Brian Duffy, the former staff cartoonist for the Des Moines Register who was laid-off after spending 25 years on the front page of the paper, is fighting his former employer to get back his original drawings.
“They have the originals all sitting in my old office back at the Des Moines Register,” Duffy told KCCI in Des Moines.
When Duffy was told that his job was being eliminated as part of a nation-wide series of layoffs instituted by parent company Gannett, he was escorted out of the newspaper’s building and not allowed to return to collect his personal belongings.
“It’s not about withholding things from Brian. The Des Moines Register paid him for his very excellent work, but we hold the copyright for the work our staff produces,” Register editor Carolyn Washburn said in a statement.
Duffy disagrees with her assessment.
“All along, it has been a history of the cartoon was in essence the property of the cartoonist,” said Duffy.
View a video of the story here.