image rights definition

Published by a LexisNexis IP expert

What does image rights mean?

The term ‘image rights’ is used to refer to an individual’s proprietary rights in their personality and the ability to exploit, and to prevent unauthorised third parties from making use of, an individual’s persona, including their name, nickname, image, likeness, signature and other indicia that are inextricably connected with that individual. A number of jurisdictions have specific laws preventing the use of a person’s personality for commercial purposes, including the US, France and Germany. Guernsey has even taken the unique step of establishing a registered image right. The UK, however, does not have any codified or consolidated legislation that confers such protection. Under English law, an aggrieved celebrity will have to piece together a cause of action to prevent the unauthorised use of their image from a patchwork of statutes, common law, IP rights and regulatory protections.

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