Posts Tagged ‘likeness’

At 41-years-old, Ed O’Bannon is seen as a legend in the basketball world. Back in his collegiate days, he led UCLA to a national championship. He played two seasons for the New Jersey Nets(now Brooklyn Nets), before a nagging knee injury forced him to leave the NBA and play professionally overseas for many years.

Now, O’Bannon’s name has been in sports headlines for his lawsuit against the NCAA and bringing awareness to the corrupt nature of the collegiate sports powerhouse.

Ed O'Bannon. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

Ed O’Bannon. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

in 2009, O’Bannon noticed his UCLA likeness being used in a college basketball video game without his consent. From there he thought about the profits the NCAA had been making on his behalf without giving any compensation for his talents.

The NCAA claims they maintain his likeness perpetually because of the clause, “forever and throughout the universe” stated in the contractual papers student-athletes sign when they enter college to play a sport. But O’Bannon claims that a 17 or 18 year old kid doesn’t know what he or she is doing by signing a contract of that magnitude with no legal representation.

If the lawsuit ends in favor of O’Bannon and collegiate athletes, the NCAA would be forced to pay billions of dollars in compensation and college sports would have to adopt a market-based model.

Two months ago, a judge ruled that the plaintiffs in O’Bannon’s suit could go for the broadcast revenues. The next court date is June 20 and it will be decided whether the case will go forward as a class action.