions
yesterday) After much investigations, I was right in being angry. The anger
should have been directed toward the photography company that sold the photo
and the photographer that tried to exploit people on the street and
digitally manipulating their image.

When I see Kenda Tire ads in the coming months with a clear photos of Marco
Creacy, I will feel vindicated. When you see those ads you should buy their

Corey the Courier
"There is something wrong in a government where they who do the most have
the least. There is something wrong when honesty wears a rag, and rascality
a robe; when the loving, the tender, eat a crust, while the infamous sit at
the banquets" -Robert G. Ingersoll.