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Advocacy News

Empowering Creatives: Advocacy in Action at the School of Visual Arts

The Graphic Artists Guild Advocacy Liaison, Delanie West visited the School of Visual Arts (SVA) to tell the students of Professor Carol R. Steinberg about essential topics such as non-disclosure agreements, contract negotiations, and understanding royalty rates.  This talk ..

Artistic Integrity vs. Copyright Infringement: The Richard Prince ‘New Portraits’ Controversy

In a landmark legal confrontation, the Manhattan federal court has issued a judgment for plaintiff, against defendant Richard Prince, an artist renowned for

Judge Rules AI Artwork Can’t Be Copyrighted

The court decision affirms the Copyright Office’s position that only works authored by human beings can be copyrighted.

Graphic Artists Guild Position on AI Image Generative Technologies

The Guild position on AI generative technology is grounded on the fundamental rights of artists: credit, consent, and compensation.

The Graphic Artists Guild Urges Governor Hochul to Sign NY State Freelance Isn’t Free Act

This much-needed legislation was passed in June, 2022, but was vetoed by Governor Hochul last December.

The Graphic Artists Guild Applauds SCOTUS Opinion in Warhol v Goldsmith

In light of confusing and often contradictory applications of a fair use analysis in lower court rulings, the SCOTUS opinion provides valuable guidance and limits on the consideration of “tranformativeness.”

The Guild Joins the Human Artistry Campaign

The Campaign supports interests of creators in the face of the rapid advancement of AI generative technologies.

Guild Partnering in AI/ML Conference

The Guild is partnering with Concept Art Association, National Cartoonists Society, Society of Illustrators, and Australian Cartoonists Association in producing the AI/ML Media Summit on March 10th.

AI Art Generators: Where We Stand

The Guild is pushing for the best means to further the interests of artists: through policies, education, and advocacy within our community and with the players, including artists, who will shape the future of AI image generators.

Disappointment with the Veto of the Freelance Isn’t Free Law

While disappointed with the veto by NY Governor Kathy Hochul, the Guild is committed to seeing that legislation on behalf of freelancers is passed and successfully enacted in the new year. 

Graphic Artists Guild Issues Statement of Concern with AI Image Generators

The Graphic Artists Guild has issued a statement of concern to the IFRRO General Assembly on AI image generators, and the detrimental impact this technology is having on graphic artists.

The Graphic Artists Guild Applauds the Passage of the Freelance Isn’t Free Act

The Graphic Artists Guild applauds the passage of the Freelance Isn’t Free Act, S8369/A9368, in New York State.

Copyright Small Claims: Advocate for Fair Fees

The proposed filing fees for copyright small claims are too high and will be detrimental to creators.

Addressing Copyright Piracy by States: Copyright Office Report

The Copyright Office report recommends Congress takes measures to address copyright infringements perpetuated by states.

Copyright Office Extends COVID-Related Operations Provisions

The Copyright Office has extended its COVID-related adjustments to the copyright registration process until September 8, 2021.

#MoMAPhotoClub: That Cool Hashtag is a Rights Grab

MoMA is claiming extensive nonexclusive rights to any photo posted to social media with their #MoMAPhotoClub hashtag.

Copyright Office Solicits Feedback on Copyright Small Claims Board

The Guild joined other creators’ organizations in providing the Copyright Office feedback on proposed procedures for the copyright small claims board.

Google v. Oracle Decision Troubling for Creators

The court ruled 6-2 that Google’s copying of Oracle’s code falls under fair use, a decision that could result in a broadening of the doctrine.

Work for Free: ICoD Position on Unpaid Work

ICoD’s Position on unpaid work helps designers navigate when to consider and reject a request for unpaid or uncompensated work.

Copyright Office Publishes CASE Act Resource Page

We’re getting closer to the implementation of a copyright small claims board! The Copyright Office has published resources on the CASE Act and the creation of the copyright claims board (CCB).

CASE Act Update: What’s Next for a Small Claims Tribunal

Now that the CASE Act is signed into law, the Copyright Office has 12-18 months to establish a copyright small claims tribunal, and we’ll be weighing in.

