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A Student’s View: Displaying a Celebrity‚Äôs Headshot

Displaying Celebrities HeadshotMonica Fernandez, a student in Jon Pfeiffer’s Fall 2013 Mass Communication Law class at Pepperdine University, wrote the following essay in response to the question: You get a signed headshot from a celebrity. Your parents are so excited that they frame the picture and hang it in the lobby of their business. The celebrity’s lawyer demands that your parents take the picture down. What should they be able to do? What would you tell them to do?

Millions of people in today’s society are consumed with the glamorous…

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  • Pepperdine Student Comments , Privacy , Privacy - Right of Publicity
  • Nov 24, 2013

Fame Pays


Jon Pfeiffer is an experienced entertainment and copyright trial attorney practicing in Santa Monica. Jon is also an adjunct professor at Pepperdine University in Malibu, California where he teaches Media Law. COM 570 covers First Amendment issues as well as copyright, defamation and privacy.  

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  • Privacy , Privacy - Right of Publicity , Video
  • Oct 24, 2013

Fame Pays

Fame PaysA celebrity’s name, image and likeness can have great value. In 2005, Pricilla Presley sold the right to use Elvis’ name and likeness to Core Media Group (formerly CKX, Inc.) for $114 million. In 2006, the same company that bought Elvis’ name licensed the right to use Mohammad Ali’s name and likeness for $50 million. Should someone use Elvis’ or Mohammad Ali’s name for commercial purposes without proper authorization, damages would be easier to prove because their value has already been quantified.

In recent years the definition of celebrity has…

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  • Privacy , Privacy - Right of Publicity
  • Oct 09, 2013

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