Nasty Spying Agency Lacks Sense (And Sense Of Humor)

0 Shares

The Nasty Spying Agency, aka the National Security Agency, has ordered an online retailer peddling a NSA-parody T-shirt to cease and desist, citing copyright infringement.

Online freedom-product marketer Libertymaniacs.com designed a shirt with a modified NSA logo with the bottom words “United States of America” replaced by “Peeping While You’re Sleeping.” Beneath the logo was printed the words, “The NSA The only part of government that actually listens.”

the_nsa_mens_vneck_tshirt

Nasty Spying Agency spooks weren’t amused. So their lawyers, schooled in convincing judges to void the Constitution so they can illegally spy on Americans but clueless about public relations, crafted an ominous-sounding “cease and desist” letter and mailed it to Libertymaniac’s online sales site Zazzle.com. Zazzle caved and pulled it from its site, explaining:

Unfortunately, it appears that your product, The NSA, contains content that is in conflict with one or more of our acceptable content guidelines. We will be removing this product from the Zazzle Marketplace shortly.

Policy Notes: Design contains an image or text that may infringe on intellectual property rights. We have been contacted by the intellectual property right holder and we will be removing your product from Zazzle’s Marketplace due to infringement claims.

As the T-shirt is clearly a parody it is not a copyright infringement and is free speech protected under the 1st Amendment, according to the American Bar Association. In Campbell v. Acuff-Rose Music, Inc., the U.S. Supreme Court ruled, “parody is the ‘use of some elements of a prior author’s composition to create a new one that, at least in part, comments on that author’s works.’  Id.  at 580. Like other forms of comment or criticism, parody can provide social benefit, ‘by shedding light on an earlier work, and, in the process, creating a new one.’  Id. In other words, parodies can be considered ‘transformative’ works, as opposed to merely ‘superseding’ works. Since  transformative works ‘lie at the heart  of the fair use doctrine’s guarantee of  breathing space within the confines of copyright,’ the more transformative the  parody, the less will be the importance of other § 107 factors that may weigh  against a finding of fair use.  Id. at 579.”

Libertymaniacs owner Dan McCall told journalist Ben Swann,“I tried to visually take the most obvious direction at pointing at them that I could. It was their logo. I just tried to adulterate it a little bit and put a few jabs in there and that will be it. So it wasn’t a huge design coup and it did the job basically.

“Well, on the positive side,” McCall said, “I could get the unenviable honorific of being ‘the 1st man to receive a cease and desist from the National Security Agency for telling a joke.”

McCall has proven undeterred by this egregious attack on free speech. He found another online sales site, Cafepress.com, to sell his NSA-parody shirts.

Before the NSA crackdown the NSA shirts would likely have passed along largely unnoticed in the 29 web pages of shirts McCall was selling. By bringing attention to it, criminal NSA lawyers have ensured McCall will see a spike in sales.

Get yours while they’re hot.

Hat tip: WND.com

Bob Livingston

founder of Personal Liberty Digest™, is an ultra-conservative American author and editor of The Bob Livingston Letter™, in circulation since 1969. Bob has devoted much of his life to research and the quest for truth on a variety of subjects. Bob specializes in health issues such as nutritional supplements and alternatives to drugs, as well as issues of privacy (both personal and financial), asset protection and the preservation of freedom.

Join the Discussion

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.

  • independent thinker

    I do not wear tee shirts but would love to have it on a bumper sticker.

    • Vis Fac

      It probably (the correct spelling not prolly) isn’t yet a bumper sticker but here’s a link fro some nifty ones including Obama Bin Lyin http://www.zazzle.com/obama_bin_lyin_bumper_stickers-128108965966619973

      The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing–Edmund Burke

      A republic is defined as a state in which supreme power is held by the people and their elected representatives, and which has an elected or nominated president…

      Our republic no longer exists because we have an omnipotent self centered clown in the Oval office who is as unconstitutional as anyone can be. Anyone believing we still live in a republic had best take notice of what OUR elected officials are doing WITHOUT OUR consent. Our republic no longer exists because we the the people no longer have power!

      Benjamin Franklin once said … A democracy can be best described as two wolves and a sheep deciding what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.”

      Our Republic that allows for a well armed sheep to contest the vote!”
      shall soon be a fond memory for our rubber stamp liberally controlled congress is eagerly waiting to disarm us.