The Graphic Artists Guild Applauds the Passage of the CASE Act

The Graphic Artists Guild applauds the passage of The CASE Act, The Copyright Alternative in Small Claims Enforcement Act of 2019.

Why Designer/Illustrator Crisy Meschieri Supports the CASE Act  

I think of S 1273 as the “just in case” act — just in case my artwork gets stolen, I’ll have a small copyright claims tribunal to go to.

Graphic Designer Kate’s Story: Why We Need the CASE Act

An association with a mission to support local small businesses had no issue with taking advantage of her small business.

Why Children’s Book Illustrator Liz DiFiore Supports the CASE Act  

No one will fight for us, so we must stand up for ourselves. Take 5 minutes today to stand up for your right to be paid for your work.

Studio Owner Jay’s Story: Why We Need the CASE Act

A client used a logo design he had rejected — and didn’t pay for — and then said “you should take me to court.”

CASE Act: Down to the Wire

We have until the end of this year to get S 1273, the CASE Act, passed by the Senate – and finally get justice for individual creators!

ICoD Publishes Professional Code of Conduct for Designers

ICoD’s Code was constructed to provide guidance to design associations intending to craft their own codes, and to educational institutions developing curricula.

Copyright Alliance Comments Spotlight Infringement by States

Copyright Alliance’s comments on sovereign immunity shed light on how pervasive copyright infringement by states and state agencies is.

What to Tell Your Senators About the CASE Act

Meetings between Senatorial staff and Guild members highlighted how important it is for Congress to hear from their constituents to get The CASE Act passed.

National Emergency Library Closes, But Open Library Continues to Infringe Copyrights

While the Internet Archive shut down it’s National Emergency Library, it continues to violate copyrights to the detriment of visual artists and authors.

A Pandemic is a Good Time to Pass the CASE Act

As creators are facing dire financial circumstances caused by the COVID crisis, the time has come to pass The CASE Act.

A $200-Million Publisher Can Embed Your Instagram Images – What You Can Do About It

A court opinion has made it clear that users can sidestep licensing images by using Instagram’s embedding API, so associations have proposed a solution.

Plea to Congress to Support Individual Creators and Microbusinesses

The Guild has sent a letter to Congress asking for greater economic support for freelancers, sole proprietors, and micro-businesses of under 10 employees.

Supreme Court Rules No Protection from State Copyright Infringement

The Supreme Court ruled Congress didn’t have the authority to take away the states’ sovereign immunity from copyright infringement via the Copyright Remedy Clarification Act.

Guild Responds to Copyright Office Inquiry on Online Publication

The Graphic Artists Guild submitted comments to a Notice of Inquiry from the Copyright Office on online publication.

Oracle vs Google: Guild Joins Amicus Brief

The Graphic Artists Guild has joined nine other creators’ rights organizations on an amicus brief submitted in Google LLC vs Oracle America, Inc.

California’s AB5 Bill and the Unintended Consequences for Freelancers

California’s AB5 attempts to address labor issues for gig-economy workers, but has resulted in companies being reluctant to hire independent contractors.

Amicus Brief: Court Awards an Infringer Legal Fees Based on Technical Defense

A Ninth Circuit court decision awarded attorney’s fees to an infringer who prevailed on a technical defense.

The CASE Act Passes the House Judiciary Committee

The House Judiciary Committee passed H.R. 2426, The CASE Act, late on September 10th.

Graphic Artists Guild Thanks the House Judiciary Committee for Passing The CASE Act

The Guild thanks the House Judiciary Committee for passing HR 2426, The CASE Act, out of committee by voice vote with no dissensions. The Bill now proceeds to the full House for consideration.

Restore Respect for Artists’ Work by Giving Them Easier Legal Recourse

It’s not easy making a living as an artist when people feel entitled to simply grab your work and use it without paying.

How the CASE Act Will Work: Step by Step

From filing a claim to final decision, using small copyright claim process is relatively simple.

The Guild Joins NPPA and ASMP Amicus Brief on Copyright Infringement by States

The Guild joined an amicus brief authored by ASMP and NPPA in a lawsuit before the Supreme Court addressing copyrights and state sovereign immunity.

