Tim Pawlenty violated copyright with new campaign ad, receives cease and desist order

Categories: T-Paw
pawlenty hockey ad.jpg
Tim Pawlenty pirated ABC Sports footage for this ad.
Tim Pawlenty flagrantly violated ABC Sports' copyright in his new campaign video, attracting a cease-and-desist order that will likely remove it from the Iowa airwaves.

Pawlenty violated the copyright of ABC Sports by using footage from the "Miracle on Ice" hockey game in which the U.S. beat the Soviets in the 1980 Winter Olympics, according to the cease and desist letter, which seemed to take the campaign off-guard this afternoon.

Pawlenty campaign spokesman Alex Conant claimed he thought it was Fair Use, but ABC Sports begs to differ.
"It's a violation of our copyright and exclusive proprietary rights," said Louise Argianas, director of rights and clearances for ABC Sports. "And they used our announcer's voice which they are not allowed to do either," she said. "Which I'm going to have to call his agent about."

Shouldn't somebody have checked if this was actually Fair Use before filming and airing the commercial? If nothing else, this makes Pawlenty's media machine look like a small-time operation.

And he'll need a new TV ad, with his own miracle.


Sponsor Content

My Voice Nation Help
Sort: Newest | Oldest
MN Resident
MN Resident

He's bragging about "taking down a government," when he was supposed to be leading that government? Damn, the bar for "leadership" in Republican circles is practically underground these days. 


That looks like fair use to me. It doesn't stop being fair use just because ABC says it isn't. Or because Pawlenty is a twerp.


"Looks like fair use"? I'm not a lawyer, but it's pretty clear you aren't either. Almost all televised sports material is copyrighted, and T-Paw's campaign decided to use a clip from a commercially produced piece to promote his candidacy.

T-Paw's people screwed up and ABC is completely justified in not only issuing a C&D letter, but also filing suit for damages based on the infringement - which I hope they do.  Pawlenty isn't above the law, nor is his campaign. If you hire know-nothing amateurs who don't clear the rights to something before airing it, you deserve to pay the price.

Now Trending

Minnesota Concert Tickets

From the Vault