Saturday, November 8, 2014

Sincerest Form Of Flattery

8/10/2013 Torch Run for Special Olympics

The downside of publishing 10,000 photographs over the past 7.5 years is it's sometimes hard to recognize when someone borrows one without permission, a clear violation of copyright law.

I'm not surprised when the understaffed mainstream media does it with breaking news (although they are getting better about asking for permission) but I was a little surprised the town and UMass would do it.

Well I guess technically it was U3 Advisers, the $60,000 consultant hired to map out a strategy for future growth of housing and economic development between the town and our #1 employer UMass/Amherst, the flagship of higher education in an education oriented state.

But the town published the "Final Report" on the town website, as did the Town Gown Steering Committee on their state website.

I actually did notice the photo when it was first used at the preliminary presentation back in early August since I  have enjoyed covering the jointly produced by APD/UMPD "Torch Run" to benefit Special Olympics.

This past year I notice my friends in the mainstream media didn't cover the annual event, but since they did the year before I just assumed the photo was one of theirs and used with permission.

Or taken by any number of folks who work for the University in "community relations".  Rumor has it they even hired a few students to do social media to counteract my pain-in-the-ass blog.

A Town Meeting member recently posted to the privately owned Amherst Town Meeting listserve Blarney Blowout thumbnails via Google images (which is not a copyright violation) in response to another Town Meeting member asking about the Torch Run photo (where was it taken and what was the event) used in the U3 Advisers final report. 

 Fearing Street 2:10 pm (UMPD video screen grab)

Yes, the Blarney Blowout will be l-o-n-g remembered -- as well it should.  In fact, I'm working on a story for Monday that uses previously unpublished video of the sad day taken by a not overly happy UMass police officer.

So get ready for the UMass PR machine to counter with high resolution photos of kitties and unicorns.  At least I will not have to worry about them stealing those from me (not my kind of photo shoots).

 APD Chief Livingstone (center) without riot gear, North Pleasant/Fearing Street 2:10 pm 
screen grab from UMPD video shot that day


Anonymous said...

I've been told by a senior member of the UMass faculty that there is a lot of work currently going on behind scenes about alcohol in general and the blarney blowout specifically.

Larry Kelley said...

Yeah well after Blarney 2014 made the Boston Globe, N.Y. Times, Time Magazine and many of the TV networks, I'm not surprised.

But where were they three years ago when I (pretty much single-handedly) first starting covering it.

Anonymous said...

So this means that there's some critical mass of shame which will cause the UMass administration to take action to address student behavior?

Good to know.

Larry Kelley said...

Yes, and I wonder how many kids have to die from a heroin OD, or commit suicide, before they will get serious about treating it rather than just covering it up after the fact.

Anonymous said...

Kudos Larry,

Keep pushing this issue - your efforts to stomp out tobacco smoking (in public places) resulted in a significant tobacco use reduction overall (replicated in many other places around the world). Similar tactics might work for alcohol (think of all the collective collateral damage from alcohol intoxication as the analogue of second hand smoke)?


Larry Kelley said...


Sometimes I forget how contentious and hard fought the Smoking Ban was, just prior to the rise of the Internet.

Especially since now it's such a commonly accepted -- even expected -- kind of thing.

Anonymous said...

Smoking and drinking still legal despite efforts of Carrie Nation, thank goodness. I do hope that the ban of public smoking will apply to marijuana as well. I don't want that 2nd-hand stuff in my lungs

Dr. Ed said...

Even more than our attitude towards smoking, what is striking when you think about it is how our attitude toward non-heterosexuality has changed over the past 25 years.

A crime in the 1960's and formally defined as a "mental illness" until 1973, gays & lesbians were very much "in the closet" in the 1980's. We've gone from that to THIS -- your gender is now whatever you think it is...

Change comes quickly -- and the results are often quite different from what anyone wo9ld have expected. I think you're going to find that happening with your efforts to stop UM students from drinking....

Anonymous said...

You're not alone in referring to "gays "and "lesbians." Lesbians Are gay. I've always wondered why the distiction. Does the isle of Lesbos figure into things that much? In need of enlightenment here.

Dr. Ed said...

See the American Psychological
Association Style Guide. It says use "gays & lesbians" so I do.

Anonymous said...

Blow your own horn much? Oh yeah, I forgot who I was writing to. All you do is blow your own horn. And the only reason the drunkeness made it to national news is because you can't shut up about it. Cheap sensationalism will never replace actual journalism. Every chance you get you bring sensational pictures back. How many times will you show the same images?

When will you get a real job and stop living off the government?