Roadtrip Recap: The Guild on Capitol Hill

Four Guild board members joined other creators in Washington DC to advocate for The CASE Act and attend the Senate Judiciary Hearing on the Bill.

Graphic Designer Dawn’s Story: Why We Need the CASE Act

An designer’s clients are using her copyrighted work and refusing to pay their invoices.

The Senate Judiciary Committee Passes The CASE Act

The Graphic Artists Guild applauds the Senate Judiciary Committee for passing S 1273, The CASE Act (The Copyright Alternative in Small Claims Enforcement Act of 2019), through markup.

Illustrator Arthur’s Story: Why We Need the CASE Act

An illustrator discovered his Broadway production artwork was being used without his knowledge by small theaters nationwide.

Takings Clause Invoked to Address Copyright Infringement by State Agency

Photographer Jim Olive discovered an alternate way to demand payment for a copyright infringement: through the Takings Clause.

Court of Appeals Throws Out Faulty Fair Use Verdict

On April 26, 2019 the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a lower court finding of fair use in Brammer versus Violent Hues Productions.

IAF Panel: Authors Rights Issues from “Across the Pond”

The Guild participated in a panel discussion on authors’ rights and copyright issues conducted by the International Authors Forum (IAF) in New York City.

The Guild Welcomes the Introduction of The CASE Act into the House and Senate

The Graphic Artists Guild applauds the introduction of The Copyright Alternative in Small Claims Enforcement Act (CASE Act into the House of Representatives, and for the first time into the Senate.

Karyn Temple Named Register of Copyrights

The Graphic Artists Guild welcomes the appointment of Karen Temple as the Register of Copyrights.

Copyright Office Replaces Unpublished Collection Registration Option with Group Registration of Unpublished Works

Creators have until March 15, 2019 to register large collections of unregistered works.

Update on the CASE Act: How We Ended 2018 and Next Steps

Although The CASE Act expired in December with no bill signed into law, our advocacy efforts on behalf of the bill weren’t in vain. We got the attention of lawmakers, and expect the Act to be reintroduced this year

Guild Responds to Copyright Office Inquiry on Modernization

The Graphic Artists Guild responded to the Copyright Office’s Notice of Inquiry (NOI) on Registration Modernization, with comments focused on the particular concerns of illustrators and designers.

Update on The CASE Act: Advocating for a Copyright Small Claims Process

The Guild joined representatives from \visual artist associations for Congressional visits in January and in April in support of The CASE Act.

There’s Work to Do on Copyright Small Claims

The CASE Act (H.R. 3945) is widely supported, but we need creators to help move it forward.

Health Insurance Options, Now That the Federal Enrollment Period is Over

If you missed the enrollment period for the federal exchange, you may still have options to get coverage at

The Guild Joins Visual Artists for a December Lobbying Visit

On December 4-5, the Guild joined our Coalition of Visual Artists for a trip to Capitol Hill to lobby on behalf of graphic artists in support of the CASE Act.

Guild Responds to Copyright Office Request on Group Registrations

The Graphic Artists Guild has submitted a response to a proposed rulemaking by the Copyright Office on Group Registrations of Unpublished Works.

Montreal Design Declaration: “All People Deserve to Live in a Well-Designed World”

On October 24, representatives from 14 international associations challenged designers, educators, governments, and the private sector to work collaboratively.

From Design Certification to National Design Policies

ico-D’s annual Platform Meeting took place October 13 and 14 in Montréal, Canada this year, and Rebecca Blake represented the Guild.

Call to Action: Ask Your Representative to Co-Sponsor Copyright Small Claims Legislation!

The Guild is calling on graphic artists contact their representatives and ask them to support the CASE Act, the Copyright Enforcement in Small Claims Act.

The Guild Supports the Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement Act

The Graphic Artists Guild welcomes the introduction of HR 3945, the Copyright Alternative in Small-Claims Enforcement Act of 2017 or CASE Act.

The Guild Joins Photographers in Meeting with Rep. Hakeem Jeffries

Guild National President Lara Kisielewska and Advocacy Liaison Rebecca Blake joined representatives from ASMP, NPPA, and APA in meeting Rep. Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY) September 15th.

