Lindsay Lohan Won't Put Her GTA5 Lawsuit Out Of Its Misery

from the game-not-over dept

Here is something you, the dear Techdirt reader, may not have known about me: I had always thought that there was only one proper spelling for the name "Lindsey." I'm not sure why I thought that, but I was certain that name was only spelled with an "e" before the "y." But, it turns out, spelling it as "Lindsay" is a perfectly common and accepted alternate spelling for the name. And the only reason that I now know that is because Linsday, with an "a," Lohan will not let her lawsuit against Take-Two Interactive -- for appropriating her likeness for several characters, which didn't actually happen -- die its final death.

First, a refresher. Lohan decided that a side quest character in Grand Theft Auto 5, which was actually an amalgam of several Hollywood starlet tropes, violated her publicity rights. She also claimed that an entirely different character that was used on some of the game's marketing and packaging was also her and also violated her publicity rights. The case wove its way through the past half-decade, largely with the court and Take-Two casting narrow eyes at the mountains of paperwork Lohan's legal team was able to produce while somehow maintaining an inability to come up with claims that were in any way credible, before the court finally tossed the lawsuit entirely. The court at the time made it clear that Take-Two's characters weren't direct appropriations of Lohan's likeness and that the parody amalgam starlet it had created was clearly protected by the First Amendment.

But, for some reason, it appears that LiLo's legal team was, like, "nuh uh!"

Lindsay Lohan has been granted an appeal in her lawsuit against the maker of the Grand Theft Auto video games. Last year, the Appellate Division Courthouse of New York State tossed the case, stating it was without merit. Her appeal was accepted by the New York Court of Appeals on 16 February.

It must be nice to have the kind of money required to keep the legal team going on a lawsuit that's been a loser at every turn. Still, it's perplexing that this lawsuit hasn't been put out of its misery at this point. The nature of the characters and their status as protected speech seems as clear cut as it gets. And, perhaps more importantly, the character that Lohan is desperate to associate herself with for the purposes of this lawsuit is one that is depicted engaging in sex acts in a public setting and being photographed doing so. I'm struggling to understand why one would want to engage in this kind of legal reach under those circumstances.

Her legal staff should be informing her that it's time to give this whole thing the Ol' Yeller treatment. Why they aren't doing so is beyond me.


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  • icon
    Anonymous Anonymous Coward (profile), 23 Feb 2017 @ 3:55pm

    Catastrophic removal of a likeness

    I think it might be better if somebody, anybody appropriated Lindsay (with an a) Lohan's likeness and did something destructive to it. Not that Lindsay (with an a) hasn't already done many destructive things with her likeness. Lindsay (with an a) would be better off (well maybe not her bank account) and the world would be better off, (most certainly their bank accounts).

    Before Lindsay (with an a) Lohan's lawyers get all litigious on anyone else, this is an OPINION, no matter how much the target deserves like opinions.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    TKnarr (profile), 23 Feb 2017 @ 4:26pm

    Her legal staff should be informing her that it's time to give this whole thing the Ol' Yeller treatment. Why they aren't doing so is beyond me.

    Telling her it's time to quit would mean the end of their being paid for the case. They're confident the courts won't penalize them for aiding in the pursuit of a meritless case, so they won't put their paychecks at risk.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Lawrence D’Oliveiro, 23 Feb 2017 @ 4:43pm

    She’s Not The ...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • This comment has been flagged by the community. Click here to show it
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Feb 2017 @ 5:57pm

    Out of all topics in the world, your notions on spelling and update on Lindsay Lohan?

    You've reached depths where can be fined for calling yourself a "writer".

    These few lame stories ain't gonna cut the ketchup. Get out now, Geigner, Techdirt is sinking.

    Here's one infinitely more important off Drudge: GOOGLE SUES UBER OVER DRIVERLESS TECH!!! -- OMFG! Masnick's head is going to explode!

    But it's just another story to ignore. He/you are already busy ignoring that AdRoll this week broke contract with InfoWars specifically to suppress its political opinions. You only support "free speech" that you agree with.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 23 Feb 2017 @ 7:16pm

      Re: Out of all topics in the world, your notions on spelling and update on Lindsay Lohan?

      Where can we read your blog?

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      orbitalinsertion (profile), 23 Feb 2017 @ 7:16pm

      Re: Out of all topics in the world, your notions on spelling and update on Lindsay Lohan?

      Oh. They keep telling me InfoWars is factual. It's political opinion?

