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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 11:28 AM   #1
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Sharapova is now a Trade Mark not a Human Being

The dehumanization of athletes by marketeers and lawyers coninues unabated. Maria's greedy lawyers have invented the legal theory that she's not a human being but a "trade mark" subject to patent law, royalties, etc. Amazing!.The lawyers came up with their pistols drawn on account of a regular documentary on Russian players that obviously included Maria. Only in America! But,hopefully, a common sense Judge will rule in favor of the film makers.
From the New York Times,Nov.25/05:
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) -- A Florida production company has sued tennis star Maria Sharapova over the right to market a documentary about Russian women tennis players.

The federal lawsuit filed Monday claims Sharapova objected to the use of her name and image in the documentary, ''Anna's Army: Behind the Rise of Russian Women's Tennis,'' which was produced by Byzantium Productions, Inc., of West Palm Beach.

The documentary, which includes interviews with players and historical material, has been sold in DVD format since May, in the United States and abroad. It also has been broadcast on television in the U.S. and Russia.

''In this country where we have a First Amendment, we have the right to make documentaries about current events, subjects of interests,'' said attorney L. Martin Reeder, Jr., who represents plaintiff Byzantium.

In late September, an attorney for the agency that represents Sharapova, IMG, and her company, SW19, Inc., sent a letter accusing Byzantium of misappropriating Sharapova's identity, infringing on her company's commercial trademark and legal rights, and on Sharapova's personal rights, privacy rights and common law trademark rights, according to the suit.

''They sent a cease and desist letter demanding that Byzantium stop using her image and name, either in advertising or in the documentary itself, and threatening to sue,'' Reeder said.

Attorney Jonathan C. Koch of Tampa, who represents Sharapova and SW19, Inc. said he was not aware of the lawsuit and couldn't comment.

Sharapova was the first Russian to win the Wimbledon title, and the first ranked ''number one'' on the WTA Tour, according to the suit.
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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 11:43 AM   #2
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She's only a trade mark in the press & media. In her personal life she's a happy, wealthy tennis player.
A lot of these professional athletes aren't even remotely aware of the things said about them outside of their own little world.
I always thought that if I was THAT popular i'd type my name in Google and look up myself in forums like this one - truth is she probably has never even BEEN on a computer in her life. The top athletes, especially in the tennis world where there is no true 'off season' - surround themselves with practice courts, family, a few interviews, & the tournaments.

Maria probably isn't even aware of the DVD or documentary. It's probably her huge troup/posse.
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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 11:56 AM   #3
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I can confirm Maria has been on a computer before...and has read forums...not necessarily this one though Her management company is more than likely the major player in looking out for her 'legal and trademark rights', I havent seen comment from Maria so its hard to say what her view is.
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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 12:04 PM   #4
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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 12:13 PM   #5
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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 12:17 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cris Senior
The dehumanization of athletes by marketeers and lawyers coninues unabated. Maria's greedy lawyers have invented the legal theory that she's not a human being but a "trade mark" subject to patent law, royalties, etc. Amazing!.The lawyers came up with their pistols drawn on account of a regular documentary on Russian players that obviously included Maria. Only in America! But,hopefully, a common sense Judge will rule in favor of the film makers.
From the New York Times,Nov.25/05:
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) -- A Florida production company has sued tennis star Maria Sharapova over the right to market a documentary about Russian women tennis players.

The federal lawsuit filed Monday claims Sharapova objected to the use of her name and image in the documentary, ''Anna's Army: Behind the Rise of Russian Women's Tennis,'' which was produced by Byzantium Productions, Inc., of West Palm Beach.

The documentary, which includes interviews with players and historical material, has been sold in DVD format since May, in the United States and abroad. It also has been broadcast on television in the U.S. and Russia.

''In this country where we have a First Amendment, we have the right to make documentaries about current events, subjects of interests,'' said attorney L. Martin Reeder, Jr., who represents plaintiff Byzantium.

In late September, an attorney for the agency that represents Sharapova, IMG, and her company, SW19, Inc., sent a letter accusing Byzantium of misappropriating Sharapova's identity, infringing on her company's commercial trademark and legal rights, and on Sharapova's personal rights, privacy rights and common law trademark rights, according to the suit.

''They sent a cease and desist letter demanding that Byzantium stop using her image and name, either in advertising or in the documentary itself, and threatening to sue,'' Reeder said.

Attorney Jonathan C. Koch of Tampa, who represents Sharapova and SW19, Inc. said he was not aware of the lawsuit and couldn't comment.

Sharapova was the first Russian to win the Wimbledon title, and the first ranked ''number one'' on the WTA Tour, according to the suit.
Welcome to "open" tennis. This is nothing new. Ask the corporate bigwigs behind ChrisAmerica and the tennis boom of the mid-70s how this happened. While you're at it, rub a bit-o-polish on the old guy's head and make three wishes:

1. That the standard size frame returns to professional tennis;
2. That the industry that expoits women as nothing more than sex objects gives way to promoting women as athletes; and
3. That the classic game of tennis makes a big comeback.

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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 01:02 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dan23
I can confirm Maria has been on a computer before and has read forums
Come on. maybe before she was a pro.

Don't tell me, you saw a someones user name that said "Maria S" ??!!
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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 01:02 PM   #8
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I can understand the rich and famous trying to protect their names, unfortunately, with someone making a documentary Maria and her people probably don't have any case.
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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 01:06 PM   #9
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This is crazy.
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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 01:15 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MisterMan
Come on. maybe before she was a pro.

Don't tell me, you saw a someones user name that said "Maria S" ??!!
what do you think?
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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 02:01 PM   #11
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*chuckling at her company being called SW19 Inc*
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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 02:02 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by SJW
*chuckling at her company being called SW19 Inc*
you should have seen me when I first read about Aneres I mean, how much closer could you be to you know what?
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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 02:17 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by tenn_ace
you should have seen me when I first read about Aneres I mean, how much closer could you be to you know what?
go onto the roof of your tallest building and walk right off.
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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 02:29 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SJW
go onto the roof of your tallest building and walk right off.
with the name like Aneres, she should
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Old Nov 30th, 2005, 02:35 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tenn_ace
with the name like Aneres, she should
your fascination and obsession with her is somewhat sickening. in case you failed to realise this thread is about Maria Sharapova. Serena has nothing to do with this so stop being such a ****. comment on the content or fuck off. i chuckled because calling her company "SW19 Inc" is really cute.
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