Hipsters can be a weird breed. They’re the pinnacle of non-conformism, and prove it by all conforming to an easily recognizable style.
This was a point that was made by Gideon Lichfield in an MIT Technology Review article released last month. According to Lichfield, the article got the attention of a reader who noticed the picture at the top of the article and subsequently recognized himself.
“We promptly got a furious email from a man who said he was the guy in the photo that ran with the story,” tweeted Lichfield. “He accused us of slandering him, presumably by implying he was a hipster, and of using the pic without his permission. (He wasn’t too complimentary about the story, either.)
“Now, as far as I know, calling someone a hipster isn’t slander, no matter how much they may hate it. Still, we would never use a picture without the proper license or model release. It was a stock photo from Getty Images. So we checked the license,” tweeted Lichfield.
Getty does have some rules about using their photos. As Lichfield points out, Getty notes that if you’re using one of their models as a subject for articles about STD’s then you must highlight the fact that the person in the picture is merely a model and not an example of a carrier of an STD.
As calling someone a “hipster” is not necessarily an insult, MIT Tech Review didn’t think they were violating any of the policies despite the angry reader’s protests.
To be on the safe side, Lichfield contacted Getty to make sure implying someone was a hipster wasn’t breaching their rules. Hilariously, Getty checked the model’s release and found that the angry reader wasn’t even the guy in the picture.
“Getty checked the model release, and gave us the news: The guy who complained wasn’t even the guy in the picture. He’d misidentified himself,” tweeted Lichfield. “All of which just proves the story we ran: Hipsters look so much alike that they can’t even tell themselves apart from each other.”
Let’s break this down. A hipster came across an article talking about how all the non-conformist hipsters conform to a singular style. The hipster saw a photo of another hipster within the article, and due to being so similar to the model thanks to the conforming hipsters do, ended up believing he was the guy in the photo. In his anger, he lashed out that he would be grouped in with hipsters, only to find out he’s not the guy in the photo after all, and only thought so because hipsters all look alike.
Now that’s comedy.