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Photographer Sues Porno Company for Putting Her Picture, at Age 14, On their DVD Cover

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British photographer, Lara Jade Coton, has been awarded $130,000 after suing a US-based porno company when she’d found out they’d used an image of her from the internet, taken at age 14, on the cover of its erotic DVDs.

Apparently the porno co., TXF Films of Texas, had found the picture of her, wearing a magician’s top-hat, on a social networking photography site and decided to plaster it on on their “sexually explicit film Body Magic without her permission.” No word on whether she’d ‘said she was 18′ on her profile there.

Daily Mail: During the three-year legal battle, Miss Coton told of her disgust of how the image was used: ‘I was absolutely horrified to see my work and my own picture being used on that kind of movie. It’s just appalling.’

When Coton asked the company’s president, Bob Burge, to remove the image, he ridiculed her over email, writing ‘Actually, removing your image will help improve the sale of the DVD,’ and acused her of attempting to “perpetuate some kind of scam.” It seems he didn’t consider mining the blogosphere for free photography its own form of scamming, age of the model notwithstanding.

While this case did end up awarding the photographer for both her humiliation and her labor (often, for an artist, inseparable anyway — especially these days) one has to wonder how many more DVD covers with unpaid 14-year-old girls are floating around out there. But besides that, really, shouldn’t we all demand to be paid  for our artistic output, our user-created content, and our social networking labor? And when it comes to producing content for everyone to see free of charge, why do we often seem so eager?

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