News & Commentary

January 7, 2016 9:15 pm PT
Chachi Gonzalez right of publicity law suit versus mother
Olivia “Chachi” Gonzales, 19, is best known for her appearance and victory on MTV’s “America’s Best Dance Crew” in 2011. Chachi designed her own dance apparel and started selling “Chachimomma” pants similar to ones that she made popular by wearing them on the TV show.  While Chachi was a minor...
January 4, 2016 10:00 pm PT
hurt locker right of publicty sarver v. chartier resubmitted
On Christmas Eve, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals resubmitted Sarver v. Chartier for consideration.  I posted earlier about this long-lingering right of publicity lawsuit arising out of the Academy-Award winning film The Hurt Locker.  If the Supreme Court grants...
January 4, 2016 7:30 pm PT
Parks v. Target right of publicity eleventh circuit decision commemorative plaque by Marrott
Today, the Eleventh Circuit rejected a lawsuit by the Rosa Parks Institute—which owns the rights to the deceased Park’s name and likeness. The case involved the Target retail chain’s selling of books, and a movie about Rosa Parks, as well as a commemorative plaque that contained her and Martin...
December 11, 2015 10:45 am PT
NFL players brief in Maloney v. T3 media right of publicity ninth circuit appeal
Earlier this week the NFL, MLB, NHL and MLS players associations filed an amicus brief supporting the NCAA student-athletes' appeal from a decision that held that their right of publicity claims were preempted by copyright law. The student-athletes objected to the sale of photographs that were...
December 11, 2015 10:15 am PT
Amanda Ermon right of publicity lawsuit photograph
African-American model Amanda Ermon has sued several real estate firms for using photographs of her that were sold to them by a photographer without her permission. The photographer allegedly had taken the pictures with her permission, but only had authorization to display the photographs in his...
December 9, 2015 3:15 pm PT
harris faulkner and hamster toy right of publicity lawsuit
Fox News reporter Harris Faulkner filed her Opposition to Hasbro’s Motion to Dismiss her right of publicity claim earlier this week. Faulkner’s attorneys emphasize that Hasbro can’t use her name for its toy hamster even if the hamster looks nothing like her. Hasbro’s main argument in its motion to...
December 9, 2015 2:45 pm PT
hurt locker right of publicity lawsuit sarver ninth circuit
In a letter filed this week in the Ninth Circuit, Sarver’s attorney reminds the Ninth Circuit that this case, which was argued on May 9, 2013, still has not been decided by the Court of Appeals. Sarver v. The Hurt Locker, LLC, involves a right of publicity claim (among other claims) for...
December 8, 2015 2:30 pm PT
right of publicity lawsuit supreme court certiorari davis v. electronic arts madden nfl
Michael Davis and the other retired football players who sued Electronic Arts for the use of their identities in Madden NFL filed their opposition brief today in the Supreme Court. They argue against granting certiorari in the case. The Ninth Circuit previously held that the alleged use of the...
December 4, 2015 2:30 pm PT
AVVO logo right of publicity suit by lawyers
A class action has been filed on behalf of California attorneys against the website Avvo, a service that provides attorney profiles sometimes without the attorneys' consent. Avvo collects public information about various attorneys such as name, specialities, years in practice and firm information...
December 2, 2015 3:30 pm PT
Reese Witherspoon engagement ring right of publicity suit
(Revised to reflect final court order) On Tuesday, a court ruled that Reese Witherspoon could proceed with her right of publicity claims against a number of defendants who had used her name and image to sell various products, particularly jewelery.  One company allegedly named an engagement...

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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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