An Australian blogger who blogs about vitamin D supplements is going to court, accusing food network TSN of using his name without his consent.
In a complaint to the Federal Court, author Sarah Hall claims the network breached copyright by using her name without permission.
“The network has no right to publish my name without my consent and has breached the right to free speech by using my name and image without my permission,” she said.
“I am seeking damages for breach of copyright and the loss of my trademark rights and are seeking statutory damages.”
Hall said she was contacted by the network last year to write about her use of the vitamin D supplement Retinol.
She said she wrote a blog about the product on TSN’s blog in March, but it was pulled.
“In a blog that contained my personal opinions and opinions of myself and my experiences, it was used without my knowledge or consent to generate revenue for the network,” she wrote.”TSN used my name to generate advertising revenue for themselves, without my approval and without my authorization.”TSN told the ABC the blog had been published before, but that it had removed it from its website after receiving complaints from people about its use of her name.
“We remove content from our site after we receive a complaint, but we do not remove content before a complaint is made,” a TSN spokeswoman said.
“We have also removed the content from the blog, but are reviewing the complaint.”‘
It is a terrible way to promote’TSN said it had not used Hall’s name in any advertising.
“It is an appalling way to sell vitamin D products,” the network’s corporate communications manager Paul Dolan told the Sydney Morning Herald.
“They do not advertise for vitamin D, they don’t advertise for retinol and it is a horrible way to advertise.”
The network said the blogger’s blog had attracted more than 2 million page views.
Hall is seeking damages of $2 million in compensation and statutory damages.
“While it is not possible to predict the outcome of this case, I have always maintained my right to freedom of expression,” she told the Herald.