01.02.2023 Featured Lagos Airport Puts Logo on Photographer’s Copyrighted Images for Promotions

Published 1st Feb, 2023

By Sodeeq Atanda

Famuyiwa Oyebola, a professional photographer, has accused Muritala Muhammad Airport 2, operated by Bi-Courtney Aviation Services Ltd., of downloading his copyrighted images and using them without his permission.

The artist, who is the lead creative at ArtbyOye, told FIJ that the local airport tinkered with some of his photo works and uploaded it on its Instagram page in April 2022 for promotions.

He said immediately the upload came to his notice on Instagram, he was surprised and wondered why the company deliberately imprinted their logo on it for public consumption.

READ ALSO: 1.7m Opioid Pills Found in Indomie Packs at Lagos Airport

“I saw some of my images on MMA2Bicourtney’s Instagram handle in April 2022. I was like ‘What could they be doing with my works?'” The Canada-based Nigerian explained to FIJ.

He said he messaged the company on Instagram, calling its attention to the fact that he owns the copyright of the aerial photographs.

Aerial photograph of Kalambaina roundabout
Aerial photograph of Kalambaina roundabout
Aerial image of Sokoto city
Aerial image of Sokoto city

“As I am sure the images are mine, I sent a dozen of messages to the company on their Instagram page, calling their attention to the fact that I am the copyright owner of those images,” said Oyebola.

Oyebola's unreplied messages to the company about the stolen images
Oyebola’s unreplied messages to the company

“I expected them to reply my messages, but they did not. I am, however, sure they read my messages.

“I told them to pay N450,000, the usage fee for the images. The usage fee is not the same as the infringement on my intellectual property rights guaranteed by law in Nigeria.”

According to Oyebola, the aerial images were shot at different locations in Nigeria.

“I embarked on trips to different places to get my pictures in their original form. Two of the pictures were in Sokoto: Kalambaina Roundabout, Sokoto. The third is from Molete, Ibadan, Oyo State.

An aerial image of Molete, Ibadan.
An aerial image of Molete, Ibadan.

“After all my efforts, all Bicourtney could do was to effortlessly pick the first two from my dedicated website and professional Instagram account. Instead of responding to my Instagram direct messages, the company deleted tweets after some hours. However, the deed had been done.”

Speaking on the effect of the company’s action on his business, the artist said, “These images are highly prized. I am a professional artist. I have my products in different public and private corporations and I have a global network of customers.

“Muritala Muhammad Airport 2 and its operators have jeopardised my means of livelihood.

“If a customer turns up for any of those photographs in the near future, it means I won’t be able to sell it because the airport not only downloaded it but also put its mark on it as if I sold it to them”

READ ALSO: EXPOSED: Lagos Airport Officer Who Doesn’t Stamp Dubai-Bound Passports Unless You Bribe Him

FIJ observed that the airport put its logo and other personal identifiers on the images, asking its followers, “Can you guess where this beautiful view is located in Nigeria?”

The company did not answer FIJ’s phone call on Monday and has also not responded to an email sent on the same day.

Published 1st Feb, 2023

By Sodeeq Atanda


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