Artists Beware: More Dead People Getting Rights of Publicity


They already do, but not in all states. However, as this brief article points out, some states (like Arizona and Massachusetts) are granting certain dead individuals certain “property” rights to their name, likeness, and at times, character. In legalese this is called, post-mortem rights of publicity.

In general, the test is whether the use of a dead person’s name or likeness is being used in a commercial manner. But again, as the same brief article notes, the tricky part comes in teasing out whether or not the secondary use is commercial or not.

If you’re interested in reading more about this, here’s a great website just on this topic, conveniently called, Right of Publicity. Enjoy!

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