Kiev.Victor /
1 October 2014Copyright

Fortnum & Mason targeted as parody law changes

UK department store Fortnum & Mason has become a target just hours after changes to copyright law allowing the use of parody came into force.

Animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) has launched a website alerting people to the store's sale of foie gras, a food product made with the liver of a duck or goose that has been force-fed, which PETA says is unethical.

The website, which went live at midnight, is called ‘Force-fed & Murdered’ and is presented in the same style as Fortnum & Mason’s official website, with a turquoise and white colour scheme.

It also contains a Fortnum & Mason logo, with a blood-spattered ampersand replacing the usual sign.

Under the UK law changes, a “limited use” of copyright material is allowed without the permission of the copyright holder, provided it is fair and proportionate.

According to PETA, which has launched other parody sites, the changes bring the UK more in line with the US.

Among the websites the US arm of PETA has created are and

The change to allow parodies was introduced alongside several other copyright exceptions, including allowing people to make personal copies of works for private use and updates to the law on quotations.

Loz Kaye, leader of political party Pirate Party UK, which campaigns for reform to copyright laws, said the changes should be welcome but there was still more to be done to modernise the law.

"The right to parody is fundamentally about the right to free speech. This is an area where copyright has been used to shut down legitimate comment. We are looking forward to more common sense updating of copyright law," Kay said.

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