Model sues Kenya Airways in image rights dispute

Kenya Airways' Boeing 777-300ER aircraft at JKIA, Nairobi. FILE PHOTO | NMG

A woman has moved to court to protest the continued use of her photos to advertise Kenya Airways #ticker:KQ following the termination of her contract six years ago.

Purity Njogu has sued advertising agency Scangroup #ticker:SCAN and Kenya Airways.

Ms Njogu argues that she did not surrender her constitutional right to privacy in perpetuity when she signed the now expired advertising contract.
She further claims that the parties have refused to compensate her in spite of her pointing out the rights infringement.

“My images and pictures have repeatedly been used and continue being used against my wish for their economic gain in violation of my right to privacy as per the law,” says Ms Njogu in court documents in which she is seeking up to Sh5 million in compensation.

The dispute stems from an advertising agreement with the agency in early 2007 in which she was supposed to serve as KQ’s model in a promotion campaign, locally as well as internationally.

Without consent

But the agency declined her request for renewal after expiry, saying that she did not sign a contract of perpetuity and insisted that her image was no longer in use.

When she wrote to the agency to enquire on the renewal of her contract, she says she was told that the agreement reached allowed her images to be used indefinitely.

According to the agency, she says, they were not obligated to pay her any renewal fees and her advert was used only for two years.

The agency, she argues, later told her that all adverts involving her had been pulled down and claimed that they had alerted KQ to refrain from using them.

As at February 2012, she alleges that her images were still being used even within KQ’s cafeteria at its headquarters, on computer screens savers and email signatures without her consent.

KQ is said to have denied contracting her and declined to provide a model release form, which she had requested to be furnished with.

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