Infowars has settled the Pepe the Frog lawsuit with creator Matt Furie for a “licensing fee” of just $15,000, a tiny amount considering Furie’s lawyers had demanded over $2 million in damages.
Last year, Furie alleged that Infowars was responsible for copyright violation over a stylized poster sold on the Infowars website created by a third party which featured a small depiction of the cartoon frog that became a mascot for the Trump campaign during 2016.
The judge in the case ruled that Furie wouldn’t be expected to obtain anything more than $14,000 in legal fees, so Furie’s lawyers sought a settlement of just $15,000.
Although the media attempted to hype the case by accusing Alex Jones of contributing to the notion of the Pepe meme as a symbol of white supremacy, the cartoon frog was actually just a small part of the original poster, which featured numerous other iconic images linked to the 2016 Trump campaign.
The corporate press will undoubtedly frame this as a victory for Furie. It wasn’t. The result clearly represents a strategic victory for Alex Jones.
A Pepe the Frog copyright infringement claim filed against Infowars will proceed to trial, a California federal judge ruled Thursday after being unconvinced by motions argued by either side. Matt Furie, who created the cartoon frog that became an internet meme and was co-opted by the far right, sued InfoWars for selling a poster of Pepe the Frog depicted alongside Milo Yiannopoulos, InfoWars founder Alex Jones and President Donald Trump. The posters sold for $29.95 apiece and generated gross revenues of over $31,000, the judge’s ruling said.
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