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JGM
JGM, Solicitor
Category: Law
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Experience:  30 years as a practising solicitor.
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I have been running a small comedy venue for around 12

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Hi,
I have been running a small comedy venue for around 12 years. Due to the corona virus we are currently closed and recently put out an online show which I hosted. A minor competitor has taken the footage and of me hosting and made it look as if I am introducing him - he then proceeds to pretend to drink bleach. He has publically posted it on social media. I have asked him to remove it as I didnt give my permision and it is damaging to our reputation. He replied with an expletive and said see you in court. He has since suggested he will take it down if we retweet about him. I'm a well known face on the open mic scene and the competitor is relatively new and trying to get exposure through using my image and being shocking. Is he infringing my personal copyright and is there any reasonable action I can take? Thanks
David

Thanks for your question. I am an intellectual property solicitor in the UK. You own the copyright in the video and sound recording in the show. As such you are protected against someone else copying it and also giving it derogatory treatment. These are statutory protections under the Copyright Designs and Patents Act of 1988 which you can read online if you want. Your remedies are for a court order for him to remove the footage and also for damages for the losses likely to be sustained to your business or reputation. There is also an element of duress here if he is trying to blackmail you into retweeting him and that, if you could interest the police, strays into the territory of the criminal law. I suggest in the first instance you have your solicitor issue a cease and desist letter instructing to remove the video under advisement that he will suffer the consequences and costs of a court action if he does not. I hope that helps. Please leave a positive rating on the star rating system on your screen. That will allow JustAnswer to credit me for helping you today.

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Customer: replied 15 days ago.
Thank - you. Really helpful.