In This Episode
WilmerHale Partner Louis Tompros and Counsel Stephanie Lin discuss the Pepe the Frog copyright infringement case with host John Walsh. Louis, Stephanie and a team from WilmerHale assisted Matt Furie, the creator of Pepe the Frog, with enforcing his intellectual property rights to end the misappropriation of Pepe by alt-right entities. Louis and Stephanie discuss the legal actions brought on behalf of Furie, and his efforts to reclaim his work. The interview also highlights the challenges of “memeification” and how it applies to copyright protection.
- Background on Pepe the Frog copyright cases
- In trademark law, certain marks can become generic.
- Copyright law doesn’t have that exception: just because something becomes extremely popular doesn’t mean that the copyright holder loses control.
- United Feature Syndicate, Inc. v. Jeff Koons (regarding use of Odie image from Garfield comic strip)
- ‘Meme-ification’ Isn’t A Thing, ‘Pepe’ Artist Tells Infowars (Law360—free login required)
- “Feels Good Man” documentary: The film can be viewed on various streaming platforms and on PBS.