Online store Redbubble ordered to pay Hell’s Angels $78,000 for using their logo without permission
Online store Redbubble ordered to pay Hells Angels $78,000 for selling items bearing motorcycle club logo without its permission
- Australian online retailer Redbubble ordered to pay Hells Angels $78,000
- Had sold items on their site displaying the club logo without obtaining permission
- This is the second decision against the online retailer in the past three years.
- They were penalized $5,000 in 2019 for selling items with the Hells Angels logo
Melbourne-based online retailer Redbubble has been ordered to pay the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club $78,000 after selling items displaying the motorcycle club’s logo without obtaining permission.
Redbubble is an online marketplace that provides a platform for users to upload images to be printed on merchandise, including stickers, mugs, t-shirts, and face masks, which are then offered for sale.
The decision is the second decision against the retailer in the past three years after it was penalized $5,000 for selling items marked with the Hells Angels symbol in 2019.
Melbourne-based online retailer Redbubble has been ordered to pay the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club (pictured) $78,000 after selling items displaying the motorcycle club’s logo without obtaining permission
A lawsuit against Redbubble resumed last year after it was discovered that other items were listed for sale with the Hells Angels logo.
The company uses keyword filtering to monitor uploads that may infringe copyright from organizations that have sought to protect the material, such as the Hells Angels.
Redbubble told the federal court it moderated two million artworks uploaded to its site in the past five years, including 114 related to the Hells Angels following the court’s 2019 ruling.
However, it has been revealed that the Hells Angels’ trademarks manager in Australia was able to purchase items displaying the logo despite the previous court ruling.
The decision is the second decision against the retailer in the past three years after being penalized $5,000 for selling items marked with the Hells Angels symbol (pictured) in 2019.
Eleven different ads were identified on its site during the case.
The court found that the processes that Redbubble put in place to prevent copyright infringement were flawed.
Several listings that had been suspended for manual review by an outsourced team in Jamaica, for example, were allowed to return to the site by mistake.
The company has since stopped outsourcing to the Jamaican moderation team.
Judge Andrew Greenwood said that although the detection system had improved, it had not worked effectively.
“Clearly they don’t operate in a way that results in violations always being promptly detected and removed from the website.”
The only people who bought items displaying the logos were members of the Hells Angel Motorcycle Club (pictured) looking to see if the items were still on sale
“Furthermore, proactive moderation processes such as outsourced…have largely failed to protect the candidate,” he added.
The only people who purchased items displaying the logos were members of the Hells Angel Motorcycle Club looking to determine if the items were still for sale.
Judge Greenwood awarded damages for trademark infringement.
Redbubble was ordered to pay $78,250 in damages and additional costs.
The decision comes after the online store was ordered to pay Pokemon $1 in damages for selling t-shirts featuring artistic depictions of its most famous creature, Pikachu, in 2017.
After spotting Pikachu and other characters on Redbubble, Pokemon Company International sued the online store for copyright infringement, seeking over $40,000 in damages.
The online store has been asked to pay Pokemon $1 in damages for selling t-shirts featuring artistic depictions of its most famous creature, Pikachu (pictured) in 2017.
The Federal Court ruled in favor of the Japanese company, but Judge Tony Pagone only awarded the nominal figure of $1 in damages.
That’s because the designs weren’t available for purchase in the official Pokemon universe and wouldn’t have earned royalties, the judge said.
“Many of the items sold on the Redbubble website involved a ‘mixing’ of images, such as the combination of Pikachu and Homer Simpson,” Judge Pagone said in his ruling.