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Rockstar: Lohan's GTA suit is "for publicity purposes"

Actress's claims dismissed in Rockstar court documents as "frivolous"

Rockstar has made a case for the defence in its lawsuit with the actress Lindsay Lohan, who has accused the Grand Theft Auto developer of using her likeness without permission.

According to the Associated Press, which acquired legal documents filed with a Manhattan court, Rockstar and Take-Two Interactive have argued that Lohan's case was, "filed for publicity purposes." The two companies described the suit as "frivolous", called for its dismissal, and for Lohan to cover their legal fees.

Proceedings started in July this year, when Lohan accused Rockstar of used her likeness, voice and even fashion sense without permission for a character in Grand Theft Auto V: specifically "Lacey Jonas", who Lohan called an "unequivocal" copy.

As we stated at the time, the Digital Media Law Project does not offer much hope for Lohan to be successful in her attempt.

"As a general matter, you will not be held liable for using someone's name or likeness in a creative, entertaining, or artistic work that is transformative, meaning that you add some substantial creative element over and above the mere depiction of the person.

"In other words, the First Amendment ordinarily protects you if you use someone's name or likeness to create something new that is recognizably your own, rather than something that just evokes and exploits the person's identity."

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Latest comments (6)

James Berg Games User Researcher, EA Canada2 years ago
Hopefully this ends up being an expensive publicity stunt.
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Andrew Jakobs Lead Programmer 2 years ago
"Lindsay Lohan" and "Lacey Jonas" are phonetically very much alike, and the character clearly also resembles her in appearance and doings. So Rockstar shouldn't act like nothing's wrong, it's clear they deliberately used her.. Because the way Rockstar reacts to this case I do hope Lohan wins as I really don't like the arrogant stance Rockstar is taking..
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Steve Wetz Reviewer/Assistant Editor, Gamer's Glance2 years ago
I think Rockstar is 100% right, it's completely frivolous. Lacey Jonas looks more like Kate Upton than she does Lindsay Lohan, and even if she did look like Lindsay Lohan, they are still protected because there is difference in the details.

I hope they do award something to Rockstar (if Lohan has somethign to award). Similarity in vowel sound and circumstance does not a likeness violation make.
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Show all comments (6)
Paul Jace Merchandiser 2 years ago
"filed for publicity purposes."
Considering her career is currently in the toilent I'm pretty sure she's mainly doing this for financial purposes. She really needs the money because she blew all her personal finances on....questionable life choices.
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Alex Comer Games Developer 2 years ago
Of course it's her likeness, but that's besides the point: it's satire. Although it's rare in games, comedians and cartoonists use people's likenesses all the time. It is an important medium for free speech. If a court decided for Lohan, it would make satire impossible; it won't happen.
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Gareth Donaghey Customer Support Agent, Blizzard Entertainment2 years ago
I'm balding here and sometimes wear a white t-shirt, think I could sue them for how they made fun out of me with Trevor?
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