News & Analysis as of

Celebrities

Cleveland Brewery’s Use of His Likeness Not Very Well Liked by Lebron James

by Miles & Stockbridge P.C. on

Yesterday, it was reported by the Bleacher Report that Cleveland Cavaliers basketball star, Lebron James, was displeased with the fact that a brewer located in the Cleveland, Ohio area, Great Lakes Brewing Company may have...more

Looking For A Deceased Celebrity’s Successor-In-Interest? The Secretary Of State Has An Answer

by Allen Matkins on

The California Secretary of State’s office is the repository for a vast a disparate number of filings. Few people, for example, may be aware that they may register with the Secretary of State’s office as a...more

Is Marilyn Monroe Too Generic to Be Registered as a Trademark?

by Weintraub Tobin on

I’ve written on numerous occasions in the past about celebrities who registered their own names as trademarks with the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Just the other week, I wrote about how UFC superstar Conor...more

Just Like You and Me: Difficulties with Celebrity Trademark Applications

Under U.S. trademark law, any person (including a celebrity) can obtain a trademark registration for their name if they can establish that the public recognizes the name as a source identifier for certain products or...more

Bieber, Beer, and… Protective Orders

by Butler Snow LLP on

On February 8, 2017, pop star Justin Bieber was scheduled to be deposed in Santa Monica, California. Lawyers traveled from Nashville to California for the deposition, but upon arrival they were informed Bieber was too ill to...more

Top Four Estate Disputes from 2016

by LeClairRyan on

With the end of 2016 upon us, now is a fitting time to look back at some of the top estate disputes from this past year. 2016 was a typical year in that, unsurprisingly, people continued to die and families continued to fight...more

Donald Trump is on to Something

by Winthrop & Weinstine, P.A. on

Some credit Donald Trump’s win to his savvy social media presence, including tweeting. He reached millions of voters and caught the nation’s attention with his tweets. The courts are now recognizing this phenomenon....more

Celebrity Brands: The Line Between Fair Use and Infringement

by Jaburg Wilk on

All brand owners are faced with difficult decisions regarding how aggressively to police their brands. The decision is particularly difficult when the unauthorized use is by a loyal customer or fan. While some traditional...more

Some Like It Infringed? Monroe Estate Continues Intellectual Property Battles Despite Lack of Publicity Rights

On Wednesday, November 9, 2016 the estate of Marilyn Monroe filed a complaint in the Southern District of New York against Fashion Central. The Monroe Estate claims that Fashion Central infringes its intellectual property...more

EU Retail News – November 2016

by Bryan Cave on

Celebrity Influence - The potential UK retail decline following Brexit - The recent announcement of Robert De Niro’s planned luxury boutique hotel in Covent Garden has turned fresh attention to the continuing trend of...more

Depositions of the Stars

by Planet Depos, LLC on

Celebrities are often involved in legal matters. From copyright infringement, money claims, crazed fans, and burglary, it’s safe to say that as a celebrity, one should always have a strong legal team! Thanks to the internet,...more

Top Privacy Cases of 2016: Midyear Report

by Snell & Wilmer on

Law360, New York (July 1, 2016, 12:12 PM ET) -- The U.S. Supreme Court made a big splash this year establishing a murky threshold for standing that has already been widely cited by both sides of the bar, while consumers...more

“Gossip Cop” Held To Willfully Infringe Copyrighted Photos

In BWP Media USA v. Gossip Cop Media, a case sure to bring cheer to paparazzi and tabloid publishers everywhere, a judge in the Southern District of New York has found after a bench trial that a gossip website willfully...more

Advertising Law - July 2016 #2

VW Will Pay $14.7B in Largest FTC False Ad Suit - Volkswagen made a $14.7 billion deal with the Federal Trade Commission, the Department of Justice, and the California Attorney General over charges that the auto...more

Airbnb Faces Suit for Using Julia Child’s Name in a Contest

by Kelley Drye & Warren LLP on

Earlier this year, Airbnb ran a contest in which one winner could “come stay in the former home of Julia Child.” The company advertised that entrants could imagine themselves “walking the halls of Julia Child’s former home,”...more

Till Death Do Us Part? How to Deal With Celebrity Publicity Rights When That Celebrity Passes

by Reed Smith on

The tragic death of renowned recording artist Prince left many reminiscing about his meticulously crafted public image. In life, the law allowed Prince to control the commercial exploitations of his image.  At death, however,...more

Private Bankrolling of Defamation and Privacy Suits

by LeClairRyan on

The New York Times recently reported that famed Silicon Valley investor and PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel has been secretly bankrolling “Hulk Hogan’s” (real name Terry Bollea) invasion of privacy suit against Gawker Media....more

Privacy in a Connected World: The Celebrity Threesome Injunction

by Reed Smith on

In January, a celebrity applied for an injunction against an English tabloid newspaper that wished to publish an article about a three-way sexual encounter. This case subsequently went all the way to the Supreme Court, and in...more

Arsenio Hall Files Defamation Suit Against Sinead O’Connor in Response to Her Facebook Post about Prince’s Death

by Akin Gump - Excubitor on

On May 5, 2016, Arsenio Hall sued Sinead O’Connor for defamation, alleging that O’Connor falsely accused Hall of “supplying illegal ‘hard drugs’ ‘over the decades’ to the recently deceased musical artist, Prince, and of...more

Sign O’ the Times: the Right of Publicity Comes to Minnesota

by Dorsey & Whitney LLP on

The ability to control the use of one’s name, likeness, voice, and other personal attributes is known as the right of publicity. Unlike trademarks, patents, and copyrights, which are types of intellectual property governed...more

Celebrity Trademark Watch: Beyoncé Sues Feyoncé and Fame is the Name of the Game

Beyoncé Giselle Knowles-Carter, known to most as simply Beyoncé, and as “Bey” to those who like to pretend they know her, is about as famous as one can be. She transitioned from the acclaimed group “Destiny’s Child” to...more

EU Retail News - April 2016

by Bryan Cave on

Welcome to the first issue of EU Retail News written by members of the Retail Team at Bryan Cave - EU and US: Marketing fitspiration from SoulCycle - SoulCycle has taken the US by storm, with fitness studios...more

Whose Your Mommy? Legality of Surrogacy Contracts

It appears that regardless of her separation and subsequent divorce from husband, Lamar Sally, television personality, Sherri Shephard, will still retain the title of “mommy” to Lamar Sally, Jr. On March 1, 2016, the...more

Celebrity Trademark Watch: Gift Bag Promoter Not Likely to Thank the Academy for Oscars Trademark Lawsuit

Celebrated film actors have it tough. After all, only two men and two women can take home a “Best” or “Best Supporting” acting Oscar each year. The lucky winners of 2016 will be announced this coming Sunday, February 28,...more

Celebrity Trademark Watch: Who Owns Marilyn Monroe’s Image? – Right of Publicity vs. Trademark Rights

In her posthumously published autobiography, My Story, screen legend Marilyn Monroe wrote: “I knew I belonged to the public and to the world, not because I was talented or even beautiful but because I had never belonged to...more

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