Crosshairs on Copyright: Powderkeg Allegedly Targets August Image’s Intellectual Property

Screenshot-2024-04-25-131414-300x170A legal dispute has arisen between Plaintiff August Image, LLC, a New York-based company representing over 100 contemporary photographers globally, and Indy Founders LLC, operating as Powderkeg, an Indiana-based digital community serving startups and professionals. The lawsuit alleges copyright infringement regarding a professional photograph taken by renowned photographer Peter Yang.

August Image, LLC, headquartered in New York City, specializes in representing creative photographers worldwide. Its collection encompasses various genres which are available for licensing, and the company is known for its commitment to customer satisfaction and meticulous acquisition of image rights.

Powderkeg, based in Indianapolis, Indiana, supports startups and professionals across the United States through its digital community. It provides resources and networking opportunities for over 10,000 active members nationwide.

The lawsuit centers on a professional photograph titled “AU1879127,” captured by photographer Peter Yang. Court documents state that while Mr. Yang holds the copyright, Plaintiff August Image, LLC serves as the exclusive administrator and publisher of the copyright for the photograph.

Plaintiff alleges that Powderkeg displayed and published the copyrighted photograph on its platforms without authorization, despite being notified of the unauthorized use. If the court determines that infringement occurred, it would mean that Plaintiff’s exclusive rights under the Copyright Act were willfully violated.

In response, Plaintiff has initiated legal proceedings against Indy Founders LLC, seeking various forms of relief, including a declaration of copyright infringement and willfulness, compensation for damages, reimbursement of legal costs, prejudgment interest, and a permanent injunction restraining Powderkeg from further infringing activities.

The case has been assigned to Judge Sarah Evans Barker and Magistrate Judge M. Kendra Klump in the U.S. District Court of Southern Indiana, and assigned Case No. 1:24-cv-00617.


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