Apple Threatens Legal Action Over Upcoming Steve Jobs Figurine

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Apr 12, 2001
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The Telegraph reports that Apple has threatened legal action against Hong Kong company In Icons, which has been taking pre-orders for a realistic-looking Steve Jobs figurine set to launch next month. The 12-inch figurine, which is being sold for $99.99 plus shipping, is a posable, highly-detailed reproduction of Jobs' likeness wearing his signature black mock turtleneck, blue jeans, and New Balance sneakers.
The legal wrangle is over the likeness of the doll to the late Apple founder, the rights of which the company claims it owns.

Apple reportedly stipulates in a letter to the Chinese manufacturer that any toy that resembles the technology company's logo, person's name, appearance or likeness of its products is a criminal offense.



Personality rights in the United States are addressed on a state-by-state basis, with California's laws covering unauthorized usage of a person's likeness, voice, or signature throughout their lifetime and for a period of 70 years following their death.

Article Link: Apple Threatens Legal Action Over Upcoming Steve Jobs Figurine
 

jonnysods

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Sep 20, 2006
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Soon Apple will be suing people who call their kids Steve or calling employment websites job websites.
 

Macman45

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Jul 29, 2011
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I'm no lawyer. But I can't see how Apple can claim to "Own" the likeness of it's sadly deceased founder. Tasteless? for sure, but if people buy it, then I guess that's life.

Personally, I wouldn't touch it with a barge pole....Kind of creepy.
 

Amazing Iceman

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Nov 8, 2008
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Personality rights in the United States are addressed on a state-by-state basis, with California's laws covering unauthorized usage of a person's likeness, voice, or signature throughout their lifetime and for a period of 70 years following their death.
Does this mean that it cannot be sold in the State of California?
I don't believe California law applies outside California.

Either way, the wrists of the SJ doll look messed up. Even the cheapest Barbie doll rip off has much nicer jointing points.
 

xnu

macrumors 6502
Jul 15, 2004
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Huh

It is a pretty good doll, I mean as far as the likeness....
 

576316

macrumors 601
May 19, 2011
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So, Apple are now claiming to own Steve Jobs' face?

Okay, sure thing, Apple.
 

srxtr

macrumors 6502a
Jul 1, 2010
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Wow from the corner of my eye I thought I was looking at the front cover of the bio.

Looks amazing, but too creepy to buy.
 

johndallas999

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Oct 9, 2008
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Jeeze, is there anything Apple doesn't threaten legal action on these days? This company has gotten a bit rediculous lately, their lawyers probably work harder than their design engineers do!
 

WannaGoMac

macrumors 68020
Feb 11, 2007
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Actually who does own his image rights? Actors have control over use of their names and image, so wouldn't Steve Jobs estate own his?
 

nick_elt

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Hes holding the phone wrong!
 

Consultant

macrumors G5
Jun 27, 2007
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Everybody knew this legal action was coming once the figurine was announced
Yup. Considering that the site says final product might differ, this would be a good thing.


Actually who does own his image rights? Actors have control over use of their names and image, so wouldn't Steve Jobs estate own his?
Probably, but they can assign anything to any lawyer (such as that of Apple's)
 

Eidorian

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Mar 23, 2005
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Does this mean that it cannot be sold in the State of California?
I don't believe California law applies outside California.

Either way, the wrists of the SJ doll look messed up. Even the cheapest Barbie doll rip off has much nicer jointing points.
I recall a segment on either Nightline or 60 Minutes about this law. I believe it was after Michael Jackson's passing.

Not moe enough...
 

takeshi74

macrumors 601
Feb 9, 2011
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Jeeze, is there anything Apple doesn't threaten legal action on these days? This company has gotten a bit rediculous lately, their lawyers probably work harder than their design engineers do!
Not as ridiculous as spelling the word "rediculous". Any company that doesn't aggressively attempt to protect its IP risks losing it.
 

tarasis

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Oct 26, 2007
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I though the figure looked more like Ben Kingsly in a number of shots but generally impressive.

To the person complaining about the wrist joints, you realise you can change the hands? Seething which I believe you can't do with Barbie.
 

longofest

Editor emeritus
Jul 10, 2003
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So Apple owns the rights to what Steve Jobs looked like? That's insane!
I have to agree. I don't claim to be an expert of CEO-Corporation law, but it seems really weird that a company would have the rights to have any say on this matter.

I mean, Steve was also a board member of Disney... What is Disney was in favor of the figurine?

Really, this kind of thing should be in the realm of Steve's estate (i.e. his family). They should have the say on whether or not the figure goes forward or not, and they should get a cut of the profits if it does.
 
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