9th Circ. Sacks EA's Free-Speech Defense In Likeness Row

Law360, New York (July 31, 2013, 4:58 PM EDT) -- The Ninth Circuit ruled Wednesday that the First Amendment doesn’t shield Electronic Arts Inc. from a right-of-publicity suit claiming the video game giant has illegally profited off of the likenesses of athletes in its college football and basketball games.

In a 2-1 opinion, the Ninth Circuit upheld a district court ruling that EA did not add enough creative traits to the likenesses of players to obtain First Amendment protection under the so-called transformative use defense, bringing it in line with a Third Circuit ruling handed down...
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