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Miami, FL Law Blog for Entertainment Law, Business Law, and Public Interest

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Celebrities Challenge the Unauthorized Use of Photos of Their Children

Celebrity couple Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard are among the latest celebrities who are firing back at the paparazzi and the publications they sell photos to regarding the aggressive ways in which they attempt to snap photos of celebrity children and the unauthorized use of those images in print and web news outlets.

In January, Bell and Shepard wrote tweets encouraging consumers to boycott publications that buy paparazzi-generated pictures of celebrities' children without the consent of their parents.  Days later, Shepard authored a Huffington Post piece outlining the reasons behind their cause.

Due in part to Bell and Shepard's statements, celeb websites Just Jared and People magazine pledged that that won't run paparazzi photos of celebrities' children who are not famous in their own right.

"Recent discussions I’ve had with actresses ... Kristen Bell, prompted me to take the next step at Just Jared by suspending the use of unauthorized photos of celebrities’ children throughout our sites...we won’t be posting photos of children of public figures without consent."

There will still be photos of kids in these publications, but only when famous parents choose to share them via exclusive spreads or other agreements. What this means is that Just Jared and People won't be publishing pictures of celebrity kids outside of school or at the park for now on.

In September of 2013 Halle Berry and Jennifer Garner championed California legislation that was created to restrict the threatening behavior exhibited by photographers towards the stars' children. Though the California Newspaper Publishers' Association and the National Press Photographers Association opposed the bill, it still passed, as the measure was written with first amendment concerns in mind. According to the senator who presented the legislation, the bill mandates increased penalties for anyone who attempts to take pictures or recordings in a manner that "seriously alarms, annoys, torments, or terrorizes" them.

If you are a member of the entertainment community who is interested in pursuing damages for the unauthorized use of an image or images, you can count on us to fight for your rights. Give our Miami, Florida office a call at 305-341-3100 for legal guidance.


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