      But hey, thanks for letting us know what we will be leaving techdirt over, in droves.

      Have fun cutting and snorting your ketchup.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 23 Feb 2017 @ 9:13pm

      Re: Out of all topics in the world, your notions on spelling and update on Lindsay Lohan?

      Techdirt is sinking.

      Yet, here you are... still. Go on! Save yourself! Don't endanger yourself for us, we're goners!

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Dark Helmet (profile), 24 Feb 2017 @ 4:15am

      Re: Out of all topics in the world, your notions on spelling and update on Lindsay Lohan?

      "He/you are already busy ignoring that AdRoll this week broke contract with InfoWars specifically to suppress its political opinions."

      Oh, I see: you're a crazy person. A crazy person that doesn't understand what and to whom the First Amendment and free speech protections actually apply. Hint: an ad agency can conduct business with whomever it wants, and it can certainly exclude a bunch of whiny, sycophantic tin-pot wearing conspiracy theorists that cannot even come up with good fake conspiracies and mostly hide under their mother's bed from its customer roll if it so chooses.

      And you're here WHINING about that in the name of free speech? Dingus, the business has free speech rights to, and not doing business with your favorite bullshit-peddler is one of them. So you're not only crazy and ignorant, you're a hypocrite to boot. Go away. I'll enjoy my "sinking ship". I'm sure you Ron Paul video to watch or something....

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Digitari, 24 Feb 2017 @ 4:31am

        Re: Re: Out of all topics in the world, your notions on spelling and update on Lindsay Lohan?

        as long as they are NOT LGBQT xyz what ever... Right? You are being a Hypocrite Tim. and You are my hero on here.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • icon
          Dark Helmet (profile), 24 Feb 2017 @ 6:33am

          Re: Re: Re: Out of all topics in the world, your notions on spelling and update on Lindsay Lohan?

          "as long as they are NOT LGBQT xyz what ever... Right? You are being a Hypocrite Tim. and You are my hero on here."

          What in the sweet hell are you talking about?!??! I'm someone who has screamed to the sky that businesses should be allowed to discriminate against the LGBT community as loudly as I can. I'm in no way a hypocrite on that topic. I've even written about in these very pages and addressed why I think they should be allowed to do so, specifically back when Mike Pence was mincing around his state thinking he was being Jesus-y....

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

          • identicon
            Michael, 24 Feb 2017 @ 11:28am

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Out of all topics in the world, your notions on spelling and update on Lindsay Lohan?

            Tim, please stop adding logic and facts to an argument that is clearly about whining and feelings being hurt.

            reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        I.T. Guy, 24 Feb 2017 @ 8:34am

        Re: Re: Out of all topics in the world, your notions on spelling and update on Lindsay Lohan?

        "I'm sure you Ron Paul video to watch or something"
        Calm down there little fellah. [Pictures DH frantically typing on the keyboard to quickly post his childish insults.]

        "it can certainly exclude a bunch of whiny, sycophantic tin-pot wearing conspiracy theorists that cannot even come up with good fake conspiracies and mostly hide under their mother's bed from its customer roll if it so chooses."

        C'mon DH... you had help with this one; Didn't ya bruh? Is Whatever on the payroll now?

        Who hacked the DH account?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 24 Feb 2017 @ 6:30am

      Re: Out of all topics in the world, your notions on spelling and update on Lindsay Lohan?

      So its report only on things I care about or you don't support free speech. You maybe want to write a second draft of your little "essay" there, chum.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      PaulT (profile), 28 Feb 2017 @ 12:40am

      Re: Out of all topics in the world, your notions on spelling and update on Lindsay Lohan?

      "Here's one infinitely more important off Drudge"

      "Stop writing what you want to write about on your blog!!!! Write about exactly what I'm reading on other blogs!!! You should not have original ideas, you must copy others!!!!!!!!"

      You guys are reliably insane, as ever.

      "OMFG! Masnick's head is going to explode! "

      You're hallucinating again - Masnick did not write this article.

      "You only support "free speech" that you agree with."

      The only person opposing free speech is you, whining about how others are exercising it. The article you're having a breakdown over is actually in defence of free speech, which is under attack from Lohan. So, not only insane but actually living in a different reality. Always entertaining.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    tux, 23 Feb 2017 @ 6:11pm

    LiLo

    Thanks Timothy. You've just replaced my boot loader with the likeness of a Hollywood starlet, and now I can't boot my computer.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That Anonymous Coward (profile), 23 Feb 2017 @ 6:17pm

    I'm still somebody!!!
    Pay attention to me!!!
    My whole they made me remove my headscarf makes me a posterchild for muslim intolerance!!!
    Oh that didn't work??
    Fire up that lawsuit again!!!

