Pierre Garçon files class action against FanDuel

AP

[Editor’s note: FanDuel is an advertiser of PFT and PFT Live on NBC Sports Radio. Also, NBC Sports has an equity stake in FanDuel.]

The challenges facing the daily fantasy industry have taken yet another twist. For one of the major DFS companies.

Washington receiver Pierre Garςon has filed a class-action lawsuit in Maryland against FanDuel. The complaint alleges that player “names and likenesses have been misappropriated” and that FanDuel “knowingly and improperly exploits the popularity” of players at “offensive skilled position” absent their permission.

The press release announcing the lawsuit, posted by Mike Garafolo of FOXSports.com, contends that FanDuel “routinely uses the names and likenesses of some of these NFL players without authorization to promote FanDuel’s commercial enterprise, collecting huge revenues from entry fees.”

The press release states that FanDuel “continues to promote and to operate its daily fantasy football gaming product on the backs of NFL players like Mr. Garςon, whose popularity and performance make FanDuel’s entire business model possible.”

DraftKings presumably was not sued because it has struck an advertising deal with the NFL Players Association, allowing DraftKings to use player images and names. The next question becomes whether the lawsuit was in any way instigated by DraftKings or the NFLPA, as part of an effort to help DraftKings prevail in the cola war that has been unfolding between the two primary DFS companies.

103 responses to “Pierre Garçon files class action against FanDuel

  1. I hope both Fanstool and DaftKings go away.

    There, I didn’t use their names or likenesses.

  2. They should respond by not listing Garcon as an option in the game. I don’t think anyone would even notice.

  3. I support the players in this case but can the NFL survive all of the business interests that are taking such a prominent role? People love the NFL. People love to gamble, especially if there is some skill to the game that makes it less than pure chance. But, power corrupts and money corrupts and the NFL has both in large supply. A league that tried to frame its best asset, Tom Brady, and has now spent over $20MM in his persecution, is capable of anything.

    Are we losing the love of the game?

  4. Sounds like Garcon is ticked he ain’t worth Julio $$$

    The fans also pay for you to play Pierre, and those who pay Fanduel wanna play too.

    Loser

  5. What a punk move by Garcon. A guy whose GUARANTEED to make over $20,000,000.00 on a contract that could net him $42,500,000.00 — somehow wants even MORE money and has lawyered up and is now suing for it.

    Fact is, about 1/10 of one percent of the football fans even know what Pierre Garcon looks like. It’s not like he’s Tom Brady or Peyton Manning. And yet, Garcon is angry and wants more money.

    Lame. What a chump.

  6. The Name/Likeness is virtually a non-commercial factor…the wagering is over pure statistics, and these statistics are mini-news events or results.

  7. Those of us that are famous, or infamous, should be paid for use of our popularity.

  8. This is great, the border war continues. Draft Kings HQ. in Boston. Fan Duel HQ. in NYC. Maybe they can get the NYC based league office to file a suit against Draft Kings with no evidence and lots of false rumors and lies using the NYC based media a partner, you know their standard operating procedure to protect their fellow New Yorkers.

  9. Anything that slows down their incessant commercials is fine by me.

    Offer code: diedailyfantasydie

  10. So basically, what does this mean for Season long fantasy? Yahoo, ESPN, etc. all make money from “free” leagues through ads. They use the player name and likenesses as well. Is that going to be gone as well. This is all stupid. Stop trying to tell people what to do with their time and money…

  11. mrbigass says:
    Oct 30, 2015 4:40 PM
    It’s gambling any way you slice it……

    Yes it is but was given a specific exemption in the 2006 law that prohibited online gambling. In other words your point is moot.

  12. Iam just a fan and iam starting a class action suit for all fans because fandool uses fans !

  13. [Editor’s note: FanDuel is an advertiser of PFT and PFT Live on NBC Sports Radio. Also, NBC Sports has an equity stake in FanDuel.]

    ——————

    Everyone already knew Florio and PFT were huge schills. No need to reinforce it.

  14. REDSKINS
    EDSKINS
    DSKINS
    SKINS
    KINS
    INS
    NS
    S
    S
    NS
    INS
    KINS
    SKINS
    DSKINS
    EDSKINS
    REDSKINS

    REDSKINS
    #REDSKINS
    #HAILTOTHEREDSKINS

  15. The NFL better hope that DFS survives all the probes and lawsuits. A huge amount of people will simply stop paying attention to what is, in its current state, an almost unwatchable product.

