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In Plain English: Lohan Loses GTA Lawsuit Appeal

Lindsay Lohan has lost her appeal in New York State Court today in a privacy lawsuit against Take Two.

Lohan sued Take Two Interactive in regards to allegations that the company illegally used her likeness in Grand Theft Auto V. In the game, players assist a celebrity by the name of Lacey Jonas escape the paparazzi. Lohan’s lawyers argued that the Jonas character was a likeness of Lohan’s image and personality and thus constituted an invasion of privacy.

The appeals court ruled that the image of Lacey Jonas constituted an “indistinct, satirical representations of the style, look, and persona of a modern, beach-going young woman” and thus were not recognizable as Lohan. In the ruling, it was also noted that a character in a video game would fall under the laws governing using the likeness of a living person for purposes of selling a product, however the character used in Grand Theft Auto V was not close enough to Lohan to constitute a likeness of her.

“Here, the Jonas character simply is not recognizable as plaintiff inasmuch as it merely is a generic artistic depiction of a “twenty something” woman without any particular identifying physical characteristics. The analysis with respect to the Beach Weather and Stop and Frisk illustrations is the same.”

The court did not address the advertising and trade elements of Lohan’s appeal. The court also struck down the appeal of Karen Gravano against Take Two, a similar case to Lohan’s, citing similarly that the game did not appropriate her likeness when creating the character Andrea Bottino.

(Source: NYS Court of Appeals)

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