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UnderGround Forums >> Tattoo artist suing THQ over UFC Undisputed


11/17/12 4:30 PM
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explodingboy
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Ah, America.

11/17/12 4:31 PM
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MasterofMartialArts
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chaplinshouse - This just in: Usain Bolt files lawsuit vs Condit and Jackson in superior court Phone Post
0/10 Phone Post
11/17/12 4:36 PM
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ILikePsych
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Macedawgg - 
Jump Kick - 
yellow wrkahlc -
Jump Kick -  Same people who were bitching about napster being shut down. It's a pretty strait forward concept in copyright law that the artist owns rights to his original creative work of art. Phone Post

No and no. This isn't like Napster at all. He didn't copyright the tattoo when he originally drew it and placed it on Condit's body. He did AFTER the fact the he saw he could make some money. Anyone can see he's only doing it to cash in, or at least attempt to do so. The judge will hopefully see that, and tell this guy to start having his clients sign contracts SAYING they can't sign over the likeness before Escobedo even places thw artwork on their body. It's only fair.
You don't know the first thing about copyright law. Copyright was established the moment the artist affixed his original work of art on Conduit's body. Phone Post

But it seems to me the VAST majority of people consider a tattoo a work for hire--not a commissioned art work.  The reasonable expectation of the parties should factor into the analysis. 

If the tattoo "artist" is taking this position--which seems to me contrary to the understanding of the vast majority, he should be required to get a written contract. 

I understand that the law might shift the burden to the recipient--but in this context, do not agree with that shift.


http://www.copyright.gov/circs/circ09.pdf

 

It doesn't matter what the "vast majority of people consider". It's only a works made for hire if:

 

(a) it falls within one of the nine categories of works listed in part 2 above and (b) there is a written agreement between parties specifying that the work is a work made for hire.

11/17/12 5:07 PM
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yellow wrkahlc
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Edited: 11/17/12 5:42 PM
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Okay, let's clear this up right.

Does Escobedo have a case?  In some twisted way, yes. It appears his work falls under this:

http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/102

Condit's skin is considered a tangible medium, so Escobedo's tattoo can be considered copyrighted (I apologize, Jump Kick. You were correct.). 

Here's the thing: the tattoo in question is of a lion. Some of you are probably saying,"So what, Escobedo drew that lion, it's original in that sense." You're right about that, but unfortunately for Escobedo, THQ could easily say the tattoo isn't original enough to be copyrightable.

HOWEVER, it is the court's job to decide whether or not this was considered a work-for-hire. If so, the tattoo artist has no ground for a lawsuit (reason being Condit and Escobedo would both share the rights to the tattoo in question). One specification to this law might not be met (in writing, stating it was a work-for-hire). But, as we all know, the Judge has the final say, so this could very well be irrelevant due to the nature of the case, come court time. The lawsuit would hold ground if the tattoo was reproduced on someone/something OTHER THAN Condit. But, because THQ used Condit's likeness lawfully, they can easily argue that they were well within their rights to reproduce the tattoo since they technically "reproduced" Condit. Because of this, it could very well fall under fair use. Implied licensing was something I had originally thought of in this case, as well. The artist must have known Condit would be appearing frequently in all kinds of media, including video games.

 

The whole concept of copyrighting a tattoo seems strange and unruly. Sometimes, a tattoo artist DOES have reason for a suit. But in this case, I don't believe Escobedo does. The law can be very gray in cases like this. In all honesty, I'm hoping THQ wins. If Escobedo wins this case, there's no telling what happens next. it could set off a chain reaction for future installments of the UFC series, as well as other video game titles in other sports.

EDIT: I made typos.

11/17/12 5:18 PM
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CWH
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yellow wrkahlc - 

As a fellow artist, I can see where he's coming from.

Unfortunately, it's obvious he's just trying to get paid. It's a fucking tattoo. Not a hanging piece of art work in a museum or a clothing line logo.

This is the most ridiculous thing I've ever heard.

 


This was my exact thought. Good call.

