Category Archives: right of publicity

It’s possible to violate the right of publicity intentionally but innocently

Jordan v. Jewel Food Stores, Inc., No. 10-c-340 (N.D. Ill. Mar. 12, 2015)   Jewel took out a page in a commemorative issue of Sports Illustrated congratulating Michael Jordan on his 2009 induction into the Hall of Fame.  Time asked … Continue reading

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Copyright preemption bars athletes’ right of publicity claims against photo sales

Maloney v. T3Media, Inc., No. 14-cv-05048 (C.D. Cal. Mar. 6, 2015)   Plaintiffs, members of the Catholic University basketball team from 1997 until 2001, sued T3, which provides cloud-based storage, hosting and licensing services for digital content uploaded by third-parties. … Continue reading

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None but Bob Marley’s heirs can free our minds

Fifty-Six Hope Road Music, Ltd. v. A.V.E.L.A., Inc., — F.3d —-, 2015 WL 728031, No. 12–17502 (9th Cir. Feb. 20, 2015)   Despite being a plaintiff victory, there’s a fair amount in here that might hearten opponents of a generalized … Continue reading

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kitsch doesn’t violate the right of publicity

Rosa and Raymond Parks Institute for Self Development v. Target Corp., No. 2:13-CV-817 (M.D. Ala. Feb. 9, 2015)   The Parks Institute, a 501(c)(3) corporation, “owns the name and likeness of the late Rosa Parks,” an icon of the civil … Continue reading

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Trademark/right of publicity questions of the day

Via Mycokerewards: Do the referenced bands have any claims against Coke, assuming this was done without permission?  Does New Kids apply to a promotional site like Mycokerewards?  Do the comparisons/food jokes suffice for transformativeness? Coke’s “vote for your favorite food-inspired … Continue reading

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IP question of the day, Harper Lee edition

Amazon’s Write On is its project challenging Wattpad, trying to develop writers–including fan writers.  Participants aren’t compensated, but this is a commercial endeavor on Amazon’s part and presumably it will try to transition the successful ones to paid publishing.  So, … Continue reading

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New article: images and the right of publicity

Rebecca Tushnet, A Mask that Eats into the Face: Images and the Right of Publicity (38 Columbia J.L. & Arts, forthcoming 2015)   Abstract: In their eagerness to reward celebrities for the power of their “images,” and to prevent other … Continue reading

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