Apple is being sued because of artwork featured as part of its “Start something new” campaign.
Artist Romero Britto is claiming in his suit that artistic duo Craig & Karl violated his trade dress in their artwork by copying his particular artistic style. Britto’s lawsuit, targets not only Craig & Karl, but Apple as well, due to the company’s use of a piece by the duo in their “Start something new” campaign. Britto alleges that Craig and Karl have been copying his style for years, according to the complaint:
Redman and Maier have systematically been using Romero Britto artwork to obtain jobs and advance their own careers by illegally trading upon the consumer affection and immeasurable goodwill built by Mr. Britto’s decades of tireless work, promotion, and investment, all the while causing damages and irreparable harm to Plaintiff.
Britto says that he was contacted by several people based on their belief that he had entered into a new deal with Apple. The artist says that he asked Apple to remove the offending image, but did not hear back, prompting the lawsuit.
The image in question was used in Apple’s campaign to highlight not only the iDraw and Waterlogue apps on the iPad Air 2, but also the collaboration enabled by features like FaceTime and iMessage. The piece has been featured not only on the campaign webpage, but also in Apple Stores.