No Doubt Settles ‘Band Hero’ Lawsuit over Avatars with Activision
On October 3, 2012, popular musicians No Doubt settle their ongoing lawsuit against Activision Publishing, Inc. over the use of the group’s ‘avatars’ in the ‘Band Hero’ video game. No Doubt had filed suit for breach of contract and right to publicity claims when it was discovered that players could use the No Doubt avatars to perform songs in the game by other musicians.
No Doubt alleged that they had been “turned into a virtual karaoke act” by the game, and asserted that the game feature negatively affected their “carefully crafted public image.” They argued that their ‘avatars’ should only be allowed to perform the three No Doubt singles the group licensed to Activision for inclusion in the game.
Previous attempts by Activision to have the case dismissed were all turned aside, in part guided by a California appeals court’s refusal to accept the validity of Activision’s First Amendment defense.