Advertising agencies sue New York Times over Facebook
Posted On August 4, 2021
A dozen ad agencies representing dozens of clients say the New York Daily News and the Associated Press are using their names and likenesses without their permission, and that Facebook violated a federal law that prohibits publishers from using their own trademarks without their authorization.
The lawsuit, filed Tuesday in federal court in New York, accuses Facebook of using the name “Associated Press” without a license and using a photo of a woman with a “G” in the company’s logo without her permission.
The AP, which owns the “Gmail” domain name, says the lawsuit is the first to allege the company violated a copyright law that bans using a trademark without permission.
Advertising agencies who represent clients including the Associated Mail, News Corp., The New York Post, Bloomberg LP and The Wall Street Journal have all filed lawsuits alleging Facebook uses their logos without their knowledge or permission, according to the complaint.
The complaint seeks a declaratory judgment that Facebook will cease using the Associated News trademark and the AP trademark in advertising, print and online.
The suit accuses the company of violating the Communications Decency Act and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.
The AP has not commented on the suit.
The Daily News is owned by The Associated Press, which has been fighting the use of its name by Facebook for years.
In an earlier lawsuit, the Associated Media, which is also owned by the AP, sued Facebook and other companies in 2016 for violating its copyright.
The Associated Press says it used the AP logo in its digital advertising in July 2016 and has used the name for more than five years.
It says Facebook uses the logo in Facebook advertising for two reasons: to recognize that it is owned and operated by the Associated New York Press and to create a logo that is more recognizable to users.
In its lawsuit, Facebook says the Daily News has used Facebook’s logo in advertising since July 2016.
The Times, in its complaint, says it has used its name and likeness for more-than 20 years and has never had permission to use Facebook’s name or likeness without Facebook’s express permission.
It says that the Daily Post and the New Yorker also have used Facebook and its logo in their advertising, and have never had a right to use the Daily Mail’s name and image without permission from Facebook.