Graphic Artists Guild Signs on to Copyright Alliance Letter to NAFTA Negotiator Lighthizer

The Guild has signed on to a letter drafted by the Copyright Alliance requesting that NAFTA negotiations address the modernization of the copyright provisions of the agreement.

Guild Joins Coalition of Visual Artists for Congressional Visits

On July 20th, the Guild joined members of the Coalition of Visual Artists for productive meetings with Congressional staff on key copyright issues.

NEA Granted a Reprieve; Arts Advocates Gear Up for the Longer Fight

Arts advocates were appalled when the budget proposed by the Trump transition team called for eliminating the National Endowment for the Arts, along with steep cuts to other cultural and social programs.

Contact your Representative and ask them to vote YES on H.R. 1695

We’re calling upon visual artists and those who support a vibrant creative community to contact their representatives and ask them to support H.R. 1695.

Copyright Office Modernization: Through an Artist’s Lens

To help facilitate the marketplace for creative works, visual artists have long called for modernizing the US Copyright Office.

The Guild Applauds the Introduction of the “Register of Copyrights Selection and Accountability Act”

The Graphic Artists Guild applauds the introduction of H.R. 1695, the “Register of Copyright Selection and Accountability Act of 2017,” on March 23.

Eliminating the NEA: FastCompany Outlines What a Bad Idea This Is

In its article, “Defunding the NEA Would Be Incredibly Stupid: Here’s Why,” FastCompany pulls no punches in contesting the wisdom of that move.

Response Submitted to Copyright Office Reform Policy Proposal

The Guild joined the Coalition of Visual Artists in submitting a response to the policy proposal for reform of the Copyright Office drafted by House Judiciary leadership.

Photography Associations Need Input on Group Registrations

Our photography associations are requesting input from professional photographers on their workflow and how they register their copyrights.

Was Your Copyright Infringed Online? Copyright Alliance Survey Needs your Input

The Copyright Office has sent out a request for additional information from stakeholders on DMCA (Digital Millennium Copyright Act) safe harbor provisions.

We Need Your Voice on the next Register of Copyrights

We’re asking all visual artists, and all who rely on a strong copyright system, to respond to the Library of Congress’ survey on the next Register of Copyrights.

Fairness for Small Creators Act Introduced

The Guild applauds the introduction of H.R. 6496, the “Fairness for Small Creators Act” introduced by Rep. Judy Chu [D-NY] and Rep. Lamar Smith [R-TX].

First Policy Proposal from Judiciary Committee Hearings Released

The Graphic Artists Guild welcomes the first policy proposal resulting from the Judicary Committee’s review of U.S. copyright law, released by House Judiciary Committee Chair Bob Goodlatte and Ranking Member John Conyers.

Update on Freelance Isn’t Free: NYC Mayor Signs Bill into Law

The law is the first of its kind in the nation, providing legal recourse for freelancers to pursue clients for non-payment.

Statement on Removal of Registrar of Copyrights by Copyright Alliance

The Copyright Alliance released a statement that echoes our concerns with the removal of Maria Pallante as Register of Copyrights.

Workgroups Present to the International Design Community at ico-D Platform Meetings

The Guild particpated in ico-D’s Platform Meetings by heading a session on National Design Policy.

National Design Policies: Why They Matter

A national design policy is a systemic and strategic government plan to support its design sector to achieve various ends.

An Open Letter to Political Candidates on Copyright

The Copyright Alliance has published an open letter to the 2016 political candidates, advocating for a strong copyright system and a safe and secure Internet.

Coalition of Visual Artists Welcomes Introduction of Establishing Small Claims Board for Copyright

A coalition of visual artist groups commends the attention that a copyright small claims legislation is now garnering on Capitol Hill.

Guild Advocacy Liaison Testifies at Copyright Office Discussion on the DMCA Notice

The Guild participated in panel discussions conducted by the Copyright Office on the DMCA takedown process.

NYC’s Freelance Isn’t Free Act Hopes to Redress Non-Payment

New York City’s Freelance Isn’t Free Act has been championed by the Freelancers Union and founder Sara Horowitz.