  16. Sweet. I hope he wins. This is gambling wrapped in a shiny package called “fantasy” that takes advantage of weak and quite frankly sick people. The gov should go after these guys hard and get rid of both the big daily sites.

  17. I don’t see why everybody is hating on the chance to win money. I’ve won around $1500 so far n counting so don’t be mad cuz you don’t win. You sound like the teams NE has put the hurt on so far this season.

  18. I just heard on CBS Sportsradio that Garçon had at one time not long ago linked his Twitter page to either Draft Kings or Fan Duel (don’t recall which one) and was charging $10 for ???(again, cant remember specifics) which makes him a major league hypocrite. Check this out Florio.

  19. Pierre, I guess, feels that he is likely to earn more from a successful lawsuit against FanDuel than from any chance of any renewed contract from the Redskins (tee-hee-hee)

  20. I do not see him or any other NFL Player suing literally every website in the world who does Fantasy Football, Yahoo, MSN, AOL etc.

    Dont see him suing any casino’s or other sports betting sites for their fantasy football games either.

    Must be sad his team sucks as does he.

  21. IF it was TOM BRADY, NONE OF YOU would have a problem wit it! In fact MAJORITY of you would write a Dissertation about why he should WIN Or would WIN The Lawsuit! Biased AMERICA once again!

  22. I hope he puts Fan Dual out of business….they suck with their offers to match your deposit–yea, if you keep plunking money down they’ll give you a few shekels a week. And their values are ridiculous compared to Draft Kings.

  23. markaw31 says:
    Seems like the NFLPA would be the more appropriate plaintiff.
    _____________

    Yes, but rather than poisoning the well the NFLPA might well be using a stalking horse, not an uncommon practice for class action suits. If they were, a player from a team that’s very name incites controversy and that happens to also be in the nation’s capital where the legitimacy of DFS is under scrutiny might provide incentive to fanduel to act expediently. Oh and just to clarify that team’s name is the Redskins.

  24. I commend PFT for disclosing its conflicts of interest involving FanDuel and this report.

    Now, if we could only get similar disclosure from the corporate media regarding their many conflicts of interest in the political and business arenas, it would go a long way to raising awareness among the American public of the media’s propaganda and silence that enable the oligarchs/billionaires to control every facet of policy and enrich themselves, which would enable the American public to rise-up and wrest back their democracy.

  25. No matter how bathroom lawyers play with words, this is still NFL betting. and they wanna make a fortune on fantasy sports betting. I hope the NFLPA & NFL lodges a class action lawsuit against both companies.

  26. The fact that everyone’s gunning for these fantasy sites just confirms they are making an unreal amount of money. So much money that everyone involved in any way, shape, or form wants their share… A share that presumably would be so large that legal action is necessary.

  27. 2 billion entered. 200 million retained. No licenSe with he nfl players or nfl for that matter. Fans are getting screwed so is the league and players. That kind of profit for fantasy football is obscene

  28. They should respond by not listing Garcon as an option in the game. I don’t think anyone would even notice.

    —————————–

    FYI.. Garcon led the league in receptions with 113 the year before last..

  29. slickzmoney says:
    Oct 30, 2015 4:59 PM
    mrbigass says:
    Oct 30, 2015 4:40 PM
    It’s gambling any way you slice it……

    Yes it is but was given a specific exemption in the 2006 law that prohibited online gambling. In other words your point is moot.
    ~~~~~~~
    I don’t think that is quite correct. It wasn’t given an exemption. It was declared not to be gambling and therefore the law does not apply to FF. An exemption would identify FF as gambling but waive liability for non-compliance. That is why people keep saying it is gambling… because the powers that be said it isn’t and expect us to accept their stupid lie.

  30. I thought the sigma symbol was funny. They don’t let you guys have a sense of humor over there?

  31. paulieorkid says:

    What a punk move by Garcon.

    ——————————————————

    the guy is entitled to have control of the use of his Identity and not to have businesses profit off of his career without getting his approval and paying for it.

    doesn’t matter if no one would recognize him on the street, everyone who knows the game will recognize him in his jersey and by his name… and really it doesn’t matter if he’s recognized or not, a business can’t use ANYONE/s likeness and name for their own interest without consent.

  32. I dispise regular fantasy football. I hate when I’m watching a game and someone says ” I don’t care whether the Packers win or lose. Go Eddie Lacy!!!!” These nerds need to be stop.

    THEY ARE NOT REAL FOOTBALL FANS!!!!!!

