Facebook Flap Over Duggar House Photos Sparks Lawsuit

Facebook Flap Over Duggar House Photos Sparks Lawsuit
A screenshot from the Duggar property listing on Realtor.com featuring a photo taken by Colby Clark.

A photographer filed a lawsuit in Washington County Circuit Court alleging that a real estate agent defamed him on Facebook.

Colby Clark, who is also a real estate agent, filed the lawsuit through his attorney, Erik Danielson of Fayetteville, against real estate agent April Hamm. She hired Clark in the spring to shoot photographs and video of a 4,821-SF home in Springdale owned by reality television stars Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar.

The listing attracted national media attention, and some articles made use of Clark’s photographs. In his suit, Clark said he informed the publications that Hamm did not have permission to distribute the photographs, which were taken for marketing, not news stories.

The lawsuit said Hamm composed a Facebook post in May describing Clark as a “sneaky conman” and that she owned the photographs and could do what she wanted with them. Hamm told Whispers she paid Clark for his work.

The lawsuit quoted Hamm’s post: “I’m just glad who he is [is] out there! Everyone knows now and has the choice to use him or not. I guarantee realtors won’t want [to] use him.”

Hamm told Whispers she had not seen the lawsuit and referred all questions to her attorney, Jason Bramlett of Friday Eldredge & Clark in Fayetteville.

The lawsuit identified Hamm as working with Keller Williams Market Pro Realty, but Hamm said she was working independently on the Duggar home, which is listed for sale at $1.4 million.

The Duggars acquired the property for $230,000 in 2014.

Clark said the public post was seen by many and included derogatory comments from other posters. He is asking for punitive damages, attorney fees and a public apology, as well as removal of the Facebook post.