      Libertas inaestimabilis res est

      Semper-Fi

  • Ldedwards

    Where do I get one?

  • Paul

    Just placed my order on cafepress! It will go great with my “Infidel” ball cap.

  • FreedomFighter

    Just the thought that it is a copyright infringement scares the snot out of me.

    “United States of America” replaced by “Peeping While You’re Sleeping.” Beneath the logo was printed the words, “The NSA The only part of government that actually listens.”

    Makes you think real hard when you realize they copyrighted that.
    Laus DeoSemper FI

  • marcdepiolenc

    I very much doubt that the emblem of a US government agency can be protected by copyright in any case.

  • Freespirit

    Not-with-standing that ALL LAWS are ABROGATIONS of Natural rights, how can there be “Copyright Infringement” when the Government/ PEOPLE( In theory) are the owners? Is not any individual or company part of “the People”? another example of the INSANITY and CONTRADICTION of Government ownership. In TRUTH Government has NO NATURAL RIGHT to own anything. Natural rights belong ONLY to individuals.

  • Eric Atkinson

    I don’t buy things online, which is unfortunate in a way because I’d have to track down a copy of this shirt if I did. It would make a great gift item for a few people I know.
    Although I know it won’t really do any good, I was compelled to send zazzle.com’s customer service department an email reminding them that parodies are perfectly legal under U.S. law and expressing my regret both at their lost sales and that they appear, because of the decision to discontinue the item, to be de facto siding with ‘big brother’ and endorsing both an out-of-control government organization and the abuses it is commiting.
    Like I said, I know it won’t do any good, and I don’t buy things online anyway, but it made me feel better.

    • Vis Fac

      You don’t think copies of this will be available in avenues of commerce? Just like dope or other contraband these will be out there.

      The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing–Edmund Burke

      A republic is defined as a state in which supreme power is held by the people and their elected representatives, and which has an elected or nominated president…

      Our republic no longer exists because we have an omnipotent self centered clown in the Oval office who is as unconstitutional as anyone can be. Anyone believing we still live in a republic had best take notice of what OUR elected officials are doing WITHOUT OUR consent. Our republic no longer exists because the people no longer have power!

      Benjamin Franklin once said … A democracy can be best described as two wolves and a sheep deciding what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.”

      Our Republic that allows for a well armed sheep to contest the vote!”
      shall soon be a fond memory for our rubber stamp liberally controlled congress is eagerly waiting to disarm us.

      Libertas inaestimabilis res est

      Semper-Fi

  • dan

    Show me the copyright patent….

    • vicki

      They can’t. By definition those are public domain cause we paid for them.

    • Robert Messmer

      Because of the silly claim that it is copyrighted, I pulled up the Nasty Spying Agency’s official website and found no copyright notice on the emblem. I am not a lawyer but thought that if something is copyrighted that you had to indicate it with the copyright symbol. So what does this do for all the F. B. I. (Female Body Inspector) products out there?

  • spacegasp

    <————– Snoop on this, you lifeless ghouls.

  • Vis Fac

    More usurpation of first amendment rights just as was done the the rodeo clown in an ODUMBO MASK . How dare you make fun of we the almighty (if even in our own minds) gods. We’ll make sure you attend sensitivity training classes and shut your business down. Do as we say not as we do!

    The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing–Edmund Burke

    A republic is defined as a state in which supreme power is held by the people
    and their elected representatives, and which has an elected or nominated president…

    Our republic no longer exists because we have an omnipotent self centered clown in the Oval office who is as unconstitutional as anyone can be. Anyone believing we still live in a republic had best take notice of what OUR elected officials are doing WITHOUT OUR consent. Our republic no longer exists because the people no longer have power!

    Benjamin Franklin once said … A democracy can be best described as two wolves and a sheep deciding what to have for lunch. Liberty is a well-armed lamb contesting the vote.”

    Our Republic that allows for a well armed sheep to contest the vote!”
    shall soon be a fond memory for our rubber stamp liberally controlled congress
    is eagerly waiting to disarm us.

    Libertas inaestimabilis res est

    Semper-Fi

  • vicki

    It is also worth noting that the NSA emblem and all associated marks etc are by definition in the public domain because WE paid for them.