Tag: California

Ninth Circuit Tosses Hurt Locker Case

Today the Ninth Circuit finally decided Sarver v. Chartier. The court affirmed the district court’s holding that the alleged use of Sergeant Jeffrey Sarver’s identity in the Academy-Award winning film The Hurt Locker is protected by the First Amendment. The ultimate holding that the use of a real person’s identity in an expressive work, like...

PGA Can Use Caddies as “Human Billboards”

Earlier this week, a federal district court dismissed a right of publicity claim by golf caddies against the PGA. The caddies objected to being forced to wear bibs that advertise various tournaments, golfers, and third-party corporations. The complaint was filed in September 2015 as part of a move to obtain better treatment of caddies on...

Darlene Love Sues Google for Using Her Voice

Darlene Love, an “icon of pop music’s golden age,” sued Google today for using her voice in advertising for mobile phones. Love is ranked 84 on Rolling Stone’s 100 Greatest Singers of all-time list, and is best known for He’s A Rebel, Alone on Christmas, and Christmas (Baby Please Come Home). She is also known...

Child Star Chachi’s Lawsuit Against her Mother is Dismissed

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, Chachi’s mother, Guadalope Gonzales, allegedly...

The Ninth Circuit Resurrects Sarver

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 certiorari in Davis v. Electronic Arts—a case being discussed in conference later this week—look for...

Players Associations File Brief Supporting Reversal in Maloney

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 licensed by the NCAA and that included images of...

Sarver Tells Ninth Circuit – Hey, Don’t Forget About Me!

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 the alleged use...

Respondents File Brief in Supreme Court in Davis v. Electronic Arts

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 players' identities is not protected by...

Class Action by Lawyers Against Website with Attorney Profiles

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 and provides that information in a searchable database that sometimes also includes...

REVISED — L.A. Court Allows Reese Witherspoon to Proceed with Right of Publicity Claim Against Jeweler

(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 ring, Reese, in reference to the famous actor. The...