Green Day Copyright Dispute Ends Peacefully

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Copyright lawsuits: there seems to be a new one popping up in the entertainment industry every other day. Recently, Green Day found themselves on the wrong end of one of these lawsuit. Street artist Dereck Seltzer accused the “American Idiot” rockers of using his ‘Scream Icon’ during their 2009 tour without his permission. The image in question, which depicts the terrified face of a woman, appeared on a screen just above the stage as the band performed their song “East Jesus Nowhere.” Green Day’s set designer spotted Seltzer’s image on a Sunset Boulevard wall and decided to use it in the tour.

Green Day can breathe a sigh of relief as the dispute, which was filed in 2010, has finally come to a close. A judge in the appellate court recently ruled that the band is not liable for copyright of the harrowing image. In referring to the differences of the original and the version used on the band’s tour, Judge Diarmund O’Scannlain concluded that the significant differences in both pieces were apparent stating, “[This] Scream Icon conveys new information, new aesthetics, new insights and understandings that are plainly distinct from those of the original piece.”

Despite losing the copyright case, Dereck Seltzer can breathe a sigh of relief of his own as the judge decided Green Day should not be awarded legal fees amounting to $201,000.

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