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Author Topic: Laws regarding using images of the President?  (Read 104 times)

MYK

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Laws regarding using images of the President?
« on: 07-13-18 at 02:56 pm »

The "baby Trump balloon" in Londonstan got me to wondering, what rights do sitting presidents, and I guess other public political figures, have to control the use of their image?  Especially commercially, for products that aren't related to political speech?

On the other side of the spectrum, there were Obama dildos and Obama chia pets being sold.  I think the chia pets may have been somehow licensed, but I doubt the dildos were.

And there have been a few products featuring Melania, some in extremely bad taste.

I realize it gets much more complicated when considering multiple countries, so dealing with just the U.S. is fine.
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"The life of a patent solicitor has always been a hard one."  Judge Giles Rich, Application of Ruschig, 379 F.2d 990.

Disclaimer: not only am I not a lawyer, I'm not your lawyer.  Therefore, this does not constitute legal advice.

Toot Aps Esroh

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Re: Laws regarding using images of the President?
« Reply #1 on: 07-13-18 at 04:35 pm »

The "baby Trump balloon" in Londonstan got me to wondering, what rights do sitting presidents, and I guess other public political figures, have to control the use of their image?  Especially commercially, for products that aren't related to political speech?

On the other side of the spectrum, there were Obama dildos and Obama chia pets being sold.  I think the chia pets may have been somehow licensed, but I doubt the dildos were.

And there have been a few products featuring Melania, some in extremely bad taste.

I realize it gets much more complicated when considering multiple countries, so dealing with just the U.S. is fine.


I'm just guessing here but I don't know why a famous political figure couldn't sue on the same basis as a film celeb or sports star over commercial misappropriation of their likeness. 

Didn't some supermarket chain in Chicago lose bigtime when Michael Jordan sued over steak ad flyers they ran with his famous "23" jersey?  The size of the verdict there was based on the fact that he promotes and licenses his likeness, but I don't necessarily think it went to the question of misappropriation or not.

 
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