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Billboard Magazine cover story on Bob Marley Estate quotes RightOfPublicity.com author Jonathan Faber

February 7, 2011 No Comments »
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Billboard Magazine’s cover story for the newest issue examines the business of Bob Marley not only during his lifetime but also in the decades since his passing.  The piece gives a lot of fascinating insight into the challenges Marley’s family has faced over the years, detailing various lawsuits that have been fought as well as the continuing opportunities that exist for licensing Bob Marley’s music as well as his name and image.

I spoke with the writer of the Billboard cover story and I am quoted in several places throughout the article.  One of the things we discussed in detail is the right of publicity, and how it can be a tough undertaking to protect the legacy of a beloved figure like Marley.  What to do in the face of unauthorized uses like advertisements and merchandise?  Don’t file a lawsuit and the market responds with even more infringements on the basis that the rights are not being asserted.  File a lawsuit, and risk being labeled litigious.

It’s easy to assume that it would be a “nice problem to have,” and maybe there’s some truth to that.  But I also bet that if the average observer who is critical of a family or heir protecting their loved one’s legacy through legal action was in the same position, that person would quite likely do exactly the same thing after witnessing unauthorized (and often undesirable) uses cascade through the marketplace.  What’s that they say about “walk a mile in another man’s shoes…?”

Here is a link to the Billboard story:  http://www.billboard.com/#/features/the-business-of-bob-marley-billboard-cover-1005022242.story?page=1


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