Russell Simmons has been very busy fighting for many causes related to the black community. He’s using his celebrity to raise awareness regarding the deaths of Eric Garner and Michael Brown. He’s been very active in the fight against drugs and gangs in Chicago and he recently had a heated debate with conservative talk show host Bill O’Reilly about violence, drugs, and the industrial prison complex.
While he was fighting for several causes he was dealing with his own dilemmas. Earlier this year, Simmons was sued by photographer Armen Djerrahian for posting photos featuring Rick Ross on his very popular news site, Global Grind. After being served cease and desist , Simmons did not comply with the demands of the photographer.
According to TheJasmineBRAND.com, Djerrahian has worked with everyone from Jay-Z, 50 Cent to Kanye West … along with having his work featured in XXL, Vibe and many other media outlets.
In federal documentation, Djerrahian explained that he photographed rapper Rick Ross for XXL magazine. The images show the rapper holding his hand in the shape of a gun to his head. He had the image copyrighted and it is well known in the industry. He accused Simmons and his website of using his Rick Ross image without permissions and he claims that they refused to take it down once he contacted them about the alleged copyright infringement. He reportedly filed the suit demanding no less than 50k and an injunction against Simmons from using ANY of his photos in the future.
If Simmons was so adamant about not meeting the demands of the photographer, we wonder why he had a change of heart? Maybe he was over the whole ordeal and wanted it to come to a close Maybe Simmons really was guilty in illegally using the photographer’s photos and is owning up to his mistake?
Either way, this is Russell Simmons we’re talking about. Money is likely not an object to him, so if the allegations are true about him using the photo, why didn’t he ask for permission?
What are your thoughts?