Now, via TMZ, comes word that the Miss USA Pageant has made a copyright claim of its own, objecting to the use of footage it apparently owns in the same NOM ad:
The Miss Universe Organization just told us they've fired off a cease and desist letter to the National Organization for Marriage -- after NOM used footage from the Miss USA 2009 pageant in an anti-gay marriage commercial.The footage in question appears to be about 6 seconds at the beginning of the ad, and consists of Prejean's now-famous statement: "I believe that a marriage should be between a man and a woman. No offense to anybody out there..."
The commercial -- which is currently still playing on NOM's website -- uses Carrie Prejean's pageant response to the gay marriage question as a selling point for the ad.
This doesn't mean the MUO is taking sides on the issue -- just saying NOM can't use the copyrighted material to promote their agenda.
Fair use? I sure think so. The ad comments directly on the pageant contestant's answer -- which has become a significant national controversy -- and is very brief. The Miss Universe organization -- a joint venture between Donald Trump and NBC Universal -- may not like its footage to be used for partisan purposes, but the fair use doctrine permits such uses -- whether they like it or not.