“Humans of New York” creator Brandon Stanton, seen here in 2013, criticized an Indian version of the blog for suing his rival – Copyright AFP/File STAN HONDA
The creator of “Humans of New York” criticized an Indian version of the blog for suing a rival, accusing it of unreasonably monetizing its subjects’ stories.
Brandon Stanton started “Humans of New York” in 2010, sharing interviews with city residents alongside their photos.
It was a runaway success and three years later, Karishma Mehta launched ‘Humans of Bombay’ in her hometown of Mumbai, which now has 2.7 million followers on Instagram.
This month, Mehta filed a copyright infringement complaint against the “People of India” Instagram account, claiming it had “replicated a large number of images and videos” from his page.
The case sparked a storm on social media, with many people berating Mehta, including Stanton.
“I’ve stayed quiet about the appropriation of my work because I think @HumansOfBombay shares important stories, even though they’ve monetized way beyond anything I would feel comfortable doing on HONY” , Stanton wrote Saturday on X, formerly Twitter.
“But you can’t sue people for what I’ve forgiven you for.”
And in an apparent attack on Mehta – who receives compensation for topics appearing on his page – Stanton said he admired the “Humans of Amsterdam” project because its creator doesn’t treat people’s stories as “the ‘front -end” of a company”.
In response, Humans of Bombay said the lawsuit was about content theft by its rival.
“Perhaps before you embarked on this matter, you should have equipped yourself with information about the case,” he said in a statement published on X.
“HOB is all about the power of storytelling,” he adds. “But it must be done honestly and ethically.”