Licensing trends reflect society’s cultural preferences, and are phenomena that continue to grow. Especially in today’s digital world with the exponential rate in the growth of information sharing, the expansion in consumers’ awareness of brand personalities and their licensed products is sure to continue to skyrocket. Brand personalities include those of celebrities, characters, and athletes.
As this segment of the licensing industry grows, we need to remember that for a celebrity, their brand is their personal asset and intellectual property. We call this type of intellectual property the owner’s right of publicity. Right of publicity generally is defined as the right of a person to control the commercial exploitation of his or her identity, and to prevent unauthorized commercial use. Each celebrity, athlete, and character is unique, and that uniqueness is valuable.