  33. Any situation that nflpa can make money for the players I am for. Fan duel should pay the nflpa to use the players. Better they get the proceeds than the corrupt NFL.

  34. The fact that everyone’s gunning for these fantasy sites just confirms they are making an unreal amount of money. So much money that everyone involved in any way, shape, or form wants their share… A share that presumably would be so large that legal action is necessary.

    ******************************

    Based on massive advertising buys fan stool and the other guy are losing money the concept being consolidation based on who guys bankrupt first . Smart money is on draft queens failure since ABC ( oddly enough owners of ESPN ) pulled funding .

  35. People deposit money hoping they win more money… usually they lose. That my friends is called Gambling.

  36. Hmmmm….so is he upset that most of these stadiums are paid for by taxpayers? Hey Garcon when the owners and players pay for the stadium maybe I will understand your point of view.

    As long as these teams and players pay in tax payer paid for stadiums they really need to keep quiet.

  37. What a punk move by Garcon. A guy whose GUARANTEED to make over $20,000,000.00 on a contract that could net him $42,500,000.00 — somehow wants even MORE money and has lawyered up and is now suing for it.

    Fact is, about 1/10 of one percent of the football fans even know what Pierre Garcon looks like. It’s not like he’s Tom Brady or Peyton Manning. And yet, Garcon is angry and wants more money.

    Lame. Total chump move.

  38. The NFL tried to take control of the fantasy industry years ago by making a similar claim. A federal judge ruled that the player names and their stats are public domain and therefore dismissed the case. Expect the same here……

  39. 2o06 Court Ruling by Judge Mary Ann Medler, U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri, said the following:

    “There is nothing about CBC’s fantasy games which suggest that any Major League baseball player is associted with CBC’s games or that any player endorse or sponsors the games in anyway”.

    The judge also ruled that the use of the player’s name does not involve the “character, personality, reputation or physical appearance of the players”.

    “It simply involves the historical facts about the baseball players such as their batting averages, home runs, doubles, triples, etc.”.

    The ruling also found that the players marketability was enhanced by the games. The judge said players stats were no different than the news of the day.

    Players need to stop seeking publicity and living in the public eye (public paid for stadiums) if they dont like it.

    Case was CBC Distribution and Marketing v. Major League Baseball Advanced Media L.P., case number 4:05-cv-00252

  40. “The next question becomes whether the lawsuit was in any way instigated by DraftKings or the NFLPA, as part of an effort to help DraftKings prevail in the cola war that has been unfolding between the two primary DFS companies.”
    ******************
    That question is, of course, inconsequential. Fan Duel pays up or they’re out. With the scrutiny coming from the other direction, as well, they look cooked.

    If it is found that employees benefited, as alleged, there will be another, broader class-action suit, that I will join.

  41. The logic of this lawsuit is flawed. The only thing this hinges on is the money, because otherwise every season long fantasy site, fantasy advise site, newspaper, tv station, radio station, blog, whatever…anything that brings in revenue and also happens to use names and likenesses of NFL players would need to pay up. Not going to happen.

  42. Congress needs to shut down these money laundering enterprises. If these aren’t gambling then Roger Goodell is competent.

  43. It’s hilarious that a bunch of commercials have the mouthbreathers calling for the end of DFS. Be honest, you’re going swallow warm colors light and eat Doritos while taking in a variety of commercials about cars, phones, and beer anyway.

  44. They should use Promo code: Garçon. Just to be complete a$$holes. That’s a commercial I can enjoy.

  45. pierre garcon plays for the redskins?

    washington’s football team is called the seattle seahawks i thought?

  46. Yeah the company may have used a likeness or name w/o permission. I get it…..but it’s not like these players are going to go hungry anytime soon w/o getting whatever monies may be tied to a name.
    For the record, I am NOT a fantasy football, baseball or any other ball, player. I get tired of all the stinking adds.
    But I also get tired of hearing some of these players moan because they feel like they’ve gotten taken advantage of.

  47. This guy is a joke and complete garbage, who would draft this loser anyway. Dropped a wide open pass in the superbowl that would’ve led to a blowout of the Saints. That is the only legacy this loser has on his resume

  48. Woowwwww. There are some ignorant folks on here. Businessess can absolutely use the likeness of a player if it is sanctioned in the agreement with the league. Pierre does not own his likeness in a skins uniform. The league and Daniel Snyder do. Don’t have to like that, but that is the way it is. The Shield can MAKE HIM BE THE POSTER CHILD FOR WHATEVER THEY WANT AND MAKE MONEY OFF IT. THEY OWN HIM. THIS IS PRO SPORTS. THE PLAYERS ARE PROPERTY AND ASSETS, PERIOD.

