A mobile app developer may just have made a costly mistake. After using a photo of Kim Kardashian to promote their “selfie beauty” app without her permission, the reality star is seeking more than $10 million in damages in what her legal team say is “a calculated, unlawful scheme to usurp, use, and exploit [her] image, celebrity, and universal recognition in a world-wide marketing campaign.”
Kardashian’s lawyers say that in using her image, the developers behind iHandy have “reap[ed] millions of dollars’ worth of advertising and promotional services from [her], all without paying for it.”
As per the filing, which is 14 pages long, the company is alleged to have begun using her image back in September of this year to promote its “Sweet Cam” app. What’s likely to have irritated Kardashian even further is that the photo in question was one she originally posted to her Instagram account in order to promote her KKW Beauty cosmetics line.
She and her team claim iHandy directly benefited from the “sufficient notoriety, recognition, reputation, and influence” her name and image holds, mentioning how she would normally be “highly paid” for any such endorsement. They draw particular attention to how she is selective of what she commits to, so as to protect the brand she has carefully built up.
[Kardashian] does not use, like, nor endorse [the app] and did not authorize or agree to license use of [her] name, photograph, image or persona, in whole or in part, to any of the defendants to advertise or promote [their] products or services.
She believes the damages owed to be in excess of $10,000,000. It’s also not the only ongoing legal battle she currently faces. Last year, she filed a suit against British fashion brand Missguided, stating trademark infringement for the company using her names and images to promote “copycat garments.” In that particular case, she won $2,700,000, plus her attorney fees, after a judge ruled in her favor.