Gigi Hadid has had it. The model is leading a crusade against the paparazzi, and with good reason. But that crusade has come at a cost. She is now being sued over an Instagram post of...herself.
According to People, Hadid’s feud began when she reposted a now-deleted paparazzi image of herself on her Instagram account. It was a simple, “Hi! Look at me doing my thing!” photo that celebs are wont to post. Hadid later claimed she found the uncredited photo on Twitter. The next day, she pulled the shot down and posted a text-only image, informing her 43.8 million followers that she was being “legally pursued” for posting the copyrighted image.
“The photo is by a Paparazzi & is of me on the street outside an event last week,” Hadid explains. “I posed/smiled for the photo because I understand that this is part of my job,” she wrote, adding that she understands that such events are expected to bring out the press, and empathizes with paparazzi photographers who need to earn a living.
But Hadid is clearly upset at being sued for posting the photo, writing that “for someone to take a situation where I was trying to be open, and sue me for a photo I FOUND ON TWITTER (with no photographer’s name on the image), for a photo he has already been paid for my whatever outlet put it online (!!!), is absurd.”
Unfortunately, if the image is copyrighted by the photographer, paparazzi or not, it subject to the same laws that protect artists from having their work stolen. Celebs and regular folks: it’s not safe to post photos you didn’t take yourself on your social media accounts. Yes, even if they are of you.
Hadid also goes on to draw a distinction between public events and her privacy. “Most circumstances [in which I am photographed] are not this way, i.e. leaving my apartment, or anytime. I feel that my privacy is being unreasonably intruded upon, doing everyday things feel harder to face.” She goes on to describe the fear she faces from the photographers, writing that they “drive dangerously close and extremely recklessly; they put the general public in danger in pursuit of a photo.”
It’s no secret that celebs can’t stand the paps. Their methods verge on criminal stalking, dangerous car chases, and deeply invasive photographs of private moments. Addressing the paps directly, Hadid wrote, “I understand that this is how you make your living, and I respect that this is something I must accept with my job. But there is a line.” You can read her full statement below.