Google Prevented From Using Australian Aboriginal Flag Because It's Covered By Copyright

from the who-copyrights-a-flag? dept

A whole bunch of folks have been sending in the news of Google needing to edit out the Aboriginal flag that was originally a part of an Australia Day Google logo. Google had apparently run a contest for a logo and an 11-year-old girl had won, after designing the logo, using various animals native to Australia, with the Aboriginal flag behind one of the "O"s. But when the logo went up on the site, it was missing the flag:
It wasn't a case of Google being insensitive. It was a case of Google being forced to remove it because, believe it or not, the Australian Aboriginal flag is covered by copyright, and the copyright holder wouldn't let Google use it because the company had asked if it could use it for free. It's hard to fathom why anyone would ever want a flag covered by copyright (do we need more incentives to create new flags?). The report notes that the artist "designed the flag as a symbol of unity and national identity" in the 1970s, but apparently that unity and identity doesn't extend to anyone else actually displaying the flag without paying for it.

Filed Under: aboriginal, australia, copyright, flags
Companies: google


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  1. identicon
    Vic, 26 Jan 2010 @ 4:50pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: What about this article?

    Here is a quote from a Wiki page about the flag: The Aboriginal flag sometimes substitutes the Union Flag in proposed new Australian flag designs. Such flags are presented in science fiction as futuristic Australian flags, as in the film Event Horizon, where it was worn by Sam Neill.[10] Many Aboriginal people object to this use, including Harold Thomas, who said “Our flag is not a secondary thing. It stands on its own, not to be placed as an adjunct to any other thing. It shouldn't be treated that way.” So, as we see it has been used before without it's creator's agreement. But there is not a single word about any lawsuit against any movie studios. So, I believe, they do appreciate the flag being made visible for some reason?

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