DuetsBlog Collaborations in Creativity & the Law

THQ Goes Down

Posted in Copyrights, Fair Use, Infringement

- Derek Allen, Attorney -

As 2012 winds down and we all recover from what I’m sure was a wonderful Festivus celebration (I know I’m still feeling the effects of a particularly bloody Feats of Strength and an overly ambitious Airing of Grievances directed at me by my family members), it seems time to wrap-up last month’s post about a tattoo artist who sued a video gamemaker because the gamemaker didn’t get his permission to feature one of his tattoos in a recent release.

Much to the chagrin of WWE boss Vince McMahon (who is owed $45 million by the gamemaker) and the tattoo artist who filed suit, the defendant, THQ, has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy.  As one might suspect, unsecured creditors (which our tattoo artist alleges he is by way of THQ owing him money from its use of his art) generally do not fare well when this type of thing happens.  Other unsecured creditors include the company’s shareholders and Mr. McMahon, hence his aformentioned chagrin.

Now that THQ is likely an empty bag as far as the tattoo artist is concerned because he probably can’t collect even if he wins, I suspect his lawsuit will dry up like a raisin in the sun (or maybe fester like a sore? or crust and sugar over? or maybe explode?).  Regardless of what happens, it’s almost certain this case won’t reach the merits so we’ll have to hold our collective breath as we (and our tattoos) continue to be featured in video games without our tattoo artists being compensated.