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Lady Liberty Stamp Mistake Costs USPS $3.5 Million

Lady Liberty Stamp Mistake Costs USPS $3.5 Million
A replica of the Statue of Liberty is pictured in front of the New York-New York Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada, in this July 6, 2007, file photo. (Steve Marcus/Las Vegas Sun/Reuters/File)

By    |   Tuesday, 03 July 2018 06:01 PM EDT

The Lady Liberty forever stamp is costing the U.S. Postal Service more than $3.5 million in royalties to a sculptor whose work was mistakenly reproduced on the stamp, a federal claims court ruled last week.

Judge Eric Bruggink ruled the Postal Service must pay sculptor Robert S. Davidson damages of more than $3.5 million by July 27, Fortune magazine reported.

Davidson sued the Postal Service in 2013, claiming the stamp reproduced his work without permission. He created a replica of the Statue of Liberty that appears at the New York-New York Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas.

"We are satisfied that plaintiff succeeded in making the statue his own creation, particularly the face,” Bruggink wrote in his ruling, according to Fortune. "A comparison of the two faces unmistakably shows that they are different. … Mr. Davidson’s statue, although invoking an existing world-famous statue, is an original, creative work, and as such is the subject of a valid copyright registration."

The USPS used a Getty Images photo of Davidson's sculpture for its stamp without realizing it wasn't the original Statue of Liberty, Gizmodo reported.

The mix-up was realized in 2011, but the Postal Service continued to sell the stamps.

A USPS spokesman said the agency "would have selected this photograph anyway," The Washington Post reported in 2013, noting that the agency was looking for a more distinctive image from previous stamps featuring the statue.

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TheWire
The U.S. Postal Service was ordered to pay more than $3.5 million in royalties after it mistakenly used a Las Vegas sculpture as a model for its Lady Liberty stamp rather than the original symbol of democracy.
lady, liberty, stamp, mistake, usps
291
2018-01-03
Tuesday, 03 July 2018 06:01 PM
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