Prithvi Shaw, 18, hit off in his maiden cricket match by delivering a century on his test debut. The match was played in Rajkot against West Indies. While the twitter world was on a roll sending and posting congratulatory and encouraging messages, two brands got into legal troubles for doing the same.
Yes, Swiggy and FreeCharge were sent legal notices for using Prithvi’s name without any authorizations, in their tweets. The legal notices were sent by Baseline Ventures, the sports marketing company that manages Shaw’s commercial dealings.
Further, a compensation of 1cr from each of these brands has been asked for as part of the notice sent.
“This is not only unfair to the player’s achievements but also to other genuine current sponsors and potential sponsors of Prithvi who pay to associate and play by the rule books. We will be taking legal recourse against other firms too, who have resorted to similar ambush marketing communications,” Tuhin Mishra, MD of Baseline Ventures was quoted as saying by a media organization.
Swiggy did confirm receiving the notice and said that their legal department is handling the case. FreeCharge has yet not made any official comments.
Carol Goyal, lawyer, and IP expert said that the public persona of Prithvi Shaw is ‘in the public domain’ and he doesn’t ‘own’ his fame.
“Congratulating him in his moment of glory is not an infringement of any IP. Moreover, no real commercial value has been derived from use of his imagery,” Goyal said.
Now time will tell how both these brands deal with these allegations and whether they will have to pay a price for using Prithvi’s name or not. Shaw, on the other hand, is basking in the glory of his fabulous cricket showcasing and is soaring high on the success of it. At the age of 18, he is one of the youngest players to achieve this.