The artist currently known again as Prince is suing eBay for allowing the sale of unauthorised merchandise and YouTube for failing to filter out unauthorised film content. The singer has instructed Web Sherriff, a company who specialise in tracking down copyright infringement on the internet, to act on his behalf: the company say that they have already had 300 eBay auctions ended, plus 2000 clips removed from YouTube.
A spokesman for Prince said that “very few artists have ever taken this kind of action over their rights. Yet, Prince has showed time and time again he is ready to challenge the system in new ways to put artists and music first.”
Prince may be the first to take such comprehensive action, but he surely won’t be the last. There are a number of eBay sellers who have built entire businesses on the back of using unauthorised images of celebrities: these sellers need to be aware that they may be the next target.