The future of the music industry has forever changed due to social media and companies interested in hiring artists as an influencer’ need to understand the changing landscape of intellectual property protections.
“The music business is no longer just about the music, it’s more than ever about the aesthetic, lifestyle, and influence surrounding celebrities,” says Abdo. “Social media has made it easier than ever for musicians to use their image to sell products, perhaps rather than selling records. California’s right to publicity law extends 70 years after an artist’s death, and it covers holograms, Abdo notes.”
Grande initially turned down an offer by the fashion giant, but earlier this week, the pop star filed a $10 million lawsuit against Forever 21 in a Los Angeles federal court. The suit claims that the fashion giant posted on social media and website images and videos using her name, likeness, and music after Grande turned down an endorsement deal.
Below are a few examples of the images posted that all look eerily similar to Grande’s various outfits. Some of the posts captions even included lyrics to “7 rings” while others featured video clips. Forever 21 has since removed all posts in question and has not made an official comment on the lawsuit.
“That was just a classic example of using somebody’s celebrity image without their authorization for commercial gain,” says Jeff Kobulnick, an intellectual property lawyer who has represented Kendall Jenner’s business. “That’s very similar to what’s going on as alleged in this case.”
– Excerpt from an article for Pitchfork by Marc Hogan. Find the full article here.
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