Ridiculous.
11/17/12 5:30 PM
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redeye2000
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wait. so first you need to pay the tattoo artist for his work on your body. then you need to pay him a licence fee when it appears in a game.

imagine the guy who did alexnader emelianko his tattoo complaining for copyrights lol.

11/17/12 5:35 PM
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ranier wolfcastle
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i bet if they could find the photograph that the tattoo artist copied, theyd be right off the hook. then the photographer could sue the tatoo artist and the video game

11/17/12 5:41 PM
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yellow wrkahlc
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thatsme - 
yellow wrkahlc - 
Jump Kick -  Same people who were bitching about napster being shut down. It's a pretty strait forward concept in copyright law that the artist owns rights to his original creative work of art. Phone Post

No and no. This isn't like Napster at all. He didn't copyright the tattoo when he originally drew it and placed it on Condit's body. He did AFTER the fact the he saw he could make some money. Anyone can see he's only doing it to cash in, or at least attempt to do so. The judge will hopefully see that, and tell this guy to start having his clients sign contracts SAYING they can't sign over the likeness before Escobedo even places thw artwork on their body. It's only fair.

Yes and yes it is. Do you think Marvel Comics wouldn't have your ass in court if you had a website with pictures of Spiderman or the Avengers?

You are goddamn right they would because they sent me a "cease and desist" letter unless I got their permission post pictures of any of their characters.

Already retracted my statement on the bottom of last page, pally. I wasn't aware tattoos applied in that sense.

11/17/12 5:46 PM
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Calebcb
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Tyson's tattoo artist tried something similar after the Hangover 2 came out and got a settlement. To me, the answer of ownership is simple. Who can choose to show, alter or remove the art once it's tattooed on a body? Only the person whose body the art is on, thus they are the true owner.
11/17/12 5:54 PM
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chaplinshouse
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thatsme - 
yellow wrkahlc - 
Jump Kick -  Same people who were bitching about napster being shut down. It's a pretty strait forward concept in copyright law that the artist owns rights to his original creative work of art. Phone Post

No and no. This isn't like Napster at all. He didn't copyright the tattoo when he originally drew it and placed it on Condit's body. He did AFTER the fact the he saw he could make some money. Anyone can see he's only doing it to cash in, or at least attempt to do so. The judge will hopefully see that, and tell this guy to start having his clients sign contracts SAYING they can't sign over the likeness before Escobedo even places thw artwork on their body. It's only fair.

Yes and yes it is. Do you think Marvel Comics wouldn't have your ass in court if you had a website with pictures of Spiderman or the Avengers?

You are goddamn right they would because they sent me a "cease and desist" letter unless I got their permission post pictures of any of their characters.

marvel comics is a money making machine through many decades.  vs..... douchebag tat guy opportunist? lol

and also funny to compare music to tats.  music profit is continual.  tat profits end when the customer pays and should only be contested if someone finds a way to make money off the tat artist's original work which is next to impossible vs music and comics.  for this asshat to succeed in this buillshit lawsuit it would have a major effect on any tats being shown by a company that makes money.  games, movies, tv, magazines, etc etc, even though the tat had NOTHING to do with a cent being passed in said media outlets, after the fact.  NO ONE made a penny off the douchey tattoo EXCEPT the tat artist!  "Wow, I'm gonna go buy that THQ mma game!!"  ---"why, is it badass?"  --"who cares!!! Carlos Condit's lion tattoo is in it!!!!"  ---- "oh SNAP son!!! put me down for one!" lol. 

11/17/12 5:57 PM
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yellow wrkahlc
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Edited: 11/17/12 6:00 PM
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thatsme - 
yellow wrkahlc - 

Okay, let's clear this up right.

Does Escobedo have a case?  In some twisted way, yes. It appears his work falls under this:

http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/102

Condit's skin is considered a tangible medium, so Escobedo's tattoo can be considered copyrighted (I apologize, Jump Kick. You were correct.). 

Here's the thing: the tattoo in question is of a lion. Some of you are probably saying,"So what, Escobedo drew that lion, it's original in that sense." You're right about that, but unfortunately for Escobedo, THQ could easily say the tattoo isn't original enough to be copyrightable.

