News & Analysis as of

Right of Publicity

California Court Unfriends Rapper’s ROP Claims

by McDermott Will & Emery on

The Court of Appeals for the State of California upheld a trial court decision granting defendant’s motion to strike under California’s anti-SLAPP statute but remanded the position denying defendant’s motion to strike the...more

Claim Is Gone With The Wind At Death

Two time academy award winner Olivia de Havilland seeks an expedited trial for the lawsuit involving her right of publicity. Olivia de Havilland, DBE v. FX Networks, et al, BC667011 (Superior Ct. Calif., June 30, 2017). The...more

The Internet Stole My Face: New Advances in Technology Could Make Everyone a Digital Video Puppet

“Believe nothing you hear, and only one half that you see.” Edgar Alan Poe wrote those words over a century ago, yet if he were alive today he may opt for the darker: “Believe nothing you hear and nothing you see.” Over the...more

Coming Into Focus: Recent Decisions Help Define the Scope of Right of Publicity Claims

by Jackson Walker on

When it comes to the right of publicity, it helps to keep tabs on California law. The right to prevent the unauthorized commercial use of a person’s name, likeness or other indicia of identity may vary from state-to-state....more

Former Band Member Sues The Roots

by Brooks Pierce on

Frank “Knuckles” Walker, a musician and percussionist best known as a former member of the band The Roots, recently filed a lawsuit against his former band members and others. A copy of the complaint is available here....more

AD-ttorneys@law

by BakerHostetler on

“Iron Mike” Tyson is a controversial sports figure who seems in equal parts loved and loathed by the public. Celebrated for a genuine world-class talent and derided for his behavior in and out of the ring, Tyson has a public...more

Like It or Love It: How Not to Get Pinned (Legally) When Using Social Media to Promote Your Brand

by Buchalter on

Twitter®, Instagram®, Facebook®, Pinterest® and other social media websites and apps are great ways to interact with friends, family and potential customers. They are great avenues for advertising and promotion of one’s...more

AD-ttorneys@law

by BakerHostetler on

Consumer David Greenstein is pursuing excessive slack-fill claims against the producer of popular puffed rice and corn snack food Pirate’s Booty. Greenstein, who is representing himself in the lawsuit, claims to have...more

Media Law Bulletin: “All I’ve Got Is a Photograph” — Copyright Law’s Preemption of Right of Publicity Claims

by Sedgwick LLP on

The names and likenesses of celebrities, athletes and other public figures can be extremely valuable, as evidenced by the premium prices paid by many companies for celebrity endorsements and celebrity-branded goods. Think...more

Keeping Up With The Kopyrights

by Dorsey & Whitney LLP on

Kendall and Kylie Jenner are beefing with the late Tupac Shakur. The Jenners are not singers or rappers (yet), but they do have a fashion line, the “Kendall + Kylie” brand. The famous sisters’ company used images of the late...more

@Handle It With #Care: Right Of Publicity Tips For Companies Who Market Online

by Fox Rothschild LLP on

In a growing world of technology, companies are employing social media platforms to attract new customers and grow their online presence. #Hashtags and @Handles – made popular by Twitter – have proven to be effective sources...more

MoFo IP Newsletter - July 2017

by Morrison & Foerster LLP on

Supreme Court Hits Reset on Patent Venue Law in TC Heartland - In the recent TC Heartland LLC v. Kraft Foods Group Brands LLC decision, the Supreme Court reversed nearly thirty years of patent venue law and held that a...more

Can’t Say “I Ain’t Mad At Cha” for Copying Me

by Knobbe Martens on

On June 1, 2017, noted music and fashion photographer Danny Clinch filed suit in the Southern District of New York in connection with the use of two photographs of famed rapper Tupac Shukar (“Tupac”) on t-shirts. The...more

Absent Commercial Use, Copyright Law Likely Preempts Right of Publicity Claims

by McDermott Will & Emery on

In a right of publicity case, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld a district court decision granting a motion to strike under California’s anti-SLAPP statute on the basis of copyright preemption. Maloney v....more

What Would the Perfect Employee Agreement Look Like?

Lawyers strive for perfection in their work, but time constraints, budgets, and other factors work against us. Also, perfection is not always the same thing in every circumstance. It is interesting, however, to contemplate...more

Lawsuit Attempts to Finish the Job that the Iceberg Started

Stephen Cummings has sued James Cameron for turning his life story into the hit movie Titanic. Mr. Cummings claims that Leonardo DiCaprio’s character Jack Dawson “is based solely/wholly/only” on his life. Cummings claims...more

The Kardashians Can’t Keep up with Copyright Law

Khloe Kardashian is the latest Kardashian to find herself in court over her activities on social media. The youngest Kardashian sister was sued by a photographer for copyright infringement in Xposure Photos UK Ltd v Khloe...more

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

Navigating the Lifecycle of an Eponymous Brand (Part 3)

In this three-part series, we identified three distinct seasons in the lifecycle of an eponymous brand: (1) Choosing the Brand, (2) Commercializing the Brand, and (3) Legacy of the Brand. In Part 1, we discussed what is at...more

Intellectual Property Bulletin - Spring 2017

by Fenwick & West LLP on

It’s Dangerous to Go Alone! Take This. Intellectual Property Tips for the Esports Industry - With the annual Game Developers Conference spectacular in our rearview mirror, and the NBA’s partnership with Take-Two to...more

Advertising Law - April 2017 #3

Amazon, FTC Reach Deal Over In-App Charges - Amazon and the Federal Trade Commission have agreed to drop their appeals in a lawsuit accusing the online retailer of billing consumers for unauthorized in-app charges incurred...more

Litigation Alert: Ninth Circuit Rules on Copyright Preemption of Right-of-Publicity Claims

by Fenwick & West LLP on

Last week, in Maloney v. T3 Media, Inc., the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that claims under state right-of-publicity law are preempted by the Copyright Act “when a likeness has been captured in a...more

A “Thriller” in Tax Court: The Estate of Michael Jackson and IRS Dispute Valuation of Pop Star’s Image

by Bowditch & Dewey on

How much were the late King of Pop’s name and image worth when he died? His estate put the figure at $2,105 but the IRS believes the value is at least $434 million. That’s a huge discrepancy and with penalties and interest...more

EU Retail News - February 2017

by Bryan Cave on

When Can You and When Should You Use Your Own Name for Your Brand? It is a common misconception that we are all entitled to create brands under our own names. It is also a misapprehension that it is always a good idea —...more

Sexual Harassment Parody Commercial Held Not To Violate Lanham Act

Section 43(a) of the Lanham Act prohibits false or misleading statements in commerce that are likely to cause confusion as to a person’s affiliation, approval or sponsorship of someone else’s commercial activities. Here’s an...more

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