Pepe the Frog creator steps up fight in copyright battle against 'hate-filled' alt-right appropriation

Jon Sharman
Circulating Pepe the Frog memes could land social media users with a copyright notice

The creator of Pepe the Frog has stepped up his fight against far-right activists who appropriated the cartoon character as a meme.

Matt Furie vowed to "aggressively enforce his intellectual property" after the character he created for a comic strip was plastered across social media and even merchandise.

It was used particularly by fans of US President Donald Trump as he fought his election campaign.

His lawyers, acting pro bono, have moved against copyright violators and last month won a victory against an author who used Pepe in a children's book that contained messages the artist said espoused "racist, Islamophobic and hate-filled themes".

They have moved on to far-right social media influencers and online retailers, Vice reported, targeting their merchandise by filing copyright "take-down" notices, .

One of Mr Furie's lawyers, Louis Tompros, told the website: "We're doing what we think is the right thing. As we have more and more of these actions where we're successfully able to remove misuse of the Pepe image and character, they'll build upon each other.

"I'm hopeful we'll reach a place where this stops, where the alt-right realizes it's too much trouble dealing with us to be misappropriating this character and they move on."