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Hotel Accidentally Uses GTA5 Screenshots To Promote Los Angeles

The Hotel Figueroa in downtown Los Angeles has paid an unintended compliment to Rockstar Games. Recently, the hotel’s website posted of picture of what they thought was a picture of downtown Los Angeles, but the photo of the city skyline in question was actually a screenshot of downtown Los Santos, the setting of Grand Theft Auto 5.

Eagle-eyed Reddit user Doupler spotted the picture on the Hotel Figueroa’s website and quickly posted a screenshot to the Grand Theft Auto 5 subreddit. The actual source of the pic appears to be taken from a fan-made Grand Theft Auto Wikia page.

The Hotel Figueroa is no stranger to the video game world, sitting in the middle of downtown Los Angeles, the hotel is often draped in artful video game advertisements during E3. Most recently, Witcher 3 developer Projekt CD Red used the hotel to advertise its upcoming card game, Gwent.

It is unclear if the screenshot was posted accidentally, or was snuck in by a web developer with a sense of humour. Still, if the shot had been taken while using the photorealism mod, it’s possible the screenshot would have never been seen as a fake.

While the mistakenly posted screenshot will make many people chuckle, it does highlight a problem with companies using images or art without properly crediting the source. Ford was recently called out for its blatant theft of Firewatch art that was used in one of its dealership’s advertisements, while the dinosaur hunting first-person shooter Orion was just recently pulled off of Steam after Activision claimed copyright infringement over some of the game’s gun-designs being too similar to ones in Black Ops 3. Even Rockstar has been accused of similar appropriation, Lindsay Lohan and the publisher are currently in a legal battle over the supposed use of her likeness in the game.

While the hotel has yet to comment on the mistaken posting, the photo has since been replaced on the company’s website with an actual photo of Los Angeles. While this is somewhat embarrassing for the Figueroa, the hotel staff can at least take comfort in the fact that the screenshot wasn’t taken from the Minecraft recreation of Los Santos.

Should companies, and the web at large, be held more accountable for using independent artwork without giving proper credit to the artist?

Grand Theft Auto 5 is available for PS4, Xbox One, and PC.

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