Donald Trump might get a pass for some of his bombastic language, but copyright is copyright according to Twitter rules. And when you infringe on intellectual property, your post gets taken down, even if you are the president.
Gizmodo is reporting that Donald Trump retweeted a video mocking Democrats’ reaction to the State of the Union using the R.E.M. song “Everybody Hurts” created by a person with the moniker “Carpe Donktum” who won a meme contest put on by InfoWars.
But soon after the video was posted, Twitter took the video down after complaints by the music publisher, Universal Music Publishing Group, as well as R.E.M. band member Mike Mills, who had some choice words for the person who posted the video originally, and for the president, who pinned the video at the top of his Twitter account.
“The a**holes @CarpeDonktum created the meme. #PresidentA**hole retweeted it. Measures have been taken to stop it. @jack you need to get on this.”
The official R.E.M. account also got in on the action, tweeting, World Leader PRETEND!!! Congress, Media–ghost this faker!!! Love, R.E.M.”
Soon after, anyone attempting to view the video got a message which said the video was removed after a complaint from the copyright holder.
— Newsweek (@Newsweek) February 16, 2019
This isn’t the first time that Donald Trump has been accused of using songs or motifs from popular culture without permission of the copyright holder. The band The Rolling Stones complained that Trump was using their songs without permission at his rallies while HBO objected to the use of fonts, images, and taglines from Game of Thrones.
But in these cases, Trump refused to back down, continuing to use the song “You Can’t Always Get What You Want,” despite complaints from the band. The tweet “Sanctions Are Coming” in a Game of Thrones font was left up on the social media platform despite complaints from HBO.
“[We] would prefer our trademark not be misappropriated for political purposes.”
The account Carpe Donktum responded to having his or her tweet removed by complaining that everyone samples music all over social media, so “blah, blah, blah.”
Looks like REM (or their publisher) has filed a takedown notice with Twitter. The video that POTUS tweeted is no longer available. pic.twitter.com/9IzmPkNfHa
— Yashar Ali ???? (@yashar) February 16, 2019
Recently, Twitter founder Jack Dorsey has come under fire for noting on a podcast that Donald Trump is “no worse” than Barack Obama when it comes to social media rhetoric, reports the Inquisitr. Dorsey admitted that because Trump’s tweeting gets so much attention, he is often given the benefit of the doubt while other Twitter users would have their posts removed.