Topshop Fought Rihanna. Rihanna Won.
Never mess with a Bad Gal…
Remember when Rihanna sued Topshop over the high street chain printing her photo on a T-shirt without her permission? Well, not only did Ri win the original court battle in 2013, but Topshop’s appeal against the ruling has just been dismissed. RiRi: 2, Sir Philip Green: 0.
The photo in question was from Rihanna’s ‘We Found Love’ video shoot, but was unauthorised, with only the photographer being approached by Topshop to license the image.
Ri’s court success is the first of its kind, with celebrities struggling to control their image rights, due to a lack of specific law on the matter.
Mike Gardner, head of intellectual property at the law firm Wedlake Bell, told The Guardian, “Rihanna was forced to rely on the English common law right of passing off because in the UK, unlike certain other countries, there is no ‘image rights’ law to help celebrities to control the commercial use of their image.
“The court of appeal has dismissed Topshop’s appeal against that earlier high court decision, so the ban remains in place. This ruling in what was seen as a finely balanced case, may encourage other celebrities to make similar claims in the future.”
One small step for Rihanna, one giant leap for celebkind.