Minnesota Judge Orders Awarded Damages in NFL Publicity Case to Remain in Escrow

On April 12, 2016, a Minnesota federal judge ordered $150,000 in payments awarded be kept in escrow in response to a request made by NFL players’ attorneys that the fees awarded to certain law firms be withheld, due to a “loan squabble.” In 2010, professional football player John Frederick Dryer filed a putative class action against the National Football League.  His main argument claimed that NFL films violated professional football players’ publicity rights and rights under the Lanham Act, 15 U.S.C. 1125.  Out…
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Copyright Controversy: NFL Players’ In-Game Performances Protected by Individual Publicity Rights

In a decision issued  Friday,February 26, 2016 the Eighth Circuit affirmed a summary judgment ruling against NFL athletes John Frederick Dryer, Elvin Lamont Bethea, and Edward Alvin White. The dispute dates back to 2009 when a number of ex-NFL athletes sued the NFL, alleging in part that the NFL misappropriated their “names, images, symbols, and likenesses, to promote the NFL, sell NFL-related products, and otherwise generate revenue for the NFL” in violation of state right of publicity law and the Lanham Trademark Act of 1946.…
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