Kanye West said that if a paparazzi really wants a picture of him, that wouldn’t be totally for free and paparazzi must pay for it. During a run-in with photographers in Miami, Florida, over the weekend, the “Jesus Walks” rapper stated that he wants to be compensated for any use of his image by paparazzi.
According to TMZ, the incident happened on Saturday, Jan. 22, when Ye was approached by a photographer who wanted to take a few photos and ask a few questions. The 44-year-old, on the other hand, instantly informed the reporter that he was not in the mood to be photographed.
After a few moments, the Chicago native doubled back to explain why he doesn’t want any of his pictures taken.
“Mark my words, you’re going to give me a percentage,” Ye stated as he was leaving the airport. When the voice behind the camera said, “I want your percentage,” Ye fired back, stating, “Right now, y’all get to shoot us without having to pay. I’mma change that.”
He continued, “I’m not saying it in a negative way. It’s just like, right now, it’s just really one-sided. You guys can follow us, you guys can stand [outside] a hotel at any given time — you don’t give us any percentage of what you’re making off of us, off of our kids, and I’m gonna change that.”
Because he owns his image, the “All Falls Down” emcee argued that he should be entitled to a certain percentage of the gains from his images. When the speaker responded that without paparazzi, there would be no stories of celebrities, Ye rebutted that it didn’t help both sides.
“We all gotta make money together. … It’s more people in the world. … There’s more money in the world. It can’t be a one-sided thing,” he explained. “Look, if I’m just with my kids, I say I don’t want you to shoot me, then that’s just something y’all gotta respect. … We can get that money together, but we gotta have a conversation.”
Ye, who recently had a run-in with a 40-year-old autograph-seeker, also stressed that he was fully cognizant of the rules in place that enable his images to be taken so long as it is done in a public environment. “I’m going to make sure we receive our rights,” the rapper said to reporters, before adding, “We’re real people, too.”
The rapper reassured the reporter that there was no bad blood. “I respect your job. My dad was a photographer at a newspaper. … I love paparazzi,” he said. “But as Americans, we gotta respect each other. We gotta bring the pride back to this country.”