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NBA 2K17 News Post


It appears the folks at 2K won a major legal challenge against the use of tattoos in NBA 2K16:

Quote:
2K and parent company Take-Two can breath a sigh of relief following the dismissal of some requested damages in a lawsuit that might have cost the company billions. A case brought by tattoo designer Solid Oak Sketches attempted to secure statutory damages of $150,000 per infringement for unauthorized use of eight designs in NBA 2K16.

United States district judge Laura Taylor Swan granted 2Ks motion to dismiss statutory based on timing of the design copyright. The first use of the tattoo images was in 2013s NBA 2K14. The designs were not copyrighted until 2015.

As we reported on back in February, this suit is exactly why other games don't really use player tattoos unless they are fully licensed.

2K won this challenge on a technicality, which could have cost Take Two upwards of a billion dollars in damages. However, it is likely that tattoos in NBA 2K (and other sports games) will continue to grow scarcer due to copyright and licensing issues.

Take Two is still potentially on the hook for some damages in the case so they aren't out of the woods yet, however the total damages they may have been on the hook for has lessened considerably after today's ruling.

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Member Comments
# 1 sane478 @ 08/03/16 05:38 PM
You would think one would appreciate the free advertising. I guess I get it though.


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# 2 Vni @ 08/03/16 05:42 PM
Shouldn't tattoos become the player's property ? I don't really get it. It's on their body, most likely they've decided what they wanted to draw on their body, I don't get why do the tattoo artists own them.
 
# 3 sane478 @ 08/03/16 05:44 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vni
Shouldn't tattoos become the player's property ? I don't really get it. It's on their body, most likely they've decided what they wanted to draw on their body, I don't get why do the tattoo artists own them.


Yea that whole concept seems confusing to me, unless it's a original design they drew and the artist wanted it.


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# 4 CM Hooe @ 08/03/16 05:50 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Vni
Shouldn't tattoos become the player's property ? I don't really get it. It's on their body, most likely they've decided what they wanted to draw on their body, I don't get why do the tattoo artists own them.
The intellectual property of the art which comprises the tattoo still belongs to the artist.

A second artist may not recreate that art in another medium (in this case, a texture for a video game) and then sell it for a profit; that's infringing on the original artist's intellectual property rights.
 
# 5 gabs485 @ 08/03/16 05:59 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by CM Hooe
The intellectual property of the art which comprises the tattoo still belongs to the artist.

A second artist may not recreate that art in another medium (in this case, a texture for a video game) and then sell it for a profit; that's infringing on the original artist's intellectual property rights.
This is why I don't like lawyers. They are the only ones trying to make money off these lawsuits.

I understand the legality but still, there's no way the use of the tattoos in the game caused any harm to anyone, not physically or economically.

Also, doesn't 2k has the right to use player likeness in the game? I thought tattoos were part of someone's likeness. This is getting ridiculous.

What's next? Are barbers going to start suing too? I can see Lebron's barber being like I gave him his signature hairline, you can't copy it! It's my creation.

Get outta here, someone needs to put a stop to this none sense.
 
# 6 CM Hooe @ 08/03/16 06:01 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by gabs485
I understand the legality but still, there's no way the use of the tattoos in the game caused any harm to anyone, not physically or economically.
The original artist of the tattoo is being directly harmed in this case; 2K Sports is making money off his art work without compensating him.

Quote:
Also, doesn't 2k has the right to use player likeness in the game? I thought tattoos were part of someone's likeness.
The courts have repeatedly decided that this is not the case.
 
# 7 NDAlum @ 08/03/16 06:08 PM
So this isn't really even a victory, it's a technicality.

I understand but I still hate it.
 
# 8 wallofhate @ 08/03/16 06:12 PM
Funny thing is that there isn't a tattoo artist out there that wouldn't tattoo a Disney,marvel or dc character. If one of those entities started going after the tattoo artists they'd be crying corporate hatred and complaints of big business bothering the "lil guy". I get it they "can" sue but I grow tired of silly lawsuits that coattail off of bigger cases that are actually significant. I watch a video about lawyers suing app makers because they own the patent to making apps not copying the same type of app but they own the idea of an app smh.
 
