News & Commentary

May 22, 2019 6:00 pm PT
New York state right of publicity and right of privacy bills senate assembly legislaiton
Last week the New York Senate introduced a substantially revised version of a right of publicity bill, S5959.  There are many promising improvements in this draft from the earlier assembly version (reintroduced in February), but also a lot of concerns raised by the draft. I am told that the...
May 2, 2019 9:30 am PT
copyright office right of publicity privacy moral rights report seal
In a report issued on April 23rd by the Register of Copyrights, the U.S. Copyright Office suggests that the lack of uniformity in state right of publicity laws may require Congressional intervention. The call for Congress to consider such a right arose in the course of a 107-page report issued by...
January 7, 2019 5:00 pm PT
Today, the United States Supreme Court denied review of the California Court of Appeal decision in De Havilland v. FX Networks. This leaves in place the California appellate court's strong decision holding that the First Amendment bars the right of publicity and false light claims de...
December 28, 2018 2:15 pm PT
john olive GNC right of publicity lawsuit
NOTE: This post has been updated to reflect the withdrawal of the original appelalte opinon and its replacement with one filed on December 27, 2018. The only difference is that the new decision affirmed rather than reversed the trial court's holding with regard to there being no prevailing party...
November 30, 2018 11:30 am PT
seventh circuit court of appeals right of publicity fantasy sports fanduel daniels
Yesterday, the Seventh Circuit ended the Daniels v. Fanduel case. Several former college athletes had sued over the use of their names, images, and statistics in online fantasy sports games―in particular uses by FanDuel and DraftKing. The plaintiffs alleged that the uses violated their...
October 26, 2018 3:15 pm PT
daniels fanduel right of publicity indiana newsworthy first amendment
This week the Indiana Supreme Court held in Daniels v. FanDuel that uses of players’ names, pictures, and statistics in online fantasy sports games and related advertisements are of “newsworthy value.” Accordingly, the uses are not actionable under Indiana’s right of publicity statute...
October 18, 2018 12:00 pm PT
jennifer rothman right of publicity USPTO nationla trademark exposition panel postmortem right of publicity kareem abdul-jabbar
The video has finally been posted from my July talk about postmortem rights of publicity for the USPTO’s National Trademark Exposition held at the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C. My talk is followed by comments by a former IRS examiner and tax attorney, and a panel discussion with basketball legend...
September 6, 2018 10:30 am PT
right of publicity electronic arts madden nfl davis class certification
Yesterday, the district court in Davis v. Electronic Arts confirmed its holding that there could not be class certification in the right of publicity case arising from the alleged use of NFL players' identities in the popular sports-themed video game series NFL Madden.  The court...
August 21, 2018 10:45 am PT
Davis electronic arts right of publicity privacy california video game
The summer did not end well for Electronic Arts (EA), as a district court rejected its summary judgment motion in Davis v. Electronic Arts, allowing the right of publicity claims under California's common law to proceed. The claims arise out of the alleged use of real NFL players'...
June 12, 2018 11:15 am PT
right of publicity trademark unfair competition claim t-shirt dj khaled asahd son new york
Last week Khaled M. Khaled, known popularly as DJ Khaled, and the company ATK Entertainment filed a lawsuit objecting to the alleged uses of his son’s name by a clothing company. The complaint (as resubmitted yesterday) alleges violations of trademark law, right of publicity and privacy laws (under...

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The Book

Privacy Reimagined For A Public World

THE RIGHT OF PUBLICITY: Privacy Reimagined for a Public World

This book from Harvard University Press by Professor Jennifer Rothman traces the history and development of the right of publicity and its current collision course with individual liberty, free speech and copyright law.

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