Maroon 5's Levine Sues Over Band Hero Avatar

August 5, 2011 -

Activision's Band Hero is the focus of a new lawsuit filed by Maroon 5 front man and coach on NBC's hit reality series "The Voice" Adam Levine.

Levine filed the lawsuit in Los Angeles Superior Court on Thursday, claiming that the game exploits his name and likeness beyond what he had agreed to when he signed his deal with Activision. According to the suit Levine inked a deal to allow Activision to use the Maroon 5 song "She Will Be Loved" for the game, and performed the song for motion-capture so his avatar could be created.

Band Hero allows that Levine avatar to sing along to 60 other songs by other musicians, which "would not have been chosen by him for recordings or performances." The feature also lets users make Levine's avatar sing the songs in voices other than his own, "including female voices."

The suit alleges that Activision sought permission from other artists for the expanded useand  paid other artists a higher fee than he received to participate in the game. Levine is suing for fraudulent inducement, breach of contract, violation of the common-law right of publicity, and unfair business acts or practices. He is seeking unspecified damages.

You may recall that Courtney Love, the widow of Kurt Cobain, railed against Activision because Guitar Hero 5 allowed the Cobain avatar to sings songs other than his own.

Source: Gamasutra by way E. Zachary Knight

 


Comments

Re: Maroon 5's Levine Sues Over Band Hero Avatar

No Doubt sued Activision for the same thing.  Although, they were a bit more timely with their suit.

 

Andrew Eisen

Re: Maroon 5's Levine Sues Over Band Hero Avatar

Sorry, didn't Band Hero come out something like a hundred years ago? Surely there should be a time limit on this sort of thing.

/b

Re: Maroon 5's Levine Sues Over Band Hero Avatar

What a wuss. He sold his likeness to be used in the game, if Activision wants to allow players to stick him in a dress and sing "girls just wanna have fun" they should be able to do whatever they want. He gave them a picture of himself, he has no control over what that fan does with it once they take it home, even if it's unpleasant.

-Austin from Oregon

Feel free to check out my blog.

Re: Maroon 5's Levine Sues Over Band Hero Avatar

That is easy for you to say. As a famous musician his very image has value. He allowed his likeness to be used in Guitar Hero in exchange for a fee, the way his likeness could be used was spelled out in his contract. If his contract was violated by the way his likeness was used not only can he sue but he SHOULD sue. They are trading on his and other artist's fame. There is value in that. There may be more value in allowing the use of the avatar with other songs. If so they need to pay for that and stipulate those uses in the contract, not contract for one thing and then turn around and do another, hoping the artist just won't notice or care. That is BS. Here in America you need to pay to play, you want to increase your product's value by trading on someone else's value? Then pay the man.

"He gave them a picture of himself, he has no control over what that fan does with it once they take it home, even if it's unpleasant."

He has total control. His deal was not with the fans of guitar hero, it was with the developer of Guitar Hero. If they went further than what was stipulated in his contract they need to pay.

Re: Maroon 5's Levine Sues Over Band Hero Avatar

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InfophileFor reference, see https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/accountable - It just means you have to answer for it. It has nothing to do with being punished for it.07/30/2015 - 1:47am
Mattsworknameohh, gods that game is pretty, just not my style these days07/29/2015 - 11:49pm
Andrew EisenUbisoft's Child of Light.07/29/2015 - 11:45pm
MattsworknameEnjoy man, Im gonna be playing split second myself07/29/2015 - 11:45pm
Andrew EisenSorry. That just slipped out. Off to play.07/29/2015 - 11:43pm
Andrew EisenWords have meanings, people! Use the damn dictionary! They're online! They're free! Arrggghhhh!07/29/2015 - 11:42pm
Andrew EisenThis is just depressing. I'm gonna go play video games.07/29/2015 - 11:42pm
Mattsworknameproliferation of the whole "internet movment" thing, people dont debate, they try to attack and go after peole to shut them down, casue it's easier then trying to debate the issues07/29/2015 - 11:39pm
MattsworknameWhen you break it down, what it is is the shifting of the media lanscape and how it effects news sites and other groups. once upon a time, you could have run that same article and it would have created debate, not online campagns, now, cause of the07/29/2015 - 11:38pm
MattsworknameCall it waht you wil, but thats how its viewed, not just by me, but by just about EVERYONE right now. Media, new networks, they dont' want to call it what it is, soe they call it "accountability"07/29/2015 - 11:34pm
Andrew Eisen"Gamasutra... had to pay" Yes. That's EXACTLY what it was. "Accountability" is and always was horse poop.07/29/2015 - 11:29pm
MattsworknameSo to speak07/29/2015 - 11:28pm
MattsworknameThats why this happened, you get people who felt hurt, marginalize, bettrayd, or otherwise offended, and they don't actually look at teh facts, they just attack and try to get there Blood for Blood07/29/2015 - 11:28pm
Mattsworknamefalse. Weather you think the article was right or not, there was a large group who felt taht gamastura and the other media sites had to pay for there actions, weather they deserved it or not07/29/2015 - 11:27pm
Andrew EisenTrying to yank advertising over a single opinion piece on a site that I would bet money most of the offended (if you will) didn't read, is no more an attempt at accountability than the Brown shooting's subsequent riots.07/29/2015 - 11:27pm
MattsworknameMy point andrew is that it's not about them, its about the people responding to the situation. THe brown shooting was eventually shown to be completely justified, but the "Black lives matter" meme kept on rolling despite all it's intiall claims being07/29/2015 - 11:26pm
Andrew EisenDude, you're comparing an opinion piece with someone who was shot to death. Gamasutra and Alexander already were accountable for the opinion piece in question.07/29/2015 - 11:25pm
Mattsworknamekinds of events. nor has it stopped them from being asshats in my opinion, but in there view, they have to hold someone accountible for recent events, so they are doing what they think they must, even if it's based on falsehoods07/29/2015 - 11:22pm
MattsworknameAndrew: It's really a matter of context for the people involved. For example. The "Black lives matter" thing is based on an entirely false account of events in the brown shooting, but that hasnt' stopped it from triyng to hold Polititcians accountable for07/29/2015 - 11:22pm
Andrew EisenWouldn't surprise me. A lot of words' actual meanings escape many people on the internet.07/29/2015 - 11:17pm
 

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