HOWEVER, it is the court's job to decide whether or not this was considered a work-for-hire. If so, the tattoo artist has no ground for a lawsuit (reason being Condit and Escobedo both share the rights to the tattoo in question). One specification to this law might not be met (in writing, stating it was a work-for-hire). But, as we all know, the Judge has the final say, so this could very well be irrelevant due to the nature of the case, come court time. The lawsuit would hold ground if the tattoo was reproduced on someone/something OTHER THAN Condit. But, because THQ used Condit's likeness lawfully, they can easily argue that they were well within their rights to reproduce the tattoo since they technically "reproduced" Condit. Because of this, it could very well fall under fair use. Implied licensing was something I had originally thought of in this case, as well. The artist must have known Condit would be appearing frequently in all kinds of media, including video games.

 

The whole concept of copyrighting a tattoo seems strange and unruly. Sometimes, a tattoo artist DOES have reason for a suit. But in this case, I don't believe Escobedo does. The law can be very gray in cases like this. In all honesty, I'm hoping THQ wins. If Escobedo wins this case, there's no telling what happens next. it could set off a chain reaction for future installments of the UFC series, as well as other video game titles in other sports.

 


You can't clear anything up unless you have a law degree and you don't. Even a dimwit can draw something and claim copyright even if he doesn't have the brains to understand the law.

The standards for Copyright infringement is very low. It doesn't matter if it is on someone's skin or a canvas. Most Tattoo artists have an album of their art, which automatically gets covered under copyright law even if they don't expressively say it is.

Jesus you people are quick to support the UFC for going after some foreign MMA organization for using the UFC's logo and "generic fighting man" canvas, but you call this poor sap a wanker for doing the exact same thing.

That is the Republican mentality and that is why no one likes them enough to give them power over this country.

 

Listen, asshole: I'm not claiming to be a lawyer. I'm simply stating facts. Earlier, I was mistaken regarding tattoos and copyrights. You calling me a 'dimwit' because I thought a tattoo didn't fall under the category is incredibly stupid on your part, considering any case involving a similar matter has never had a fine line drawn as to what's right and what's wrong.

And it's not the same thing at all. That's the UFC's logo. No shit someone can't use that. Some of the examples being used in this thread are fairly different from the case at hand. The only one that was similar was the Tyson lawsuit. Even then, there was no final verdict, because WB and Whitmill settled out of court. As I pointed out above, there's really no final decision on who's right and who's wrong.

This case falls under a gray area. And this whole 'Republican mentality/brainwashing' spiel on this thread is even more ridiculous. 

11/17/12 6:05 PM
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HexRei
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Edited: 11/17/12 6:07 PM
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I also think the Tyson case is different, because Tyson himself is not the only one wearing the ink, Helms' character is and he did not pay the artist for the privilege. I think exceptions should be made in the case of the person themselves being depicted with the tattoo.

Otherwise, it seems to me that even photographing the wearer with the tattoo visible could be considered infringement. It would be reproducing the design without the artist's consent.

Also re: the artist's books of flash, I think there is a clear difference between someone being depicted wearing the tattoo they purchased, and someone who had no paid for the design simply stealing it from the artist's flash book.
11/17/12 6:12 PM
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yellow wrkahlc
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Edited: 11/17/12 6:16 PM
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HexRei - I also think the Tyson case is different, because Tyson himself is not the only one wearing the ink, Helms' character is and he did not pay the artist for the privilege. I think exceptions should be made in the case of the person themselves being depicted with the tattoo.

Otherwise, it seems to me that even photographing the wearer with the tattoo visible could be considered infringement. It would be reproducing the design without the artist's consent.

Also re: the artist's books of flash, I think there is a clear difference between someone being depicted wearing the tattoo they purchased, and someone who had no paid for the design simply stealing it from the artist's flash book.

 

From the way Escobedo's lawyer described their reasoning, it seems they would be inclined to agree with you. 

