WALTHAM FOREST: Labour slammed for 'stealing' blogger's photo (From East London and West Essex Guardian Series)
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WALTHAM FOREST: Labour slammed for 'stealing' blogger's photo
A PROMINENT Walthamstow blogger and Green Party supporter has said he is outraged after the Labour Party used one of his photographs in its election campaign without permission.
The owner of the 'Crap Cycling and Walking in Waltham Forest' website, who operates under the pseudonym Freewheeler, has demanded an apology after his image of a street in Chingford was used in a leaflet distributed to thousands of households in Walthamstow.
Freewheeler, who uses his site to regularly criticise the council's leading Labour and Liberal Democrat coalition for its “poor” treatment of cyclists and pedestrians, said the use of the image amounted to a “blatant infringement” of copyright.
He told the Guardian: “I think it's outrageous that they can lazily steal from my website and then think they can get away with it.
“I’m planning to vote for the Green Party, and as a Green Party supporter I bitterly resent photos on this blog being pilfered by the local Labour Party and misused to attack the Lib Dems.
“They have trimmed my photograph of Westward Road in Chingford in order to attack what they call ‘the Lib Dem failure on parking’.
“But Westward Road is not in a controlled parking zone. My photograph was designed to show how the policy of allowing cars to park on narrow pavements degrades the walking environment and can result in obstruction. It has nothing whatever to do with the Liberal Democrats or their policy on Controlled Parking Zones.
“It was the Labour Party which created these street conditions, long before the party ever formed a coalition with the Lib Dems.”
He added: “It shows that they do read my blog, but I wish they would pay as much attention to the words as they do to the pictures.”
Labour Party Walthamstow campaign worker James Butler said: "We take great care in ensuring that all our photos are taken by ourselves or are copyright free.
"It appears in this instance that one of our design team has made an innocent error which we regret."
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