Our fellow Fan-Sided bloggers at Striphype have been threatened with a law suit by their very own Bengals. In one of the strangest moves by a team I’ve seen, the Bengals are saying that a web site devoted to promoting their team in a loving fashion is violating copyright by among other things trying to give away a jersey to fans and by using pictures that the Bengals don’t own copyright to themselves. Details here.
Now, let me put this out there. As many of you know, I work for a business magazine as my day job. I am incredibly aware of the importance of copyright to any organization. I am, in fact, responsible for obtaining said copyrights. But the Bengals are nuts. Not only are they wrong about what their rights are, but they are practicing poor copyright protection policies anyway as they are essentially suing someone for giving them free advertising.
Even a moron can see that public domain pictures and privately owned jerseys given away by the site are not under the control of the Bengals. But because there is no way it is worth fighting this in court, Stripehype has complied. Not only has it redesigned the website, but the writers of the blog have declared themselves Cleveland Browns fans. And I don’t blame them.
I don’t know if Dan Snyder knows Riggos Rag exists. I know he doesn’t care. Or if he cares, it is only in the “oh, isn’t it nice there are a couple of guys that like the team enough to write about it” kinda way. And that is as it should be. I am aware that we are insignificant to all but like five people outside our own families . The rest of you will just go read another blog if Dan decided to take us out.
But imagine for a moment that the Bengals have sent similar threats to all the other Bengal blogs. They very well could have. I don’t know. Or if they haven’t yet, maybe they will soon.
For all you Dan Snyder haters out there and I know there are a bunch, consider yourselves lucky that Dan knows good PR when he sees it. To my knowledge, none of the excellent blogs in my blog roll have ever been bothered by the Skins and many of us have been helped by them. With the exception of maybe the $75 parking and free agent gaffes, Dan has never done anything to hurt his fans. Mike Brown is finding new and ridiculous ways to do it every day.