 

She says because the copyright on the tattoo belongs to Escobedo, it doesn't give Carlos the right to allow third-parties to 'copy or commercialize the image.' So, should Condit basically ask for permission before allowing others to include him in any type of media, displaying his lion tattoo?

As I said in a previous post, there must have been an implied consent/license between the two of them. It's not like Escobedo didn't know who Carlos was and what he did for a living. If he didn't have a problem with the tattoo being displayed in magazines, posters, and on television for so long, why should it be any different now that it's being displayed on Condit in a video game?

He just wants money, whether the judge finds him entitled to it or not.

11/17/12 6:19 PM
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whoabro
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Chareth Cutestory - Tattoos are commissioned, not licensed. Bullshit lawsuit is bullshit.
That is my understanding (not an attorney but i work with a lot of them on trademark and copyright matters). Phone Post
11/17/12 6:20 PM
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ILikePsych
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yellow wrkahlc - 

Okay, let's clear this up right.

Does Escobedo have a case?  In some twisted way, yes. It appears his work falls under this:

http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/102

Condit's skin is considered a tangible medium, so Escobedo's tattoo can be considered copyrighted (I apologize, Jump Kick. You were correct.). 

Here's the thing: the tattoo in question is of a lion. Some of you are probably saying,"So what, Escobedo drew that lion, it's original in that sense." You're right about that, but unfortunately for Escobedo, THQ could easily say the tattoo isn't original enough to be copyrightable.

HOWEVER, it is the court's job to decide whether or not this was considered a work-for-hire. If so, the tattoo artist has no ground for a lawsuit (reason being Condit and Escobedo would both share the rights to the tattoo in question). One specification to this law might not be met (in writing, stating it was a work-for-hire). But, as we all know, the Judge has the final say, so this could very well be irrelevant due to the nature of the case, come court time. The lawsuit would hold ground if the tattoo was reproduced on someone/something OTHER THAN Condit. But, because THQ used Condit's likeness lawfully, they can easily argue that they were well within their rights to reproduce the tattoo since they technically "reproduced" Condit. Because of this, it could very well fall under fair use. Implied licensing was something I had originally thought of in this case, as well. The artist must have known Condit would be appearing frequently in all kinds of media, including video games.

 

The whole concept of copyrighting a tattoo seems strange and unruly. Sometimes, a tattoo artist DOES have reason for a suit. But in this case, I don't believe Escobedo does. The law can be very gray in cases like this. In all honesty, I'm hoping THQ wins. If Escobedo wins this case, there's no telling what happens next. it could set off a chain reaction for future installments of the UFC series, as well as other video game titles in other sports.

EDIT: I made typos.


The copyrightability won't be under question; it was an original work, hand drawn by the artist. Also, if this goes to court, which it won't, they will use the Supreme Court's definition of work made for hire. So, unless Condit has a signed contract stating that it was a work made for hire, which he probably doesn't, the artist owns the copyright. 

 

As far as the reproducing Condit part; that's not exactly true; yet a little bit more susceptible to interpretation. The only person permitted to copy a copyrighted work of art is the copyright holder; unless, of course, the copyright holder gives consent to a third party to reproduce the work. Also, THQ *allegedly* altered the tattoo, which would violate copyright laws as well. 

 

As for the fair use reference; it would never hold with the use of the Four Factor Fair Use Test. It's for commercial use, has an imaginative nature, more than a small amount is used, and avoids payments for permission. All four factors weigh heavily in the favor of the copyright holder.

11/17/12 6:21 PM
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Macedawgg
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thatsme - 
Macedawgg - 
Jump Kick - 
yellow wrkahlc -
Jump Kick -  Same people who were bitching about napster being shut down. It's a pretty strait forward concept in copyright law that the artist owns rights to his original creative work of art. Phone Post

No and no. This isn't like Napster at all. He didn't copyright the tattoo when he originally drew it and placed it on Condit's body. He did AFTER the fact the he saw he could make some money. Anyone can see he's only doing it to cash in, or at least attempt to do so. The judge will hopefully see that, and tell this guy to start having his clients sign contracts SAYING they can't sign over the likeness before Escobedo even places thw artwork on their body. It's only fair.
You don't know the first thing about copyright law. Copyright was established the moment the artist affixed his original work of art on Conduit's body. Phone Post

But it seems to me the VAST majority of people consider a tattoo a work for hire--not a commissioned art work.  The reasonable expectation of the parties should factor into the analysis. 

