Use of Likeness in Video Games

demolivenow.png Former basketball star Ed O’Bannon and former quarterback Sam Keller have now joined forces in a multimillion-dollar federal class action lawsuit that is proceeding in the US against the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). The lawsuit has been joined by 15 former NCAA basketball and football athletes.  Collegiate sports is big business in the US and the NCAA generates significant revenues from merchandising and licensing. The NCAA’s defence is that athletes like O’Bannon waived all their commercials rights when they signed a form authorizing the NCAA to use their images for promotional activities.  The lawsuit alleges that the NCAA is improperly profiting by using athletes’ images in video games such as the Electronic Arts title NCAA Basketball ’09. 

If you are considering using any personality or likeness in a video game or smartphone app, ensure you get proper legal advice on well-drafted written authorizations.

Link to: Consolidated Class Action Complaint (PDF) 

Related Reading: Video Games & Free Speech  

Calgary – 07:00 MST

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