Pelé sues Samsung as Samsung used the portrait of a lookalike in a full-page ad that appeared in the New York Times. The ad is well done, you wouldn’t say that it is not Pelé! Moreover, as Samsung probably did not want to have the slightest doubt, it added a picture of a young football player performing the famous Pelé kick.
As Samsung did not have any permission to do this, the claim for damages is 30 million $ (!).
Although the rules might be different in America, Samsung would have a very bad case in the Netherlands. Although not a picture of Pelé himself was shown, there are sufficient elements that refer to Pelé , which is the criteria in the Netherlands. Moreover, Pelé has to have a legitimate interest to object against the portrait used. Since popularity can constitute a legitimate interest, this will not be a major obstacle. So, we wonder whether some Samsung employee has a bad day now.
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