If the tattoo "artist" is taking this position--which seems to me contrary to the understanding of the vast majority, he should be required to get a written contract. 

I understand that the law might shift the burden to the recipient--but in this context, do not agree with that shift.


I don't know this "vast majority" you speak of since the vast majority of people probably never heard of intellectual property.

Assuming you are correct--you make my point further--

These individuals certainly don't believe they will require future permission for anything after paying for the tattoo--hence by default, they thought they were paying for a work for hire.

11/17/12 6:23 PM
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whoabro
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HexRei - I also think the Tyson case is different, because Tyson himself is not the only one wearing the ink, Helms' character is and he did not pay the artist for the privilege. I think exceptions should be made in the case of the person themselves being depicted with the tattoo.

Otherwise, it seems to me that even photographing the wearer with the tattoo visible could be considered infringement. It would be reproducing the design without the artist's consent.

Also re: the artist's books of flash, I think there is a clear difference between someone being depicted wearing the tattoo they purchased, and someone who had no paid for the design simply stealing it from the artist's flash book.
Excellent post, agree completely Phone Post
11/17/12 6:32 PM
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anonymousone
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whats next, hair stylist suing that the haircut they gave is their right to money
11/17/12 6:47 PM
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RKing85
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it's the American way! Sue anybody for any reason!
11/17/12 7:05 PM
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HexRei
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ILikePsych - 
yellow wrkahlc - 

Okay, let's clear this up right.

Does Escobedo have a case?  In some twisted way, yes. It appears his work falls under this:

http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/102

Condit's skin is considered a tangible medium, so Escobedo's tattoo can be considered copyrighted (I apologize, Jump Kick. You were correct.). 

Here's the thing: the tattoo in question is of a lion. Some of you are probably saying,"So what, Escobedo drew that lion, it's original in that sense." You're right about that, but unfortunately for Escobedo, THQ could easily say the tattoo isn't original enough to be copyrightable.

HOWEVER, it is the court's job to decide whether or not this was considered a work-for-hire. If so, the tattoo artist has no ground for a lawsuit (reason being Condit and Escobedo would both share the rights to the tattoo in question). One specification to this law might not be met (in writing, stating it was a work-for-hire). But, as we all know, the Judge has the final say, so this could very well be irrelevant due to the nature of the case, come court time. The lawsuit would hold ground if the tattoo was reproduced on someone/something OTHER THAN Condit. But, because THQ used Condit's likeness lawfully, they can easily argue that they were well within their rights to reproduce the tattoo since they technically "reproduced" Condit. Because of this, it could very well fall under fair use. Implied licensing was something I had originally thought of in this case, as well. The artist must have known Condit would be appearing frequently in all kinds of media, including video games.

 

The whole concept of copyrighting a tattoo seems strange and unruly. Sometimes, a tattoo artist DOES have reason for a suit. But in this case, I don't believe Escobedo does. The law can be very gray in cases like this. In all honesty, I'm hoping THQ wins. If Escobedo wins this case, there's no telling what happens next. it could set off a chain reaction for future installments of the UFC series, as well as other video game titles in other sports.

EDIT: I made typos.


The copyrightability won't be under question; it was an original work, hand drawn by the artist. Also, if this goes to court, which it won't, they will use the Supreme Court's definition of work made for hire. So, unless Condit has a signed contract stating that it was a work made for hire, which he probably doesn't, the artist owns the copyright. 

 

As far as the reproducing Condit part; that's not exactly true; yet a little bit more susceptible to interpretation. The only person permitted to copy a copyrighted work of art is the copyright holder; unless, of course, the copyright holder gives consent to a third party to reproduce the work. Also, THQ *allegedly* altered the tattoo, which would violate copyright laws as well. 