  49. I used to love football. I mean it was all that mattered. Once upon a time I even enjoyed fantasy football. What the h€ll happened? I just don’t want to continue to contribute to the success and well being of any of these sleeze bags in even the slightest way anymore. It’s all so slimy now that I feel dirty just for watching it. Thanks Roger, NFLPA, ESPN, DraftKings, etc. Sure, get off my lawn, or whatever. But most importantly, goodbye. On to something more meaningful. And for that, I THANK YOU!

  50. Redskins.

    I can’t stand that every time I turn around I’m hearing a dfs commercial.

    As much as can’t stand the commercials, and even though I prefer season long fantasy football… I think this lawsuit is a joke.

    Fantasy football sites are not profiting off players’ likeness. They are profiting off players’ stats. I would be really interested to see the way they framed this case. I don’t see anything other than a long shot.

  51. White male to Native American : What’s your take on the use of Native American imagery in sports?

    Native American: ” I don’t mind indians, Blackhawks, Seminoles, chiefs or even redskins. It became offensive when it became an issue to the media.”

  52. He will lose and lose spectacularly. They are using public information. If he wanted to protect his name he would need to copyright it and then license only those news outlets that report. Since he didn’t he’s screwed.

    This whole thing is stupid.

  53. I think you may be referring to Yahoo Fantasy Sports vs NFL. Yahoo used to pay a license fee for using NFL Player’s names, stats, pictures, excluding team logos for their Fantasy Football. At some point they decided to let their license lapse and continue using NFL players names, stats, and pictures. In the end, the case was dismissed as these are all public domain information.

    I e-mailed an NFL executive for their rules and licensing terms for use of their team logos a few months back for a potential startup idea. My mail was forwarded to their lawyers and they informed of the site where you can download their package with information regarding this matter. And holy crap the licensing fees for team logos, colors, likeness, etc. was astronomical. For a bootstrapped startup, that was a dead end. Imagine, you probably will get harassed if you just use the team name with their colors. I can understand trademarked logos, but colors? I’m sure there are ways to squeeze through the color issue, but is it really worth having the NFL juggernaut bullying you?

    stataddict says:
    Oct 30, 2015 7:41 PM

    The NFL tried to take control of the fantasy industry years ago by making a similar claim. A federal judge ruled that the player names and their stats are public domain and therefore dismissed the case. Expect the same here……

  54. elolegend says:
    Oct 30, 2015 5:18 PM
    I don’t see why everybody is hating on the chance to win money. I’ve won around $1500 so far n counting so don’t be mad cuz you don’t win. You sound like the teams NE has put the hurt on so far this season.

    – If you need to gamble to stay interested then you’re not really a football fan.

    I support the right of people to foolishly thrown a way their money as well as my right to call them foolish for doing so.

    Gambling is God’s way of telling you you have too much money.

  55. Unlike the NFL going to court over Brady, this is a BS lawsuit. If they won, that would mean that nobody could ever write or opine about NFL players without their permission.

  56. Both of these DFS franchises well soon go away or be heavily taxed and restricted as Gambling Institutions, subject to the rules of said ventures at both the State and Federal levels.There is entirely too much money changing hands for the State and Federal Governments to just ” look the other way ” and they are holdings sessions , as we speak, to figure out ways and means to regulate and tax same ! This you can Bet on !…enjoy it while you can folks…db

  57. This might eventually become a case of missing the forest for the trees. I’m confident that an ever growing percentage of NFL viewership are not actually ‘team’ fans in the conventional manner, but simply watch to see how their own ‘fantasy teams’ do. This ratio is not static, & is likely to become more and more lopsided as the NFL product becomes more and more unwatchable. I’ve been a diehard NFL consumer for nearly 4 decades that has been teetering on the edge of disinterest this season. Between the hideous officiating and inability (unwillingness?) Of the league to fix it, this is a case of ‘sport’ transitioning into ‘entertainment’.

    I remember how upset and betrayed I felt as a young kid when I realized that professional wrestling was a scripted affair with managed outcomes. To this day, I still will only watch if someone else already has it on. I don’t follow it. I don’t spend any money on it. It is not ‘Must see’ TV. Surely, I am not the only one that feels this way. Saddening, really.

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