22 March 2019Copyright

Fyre Fest marketing agency sued for stealing meme

A “content creator” is suing US marketing agency  Jerry Media for allegedly stealing his meme as part of a promotional campaign, just a month after the company pledged to seek permission for all content it reposts on social media.

In the suit, Olorunfemi Coker, based in Nigeria, claimed that the marketing company used Coker’s screenshot of a text conversation describing a drunken night out to promote Jaja tequila.

Jerry Media posted the screenshot in January 2019 on its Instagram account with the caption “Me after my 6th glass of @Jaja”.

Coker claimed that the US company (more widely known as FuckJerry), obtained his content through an online search and copy campaign, and exploited it without his permission.

The Nigerian content creator, who posts “original comedic content” on his social media channels, has accused Jerry of “intentional and malicious” infringement of his copyright, and is seeking special damages in an amount to be established at trial.

He is also suing the company for violation of the US Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA).

Coker is seeking all profits as a result of the allegedly infringing activity.

In a statement sent to WIPR, Jerry Media said Coker's was a "frivolous lawsuit and we intend to defend it vigorously".

The suit comes as just the latest in a series of scandals for Jerry Media.

The company has been accused of stealing original content for its campaigns before. Last month, its founder Elliot Tebele admitted that he had “made enemies over the years for using content and not giving proper credit and attribution to its creators”.

Tebele pledged to implement a new policy whereby the company would “no longer post content when we cannot identify the creator,” and “require the original creator’s advanced consent before publishing their content to our followers”.

The company also was embroiled in the  negative publicity around the ill-fated Fyre Festival, for which it served as the marketing agency.

The festival was recently the subject of two separate documentaries produced by Netflix and Hulu. Jerry Media’s involvement in the organising of the festival, which is now the subject of numerous legal actions, was featured prominently in the documentaries.

WIPR has contacted representatives of Coker for comment.

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1 March 2019   A Fyre Festival attendee has accused Netflix of using her video in its documentary about the infamous luxury music festival.