Selena Gomez has filed a whopping US$10 million lawsuit against the developers/owners of a mobile game, which is allegedly ripping off her likeness.
Clothes Forever – Styling Game is currently available for iOS on the Apple App Store. It’s developed by Chinese studio Guangzhou Feidong Software Technology Co., with the copyrights owned by UK-based MutantBox Interactive Limited.
Both companies are being sued by Gomez in the lawsuit. Clothes Forever – Styling Game is also one of those exploitative mobile game where players can buy in-game currency (in this case, “diamonds”) for prices ranging from US$.99 up to US$99.99.
The appeal of the game is for young teenage girls to go on virtual shopping trips with celebrities of their choice. Gomez claimed that one of the characters is based on her, and that she has never agreed to have her likeness used in any mobile game.
The lawsuit (via Variety) states:
“Defendants never requested, consulted, or informed Gomez regarding the use of any of her publicity rights in connection with the Game.
Nor, if asked, would Gomez have consented to such use for the Game, which apparently relies on the unsavory practice of luring its users to make in-game purchases in amounts as much as US$99.99 to fund imaginary spending in the Game and unlock features.”
Evidence used in the lawsuit includes a publicity image for the mobile game that has been compared to a near-identical photoshoot picture of Selene Gomez that graced the cover of an issue of Canadian magazine Flare back in 2015.
Adding insult to injury, the lawsuit also describes the mobile game as “bug-riddled” and that it only “rated a measly 3.5 stars out of 5” by reviewers in the Apple App Store. This isn’t even the first time that a game has been sued for allegedly taking the likeness of a celebrity without permission.
The highest-profile case to date remains Lindsay Lohan’s 2014 lawsuit against Rockstar Games for apparently featuring her likeness in one of the loading screens. The case ultimately concluded in the developer’s favour, as the court ruled that images in GTA V were “satirical representations of the style, look and persona of a modern, beach-going young woman”.