When are celebrities going to learn that posting selfies on Instagram is perfectly cool, but posting a paparazzi pic of themselves is a surefire way to get sued?
Emily Ratajkowski is the latest star to get hit by a copyright infringement lawsuit for posting a photo of herself, taken by a professional photographer, on social media.
According to court documents obtained by The Blast, Ratajkowski, 28, and her company, Emrata Holdings Inc., are being sued by paparazzo Robert O’Neil.
According to O’Neil’s suit, he alleges that Ratajkowski posted a photo he took of her in New York City on her Instagram Story, in which she’s carrying a large potted plant, obscuring her face. She captioned the pic, “Mood Forever.”
O’Neil claims that Ratajkowski neither licensed the photo nor attained permission or consent to post it on social media to her 24 million followers.
“Defendants infringed Plaintiff’s copyright in the Photograph by reproducing and publicly displaying the Photograph on the Website,” states O’Neil’s lawsuit. “Defendants are not, and has never been, licensed or otherwise authorized to reproduce, publically display, distribute and/or use the Photograph.”
In the suit, O’Neil is seeking damages of up to $150,000 in addition to all profits that she earned from his photo.
Ratajkowski isn’t the first celebrity to be hit with a similar lawsuit by O’Neil; last month, he sued Gigi Hadid in a near-identical lawsuit after she posted one of the photographer’s pics of her ex-boyfriend Zayn Malik on her social media.