Who’s disrespecting artistry now?

Earlier this year, Garbage frontwoman Shirley Manson wrote an open letter to Kanye West, claiming that he was “disrespecting artistry” by interrupting Beck at the Grammys.

Now, Pat Pope, a former photographer for Garbage, is giving Manson and company a taste of their own medicine. Pope received an email from Garbage’s management company asking to use some of his photos in a planned book about the band. However, the company said it could only offer “proper credit” because the budget is “financially limited” — thinly coded language suggesting that he would not be paid.

This is a familiar claim by any creative professional who has been told there isn’t room in the budget for their services, which makes Pope’s open letter (on his Facebook page) so resonant.

“It seems to me that the person who writes down “zero for photos” today,” Pope writes, “is the same person who will write down “zero for music” tomorrow because they don’t respect the “content providers”.”

Garbage has responded with a message on their own Facebook page. Here’s an excerpt:

“Our book is not intended as a profit generating venture but something beautiful to create and present directly to our fans as a celebration of our music and the image-makers who we have been lucky enough to work with over the span of a twenty-year career…

Before we scrapped the idea of producing the book entirely, we decided instead that we would take a leaf out of Amanda Palmer’s book “The Power of Asking” and simply ask the photographers themselves whether they wanted to be included in our book or not. Any refusal of permission would be respectfully accepted and no further questions asked .”



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