Deadline on Survey on DMCA Notice Extended to March 20

The deadline for the survey on infringement of online copyrighted images and the DMCA take-down notice has been extended to March 20th.

Survey for Visual Artists About the DMCA Notice

We’d like to know about your experience with online infringement and the DMCA notice process.

Copyright Small Claims White Paper Released by Visual Arts Associations

Several visual artist groups, representing hundreds of thousands of creators, have joined forces to propose key components of potentially forthcoming small claims legislation.

The DMCA Notice: “Take Down” is Letting Down Artists

Since the DMCA notice procedure was written into law in 1998, it’s proven to be of limited effectiveness in combating copyright infringement online.

NEA Report Shows Stronger Contribution of the Arts to the US Economy than Previously Assumed

A report issued in mid-January by the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) concludes that the arts make 4% of the GDP (gross domestic product), or $698 billion.

Guild Participates in Creative Rights Caucus 2015 for the House Judiciary Committee

On November 3, the Guild participated in the 2015 Creative Rights Caucus for the House Judiciary Committee in Washington, DC.

Sheila Copps Challenges Designers to Address Global Issues

At the Eeum Design Connects international congress, Copps challenged the design community to effectively address global issues.

ico-D General Assembly Sets an Ambitious Agenda for Design Associations

The ico-D General Assembly 26 took place October 22-23, following Eeum, the International Design Congress in Gwangju, South Korea.

Orphan Works in Canada: Attempting Accountability

In light of how concerned U.S. artists are about legislation addressing orphan works, it’s worth taking a look at how Canada addresses the issue.

Mr. Shems Goes to Washington (well, New York, actually)

Ed Shems, a Guild member, was asked to testify on behalf of illustrators on proposed changes to the First Sale Doctrine.

Guild Member Joseph Caserto Responds to Pratt Crowdsourcing Contest

Pratt Institute alum Joseph Caserto protested the institution’s crowd-sourced mascot design contest.

Guild Protests Federal Agency’s Logo Design Contest

The Guild has sent a letter to the Small Business Administration protesting their crowd-sourced “Seed for the Future” logo design contest.

Guild Joins Organizations in Protesting the “Code of Best Practices in Fair Use”

The Graphic Artists Guild joined a coalition of visual artist associations in a letter addressing concerns with the CAA’s “Code of Best Practices in Fair Use for the Visual Arts.”

Guild Joins CreativeFuture Coalition to Address Piracy

The Graphic Artists Guild has joined CreativeFuture, a coalition of over 350 companies and organizations that seeks to address piracy.

Oh, Dear, Canada: Government Issues Contest for Logo

Canadian designers were startled when their government issued a student contest for the Canada 150 logo.

Graphic Artists Guild Advocacy 2014

In 2014, the Guild has been an active participant in hearings conducted on copyright and intellectual property by the US Copyright Office, and House Judiciary Committee.

Guild Executive Director on Speculative Practices at Icograda Professional Platform Meeting

The Guild attended Icograda’s first-ever Professional Platform Meeting in New York City, attended by representatives from over 14 countries.

Google, Photographers Settle Litigation over Books

A group of photographers, visual artists and affiliated associations have reached a settlement with Google in a lawsuit over copyrighted material in Google Books.

Guild joins Amicus Brief in Support of Comic Creators & Artist

On July 22, the Graphic Artists Guild joined in signing on to an amicus brief on behalf of the heirs of the creators of  “Superman,” Siegel and Shuster, and Jack Kirby.

Guild Member Ed Shems Testifies on Copyrights and First Sale

Guild member Ed Shems spoke on the impact proposed changes to copyright law regarding the first sale doctrine could have on artists at a hearing in front of House Judiciary Committee members on June 2.

Guild Joins Organizations in Amicus Brief in Fine Art Appropriation Case

The Graphic Artists Guild joined other arts organizations in filing an amicus brief in opposition to a brief filed by the Warhol Foundation in Patrick Cariou v. Richard Prince.

The Guild joins ASMP in Protesting Instagram’s Terms of Use

The Guild has joined The American Society of Media Photographers in protesting Instagram’s Terms of Use for image sharing.