Dash Snow’s Estate Sues McDonald’s for Copyright Infringement at ‘Graffiti Themed’ Locales

Posted on: October 12th, 2016 at 5:11 am by

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Dash Snow memorial above Allen St.

Apparently, graffiti-themed McDonald’s franchises are a thing. Who knew? And so is allegedly stealing tags of well known writers to lend credibility to this bullshit.

Yep, another instance of corporate America usurping the tag of an iconic graffiti writer … which then resulted in a lawsuit.

In this case, it’s the late artist Dash Snow (aka SACE), who passed away a little more than seven years ago. His estate last week – vis-a-vis former girlfriend and executor Jade Berreau – filed a formal copyright infringement case against McDonald’s for inclusion of the tag in several locations across the US and UK. Specifically for “copyright infringement, trademark infringement, unfair competition, falsification of ‘copyright management information’ under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, and negligence.”

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Photo: Evening Standard

Below is an excerpt of the complaint, obtained by Hyperallergic:

Defendants are using Mr. Snow’s artwork as décor in hundreds of McDonald’s restaurants, and are using his name and signature in a manner suggesting that Mr. Snow created all of the surrounding artwork (which adorns the entirety of McDonald’s graffiti-themed restaurants) … [including] a stylized signature of his pseudonym ‘SACE,’ which clearly includes a brazen copy of Mr. Snow’s work.

He has never made his original art available on the internet, in retail stores, or in restaurants—partly for artistic reasons but also because doing so would diminish the value of his work.

Nothing is more antithetical to Mr. Snow’s outsider ‘street cred’ than association with corporate consumerism—of which McDonald’s and its marketing are the epitome.

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