# 9 Junior Moe @ 08/03/16 06:19 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by wallofhate
Funny thing is that there isn't a tattoo artist out there that wouldn't tattoo a Disney,marvel or dc character. If one of those entities started going after the tattoo artists they'd be crying corporate hatred and complaints of big business bothering the "lil guy". I get it they "can" sue but I grow tired of silly lawsuits that coattail off of bigger cases that are actually significant. I watch a video about lawyers suing app makers because they own the patent to making apps not copying the same type of app but they own the idea of an app smh.
Wow! That's a good point. I wonder if I got Mickey Mouse tatted on my arm could Disney sue the tattoo artist. That's interesting...
 
# 10 King_B_Mack @ 08/03/16 06:26 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Junior Moe
Wow! That's a good point. I wonder if I got Mickey Mouse tatted on my arm could Disney sue the tattoo artist. That's interesting...
I'm sure that they could, but the costs of even filing the lawsuits, time put in on the case by the lawyers, tracking down whatever artist tattooed it, etc probably makes it not even close to worth it for a company like Disney.
 
# 11 tril @ 08/03/16 06:28 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by wallofhate
Funny thing is that there isn't a tattoo artist out there that wouldn't tattoo a Disney,marvel or dc character. If one of those entities started going after the tattoo artists they'd be crying corporate hatred and complaints of big business bothering the "lil guy". I get it they "can" sue but I grow tired of silly lawsuits that coattail off of bigger cases that are actually significant. I watch a video about lawyers suing app makers because they own the patent to making apps not copying the same type of app but they own the idea of an app smh.
true but alot of legal tattoo parlors do not do "disney or other copyrighted or trademarked characters".. without having legal consent....wink wink!!!
 
# 12 NINJAK2 @ 08/03/16 06:34 PM
This whole issue is very annoying to me. It's like these tattoo artists own a part of theses athletes.
 
# 13 McG @ 08/03/16 07:00 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by CM Hooe
The original artist of the tattoo is being directly harmed in this case; 2K Sports is making money off his art work without compensating him.



The courts have repeatedly decided that this is not the case.
Really? Who bought 2K for tattoos? It's cool that they are included, but I'd be willing to bet that less than 1% of the people that bought the game, did it because the players have tattoos. 2K isn't making money off the tattoo(s) featured on players, they are making money from the game that they produced. A game in which they have the purchased the rights to make. It's sad and extremely petty that these "tattoo artists" are looking for a hand out from 2K. That just goes to show you how great they are at their job.
 
# 14 Trackball @ 08/03/16 07:16 PM
Look, guys, I totally get the desire for visual authenticity. I get it.

But if minor visual details like tattoos are going to result in lawsuits like this, then it's not really worth putting them in the game, is it?

I'd much rather have an inkless game that plays awesome than a visually-perfect game that plays like Superman 64.
 
# 15 sane478 @ 08/03/16 07:18 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Trackball
Look, guys, I totally get the desire for visual authenticity. I get it.



But if minor visual details like tattoos are going to result in lawsuits like this, then it's not really worth putting them in the game, is it?



I'd much rather have an inkless game that plays awesome than a visually-perfect game that plays like Superman 64.


I think we all feel the same way as you just stating how stupid it is.


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# 16 ksteward84 @ 08/03/16 07:33 PM
An interesting part is that WWE 2K is usually super detailed about tattoos (or I'm just not paying close enough attention)
 
# 17 mcpats @ 08/03/16 07:46 PM
How is 2k liable and not the players and/or players union. Isn't that point of purchasing the rights from a union? You can recreate the player's likeness whether it's hairstyle, freckles, scars, or tattoos. Isn't it up to the players and the union to let 2k know if there are any specific barriers to recreating said players? I think it falls on the players and their representatives to present a 'clean' license to their business partner
 
# 18 badazzleroybrown @ 08/03/16 07:58 PM
any pro athlete just needs to make up a form that states that they have all rights to the art work
or if it is not a original then that they have the right for it to be used. i just see it as a bunch of nobody tattoo artists trying to get something for nothing. next it will be the people who make the ink saying they are being infringed upon
does this stuff ever end
 
# 19 ChaseB @ 08/03/16 08:50 PM
I feel like a lot of the "this is stupid" comments come from a place of wanting the video game to be authentic rather than disagreeing with the thought process. Which, hey, that's fine, but at least just be up front about that.
 
# 20 BluFu @ 08/03/16 08:58 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChaseB
I feel like a lot of the "this is stupid" comments come from a place of wanting the video game to be authentic rather than disagreeing with the thought process. Which, hey, that's fine, but at least just be up front about that.
Forgive me, but I'm genuinely confused as to how tattoo artists can literally own a part of someone's body.
 

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