 

As for the fair use reference; it would never hold with the use of the Four Factor Fair Use Test. It's for commercial use, has an imaginative nature, more than a small amount is used, and avoids payments for permission. All four factors weigh heavily in the favor of the copyright holder.


So, assuming Lesnar didn't go to a lawyer and have a contract drawn up and signed that proves he bought the full rights to his chest penis, the artist could sue the UFC for using his bare torso in promotional materials?
11/17/12 7:32 PM
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ranier wolfcastle
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found this on his page

a video game can sue HIM!

Like This Page · October 14, 2011 via mobile

guess jack daniels can sue him!

11/17/12 7:49 PM
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chaplinshouse
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WHAT A DICK!!!! ^^^  i would love to be THQ's lawyer vs this d-bag.  One of those cases where you can just relax, show off, get style points

 

11/17/12 7:57 PM
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Tolstolobic
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ranier wolfcastle -

found this on his page

a video game can sue HIM!

Like This Page · October 14, 2011 via mobile

guess jack daniels can sue him!

Not. They not making money of it Phone Post
11/17/12 7:58 PM
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ranier wolfcastle
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yes, he made money for doing that tattoo

11/17/12 8:01 PM
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ILikePsych
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HexRei - 
ILikePsych - 
yellow wrkahlc - 

Okay, let's clear this up right.

Does Escobedo have a case?  In some twisted way, yes. It appears his work falls under this:

http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/102

Condit's skin is considered a tangible medium, so Escobedo's tattoo can be considered copyrighted (I apologize, Jump Kick. You were correct.). 

Here's the thing: the tattoo in question is of a lion. Some of you are probably saying,"So what, Escobedo drew that lion, it's original in that sense." You're right about that, but unfortunately for Escobedo, THQ could easily say the tattoo isn't original enough to be copyrightable.

HOWEVER, it is the court's job to decide whether or not this was considered a work-for-hire. If so, the tattoo artist has no ground for a lawsuit (reason being Condit and Escobedo would both share the rights to the tattoo in question). One specification to this law might not be met (in writing, stating it was a work-for-hire). But, as we all know, the Judge has the final say, so this could very well be irrelevant due to the nature of the case, come court time. The lawsuit would hold ground if the tattoo was reproduced on someone/something OTHER THAN Condit. But, because THQ used Condit's likeness lawfully, they can easily argue that they were well within their rights to reproduce the tattoo since they technically "reproduced" Condit. Because of this, it could very well fall under fair use. Implied licensing was something I had originally thought of in this case, as well. The artist must have known Condit would be appearing frequently in all kinds of media, including video games.

 

The whole concept of copyrighting a tattoo seems strange and unruly. Sometimes, a tattoo artist DOES have reason for a suit. But in this case, I don't believe Escobedo does. The law can be very gray in cases like this. In all honesty, I'm hoping THQ wins. If Escobedo wins this case, there's no telling what happens next. it could set off a chain reaction for future installments of the UFC series, as well as other video game titles in other sports.

EDIT: I made typos.


The copyrightability won't be under question; it was an original work, hand drawn by the artist. Also, if this goes to court, which it won't, they will use the Supreme Court's definition of work made for hire. So, unless Condit has a signed contract stating that it was a work made for hire, which he probably doesn't, the artist owns the copyright. 

 

As far as the reproducing Condit part; that's not exactly true; yet a little bit more susceptible to interpretation. The only person permitted to copy a copyrighted work of art is the copyright holder; unless, of course, the copyright holder gives consent to a third party to reproduce the work. Also, THQ *allegedly* altered the tattoo, which would violate copyright laws as well. 

 

As for the fair use reference; it would never hold with the use of the Four Factor Fair Use Test. It's for commercial use, has an imaginative nature, more than a small amount is used, and avoids payments for permission. All four factors weigh heavily in the favor of the copyright holder.


So, assuming Lesnar didn't go to a lawyer and have a contract drawn up and signed that proves he bought the full rights to his chest penis, the artist could sue the UFC for using his bare torso in promotional materials?

That's a very good question that I do not have the answer to.


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