Axl Rose, the famously temperamental singer of Guns N’ Roses has asked Google to remove ‘from the internet ‘a very unflattering 2010 photo of him, nicknamed “Fat Axl” which lead to an onslaught of online memes. Think ‘Welcome to the Bakery’ instead of ‘Welcome to the jungle.’
Issuing a Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DMCA) is common practice, used to protect copyright owners, and thousands are sent to Google every day. ‘ Fat shaming’ issues aside, it has far-reaching legal implications.
Actually,the was taken by Boris Minkevich of the Winnipeg Free Press during a January 2010 Guns N’ Roses performance in Winnipeg, Canada. You would think it’s a clear cut case of the photographer owning the photo but Axl’s camp disagrees, saying that all professional photographers at Axl Rose performances must sign a release which cedes copyright of their photographs to Rose.
Google has yet to respond.