The daily fantasy sports operators won a class action lawsuit against three college football players.
US.- The biggest daily fantasy sports (DFS) operators in the United States, DraftKings and FanDuel, won a US$5 million action lawsuit against three college football players for using players likenesses in DFS games throughout their services.
The three former football players from Illinois University, Akeem Daniels, Nicholas Stoner and Cameron Stingily, filed the lawsuit against the DFS giants back in 2016 as they claimed that the companies used their names and likenesses without their permission. Whilst the companies don’t offer college-based DFS contests anymore as they signes an agreement with the NCAA in March of last year, at the time the lawsuit was files they featured real world college football and basketball teams.
The players said that the use of the information violated Indiana’s law right of publicity, as it states that a person may not use an aspect of a personality’s right of publicity for a commercial purpose during the personality’s lifetime or for 100 years after the date of the personality’s death without having obtained previous written consent. Nevertheless, the companies claimed that the likenesses were exempt from the Indiana statute and highlighted the First Amendment of the Constitution.
“The Court has determined that at least two of the statutory exceptions to Ind. Code § 32- 36-1-8(a) apply, which removes Defendants conduct from coverage under Indiana’s right of publicity statute. For the reasons explained in this Entry, the Defendants’ Motions to Dismiss, (Filing No. 26; Filing No. 28), are granted and Plaintiffs’ Motion for Leave to File Surreply (Filing No. 60) is denied as moot,” said US District Court judge for the southern district of Indiana, Tanya Pratt.