No Doubt sues Activision over inappropriate use of their avatars in Guitar Hero

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Famous rock band No Doubt has sued Activision over the use of its avatars in the game Guitar Hero 5. No Doubt says that the deal it signed with Activision only permitted the avatars to be used when playing No Doubt songs. The problem is that Activision has it set up that you can play any song in the game with the No Doubt avatars. That I’m even writing about this is rather depressing.

As easy as it is to ride No Doubt for being a bunch of nerds, the fact is if the contract the band signed with Activision specified that the avatars could only play No Doubt songs, well, then Activision is in the wrong here.

The band said in a statement:

No Doubt agreed to place avatars containing their name and likeness performing three No Doubt songs in the upcoming Band Hero game of the Guitar Hero series from Activision.

Without the band’s knowledge or approval Activision turned the group into virtual karaoke players by having them perform over 60 additional songs by other musical groups.

Meanwhile, Activision said:

Some of the world’s most popular and iconic artists have been featured in Guitar Hero as playable characters, and we are proud to count No Doubt among them. Activision has a written agreement to use No Doubt in Band Hero — an agreement signed by No Doubt after extensive negotiations with its representatives, who collectively have decades of experience in the entertainment industry. Pursuant to that agreement, Activision worked with No Doubt and the band’s management in developing Band Hero. As a result, Activision believes it is within its legal rights with respect to the use and portrayal of the band members in the game and that this lawsuit is without merit. Activision is exploring its own legal options with respect to No Doubt’s obligations under the agreement.

And there you have it. What a way to start the day~!

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