    While her entire suit is pretty much meritless, it pretty much sums up the uncontrolled IP rights expansion.
    Someone might think this is me, so I have the right to get paid for it.
    I have the right to control anything that I imagine has to do with me, despite all of the evidence to the contrary.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 24 Feb 2017 @ 5:58am

      Re:

      While her entire suit is pretty much meritless, it pretty much sums up the uncontrolled IP rights expansion.

      Abolish IP. It's wrong and dangerous.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Wendy Cockcroft, 24 Feb 2017 @ 7:20am

        Re: Re:

        Eh, sort of. We need to stop thinking of anything connected with creation or performance or "image" as property.

        This is not a problem the government can solve without giving up a load of sweet, sweet lobby emoluments.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    orbitalinsertion (profile), 23 Feb 2017 @ 7:11pm

    Lohan decided that a side quest character in Grand Theft Auto 5, which was actually an amalgam of several Hollywood starlet tropes, violated her publicity rights.

    Because she is an amalgam of tropes. It's just too close...

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Feb 2017 @ 7:37pm

    Compare to Vanna White

    I can't find the Lohan court documents, but there is a distinction between likeness and publicity, as shown in the case of Vanna White.


    https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/White_v._Samsung_Electronics_America,_Inc./En_banc_Opinion

    The district judge quite reasonably held that, because Samsung didn’t use White’s name, likeness, voice or signature, it didn’t violate her right of publicity.

    Not so, says the panel majority: The California right of publicity can’t possibly be limited to name and likeness. If it were, the majority reasons, a “clever advertising strategist” could avoid using White’s name or likeness but nevertheless remind people of her with impunity,
    “effectively eviscerat[ing]” her rights. To prevent this “evisceration,” the panel majority holds that the right of publicity must extend beyond name and likeness, to any “appropriation” of White’s “identity"—anything that “evoke[s]” her personality.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    That One Guy (profile), 23 Feb 2017 @ 7:59pm

    "That's is me, that is absolutely me! ... wait, why are you saying that I would ever do that?!"

    And, perhaps more importantly, the character that Lohan is desperate to associate herself with for the purposes of this lawsuit is one that is depicted engaging in sex acts in a public setting and being photographed doing so. I'm struggling to understand why one would want to engage in this kind of legal reach under those circumstances.

    The funny thing is, while people may not have associated her with those sorts of things before this lawsuit, after spending years telling the courts how similar the character is with her she really has no grounds to complain if people make that connection now.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      zerosaves (profile), 23 Feb 2017 @ 8:03pm

      Re: "That's is me, that is absolutely me! ... wait, why are you saying that I would ever do that?!"

      "Look, that dirty whore characters actions were based entirely on me, and I'll prove it in court!"

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 23 Feb 2017 @ 8:13pm

    Same reason why Perfect 10 goes after websites.

    Rich idiots have money to burn, and they're in control of our judicial system. They're not getting out of it until they've forced out the result they want.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Spem, 24 Feb 2017 @ 1:18am

    Hot litigation action

    I'm sure the granting of the appeal has nothing to do with the various protagonists (doubtless mainly male) hoping that they'll get to meet La Logan in the flesh at some point in the proceedings.

    ps I thought Lindsay with an a was the male spelling (or was it the tori spelling?).

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 24 Feb 2017 @ 6:09am

    if they make money off her, then pay up. after all, it is commercial venture.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    Vidiot (profile), 24 Feb 2017 @ 6:30am

    ... "Lindsay" is a perfectly common and accepted alternate spelling...

    Here in MURRICA, we spell names any damn way we please, buddy boy.

    https://wehavekids.com/parenting/How-Many-Ways-Can-You-Spell-Lindsay-Lindsey-Linsy-Lyndsey

    (At least 15 alternates.)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    I.T. Guy, 24 Feb 2017 @ 8:22am

    "one that is depicted engaging in sex acts in a public setting and being photographed doing so."

    This is a case of art imitating life.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    UniKyrn, 24 Feb 2017 @ 12:51pm

    Lindsay Who? Wasn't that one of Henson's Muppet's that never got used because it couldn't be taken seriously, even by the puppeteers? :)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    justin, 16 Mar 2017 @ 7:47am

    sounds like someone needs to get over themselves!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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